Sunday, June 8, 2014

Building the 3D Printer


Woo! I figured out what my password was for this old blog. But yeah, I thought I'd throw up an update on a recent project. I know my mom is always dying to see pictures of what I'm working on. So for you mom, and anybody else who is interested, here are some pictures of my recent 3D printer build.
Well to start off here are some prints I've done. These are Klein bottles. If you don't know what a Klein bottle is, its only like the coolest theoretical math object since the Mobius strip. This of course is merely a 3D representation, as the actual 2D object could only really exist in 4 dimensions. So yeah, I'm a math nerd, moving on...
On the left is a Batman Iphone case I printed, On the right is a case for my Raspberry Pi computer.
And this is a cover for the controller board on the 3D printer. It was my first full print and I watched it diligently for 3+ hours till it finished. Honestly every time I use it I just want to watch it. Partly because I'm afraid something will go wrong mid print and partly because I find it mesmerizing. Heres's a video.


Here are some pictures from the build. At the time I built it, I didn't have any tools besides a couple of kinds of pliers. It took some ingenuity at times but I was able to build it with just those.
The starting materials.
Various times during the build. I had to calibrate the stage so that its corners and center were exactly 0.1 mm from the nozzle at starting position. I don't have any measuring tools that can measure gaps with that kind of precision so I used my calipers to measure 0.1mm of pages in my checkbook and then used that to calibrate the stage. Who needs real tools? (I'll admit they do make things a lot easier)
Then I had to make the final calibrations in the electronics and motor drivers. I really don't have room in my room for a 3D printer. I would clear off my bed and use it for a workbench during the day but now that it's made I have to find a more solid place to keeps it. This last picture is a sneak peak at my next project, built with the assistance of my 3D printer.