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3D Printer Build

Posted by TonyNo , 29 March 2013 · 2741 views

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I finally decided on a 3D printer design and I'm going with the Prusa i3. I was going to buy an existing kit, but, found that I could save ~$400 by sourcing everything myself. Let's see if that pans out. :lol: 
The i3 is essentially a combination of a Mendeland a Wallace. Of course, I start down this road and then find a design that I like better... The Graber.
All of the threaded rod that is used on most of these printers is a huge pain, not only cutting it to length and fixing the threads, but, threading the nuts on and tightening them down all while trying to keep everything aligned. I started drawing up a design that eliminated the rod, but, happened upon the Graber design which has already done that. Bravo, sir.

I've heard that the linear ball-bearings (LM8UU) that a lot of people use are noisy. Add this to the fact that they need regular lubrication, and I started looking at options.


There are two companies that I know of that make non-metallic bearings that use polymers instead of lube. Pacific Bearing (PBC) and Igus. They both have parts that are drop-in replacements, and their top-of-the line parts are just over $9 each (ten required for the i3). Igus has a version that is about half that price, so, I'll be testing those. ;)

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Baby steps... LOL FInally got the ceramic-coated shafting and non-metallic bearings...




The printed parts are a bit small on the hole sizes, so, I'm looking at options to make the rest of the shafting fit. These are PLA and I have heard that hot water may soften them to allow the shafts to go in better without drilling.

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