All posts by jerome

Spool Dry Box V2

After build the first version of the spool dry box, there is still some things to improve. So here comes the second version of the spool box.

Design

Back of the box with the tube fitting.
Front of the box with the sensor.

The box itself is pretty much the same. Size of the box is narrower than the first version to better fit the 70 mm wide spool, allowing to accept a 65 mm spool too. The bottom plate has been removed and directly integrated in the box. This remove the need of a few screws and make the box more sealed than it was before. This also make the box easier to print as the first version wrapped quite a bit.

Bottom spool holder

The bottom spool holder is now a drop in place part. The ball bearing are attached to the plate using M3x16 conical head going through the center, using two small spacers. A place on the holder is made to fit the M3 nut. Between the ball bearings, in the middle of the plate are two small compartment to put the drying Silicat, either in small bags or granulate. The part can be easily removed to replace the granulate, even with the sensor in place.

The top element

The top element is the same concept as the bottom plate, the ball bearing are mounted using the inserts with M3 screws on the side of the plate. The plate as 8 places where you can put small magnets. I used 10mmx1mm self gluing magnets with the same inside the box, to keep the top element in place.

Printing

The parts were printed with PETG from Nunus at 250°C extruder temp and heated bed at 80°C. It is printing well at a maximum speed of 40 mm/s with my E3D V6 nozzle with Titan extruder. The fan was set at 50 % constant and 100% for bridging. However, I have noticed that at 100%, the nozzle was cooling down and the heater was not holding the temperature. I manage to stop the fan during that phase. I guess my fan nozzle is directly pointing at the nozzle and not the part, to check…

The box was a long time print but it worked well. However, for some reasons, there is a wrapping at the bottom of the box. To be honest I do know for the moment where it is coming from. It seems to appear as the box is getting higher during the printing.

The top Spool Holder (B) with 1 ball bearing and the magnets on the long side.

The top late was printed without any fast unless the layer is below 15 s total time ( Slic3r feature ). The part is nicely printed and this time without any wrapping. The part has the possibility to put 8 magnets on it. I personally put only 4, 2 on each side. If the lid is not holding, put some more ( and of course in the box !)

The bottom spool holder (A) fresh from the print.

The bottom plate.

The inserts for the ball bearings

The insert are printed with a 0.2mm layer to make the parts nicer. It fits the ball bearing nice and tight, just make sure you remove the blurs from the prints.

Result

V1 and V2 ( almost ) side by side. V2 is empty and there is no Silicat in it.

STLs

You can find all the STLs on Thingiverse or on the GitHub project for the AM8 MNG Far-Out under SpoolBox.

That it is ! If you enjoy it, drop me a line here or on thingiverse. Happy Printing

Spool Dry Box

Design

I decided to create a spool dry box. I am printing quite a lot and wanted to be able to keep my filament in perfect condition. For this purpose, it is required to keep the filament dry. I looked at many different design, some of them are using boxes and other are self printed. None of the design I found I could get easily the required parts or I was able to print them on my printer,

So I decided to design a new one. It has to be small enough to be printed on a 220×220 mm table. The design shall be simple enough, has a small hydrometer to show the current level of humidity in the box but also the status of the drying Silicat.

Bottom plate with holder

The bottom plate with the holder are screwed together. The concept is to lay the spool on four ball bearing. The spool shall roll easy on the ball bearings to minimize friction. The bottom element is screwed at the bottom of the box.

Front side with the humidity sensor hole.
Back side with the PTFE Pipe fitting.

Because the box is really small, it is not possible to have the top to be fixed with screws, the spool is no longer passing through the top opening. I used magnets to hold the top place in position. Four ball bearings are holding to spool in place, identical to the bottom system. When the box is closed, the spool is fixed and can go nowhere but where it should be.

The top element.

The top element is the same principle as the bottom plate with the four ball bearings. It also offers two compartments to place 10 gr Silicat packet. The small places on the sides are place for 10 mm diameter with 1mm thick magnets. The same magnets are placed in the inside on the box. When the top element is in place, the magnets are holding the top with the box in place.

Printing the parts

The side box

The side box is definetly the largest part. I printed everything with a 0.8 mm nozzle with a layer of 0.4 mm. It still took 10 hours of printing but without any problems. After the print a few problems showed up. The first is the hole for the sensor is too small. I had to rework the hole. The back hole for the fitting was perfect. I just cut a M10 thread and everything is fine.

The box bottom wrapped.

The bottom of the side box wrapped. I did not notice during the print. At the mounting of the bottom plate, I realized that something was wrong. I had to use longer screw to be able to fix the top. At the end, it worked but it is not pretty. On the next version, the bottom plate and the side box shall be printed as one part. This shall solve the problem.

Sensor mounted after some rework.

The sensor is a simple humidity sensor. After installing the sensor, I realize the spool, when full, is colliding with the sensor ! You can only put a full spool when you remove the sensor. On the next version, I will put the sensor at the bottom of the box.

Fitting for the PTFE pipe at the back of the box
The top plate without the middle Silicat holder and the spool holders.

After installing the middle part and the holder, the magnets are fitting perfectly and hold the part in place. Here again the top plate is not perfectly flat. The part did not wrap but I removed the part too soon from the plate, it was still hot and I think it just bend.

For a first version, it is not bad, it works. The filament is coming out of the box and my titan extruder has no problem working with it. The humidity is keeping constant as long as you are not opening the box and even after a week, it is pretty constant.

Difference between outside and inside boy humidity.

I am pretty happy with the first version but I still have some improvement to do, time for version 2.

AM8 MGN Far-Out V0.1.0 Power Supply Holder part 1

The first upgrade of my AM8 MGN BLV printer is to move the power supply at the back of the printer.

The initial design is simply holding the power supply at the back of the printer. The integration is also made to integrate the power supply into the housing design. Here is the first initial concept.

The Power supply with the holder from the front.
View from the back with the attachment to the frame.

The holder keep a free distance to the frame of 40 mm as the bed iOS over hanging the frame at the maximum movement position to the back. I designed the holder with hexagon. I like hexagon, they look cool, they make the part pretty stable, save plastic and over the possibility to pass cable through the frame. The only down point is the printing time.

The first part took 6 hours of printing. I am using a 0.4mm nozzle with PETG filament. The extruder was set to 250 °C and the bed at 80 °C. The first layer is printed with 10 mm/s as it seems the adhesion is a problem at higher speed. The rest of the print is done between 50 and 80 mm/s depending on the acceleration,

The printed part during a mounting test at from of the printer

I all, it is not bad, in part 2 of the Power Supply Holder, I print the second vertical holder.

Nunus PETG Filament

After printing for a while with PLA, I decided to go for a filament that is not so difficult as ABS to print and mechanically better as PLA. I decided to go for PETG. I had some good experience with the PLA from Nunus and decided to give the PETG from the same comapny a try.

As always, the filament came quickly and was nicely packed, complete sealed and vaccumed with a trying silicate package. It was nicely rolled and did not make any problems.

The printing of PETG is not easy, it tends to glue nicely on the nozzle. I have found for the Nunus PETG that the best temperature for my E3D V6 with titan Direct Extruder and X Nozzle around 230 to 240 °C. The bed temperature is between 70 and 80°C. I use a UltraBase glass plate and it sticks really nicely at here temperature. Do not go above 80°C, at that point you end up with more PETG on your nozzle than on the building plate… below 240 °C extruder temp, I have nozzle blockage, the filament is cooling off and no longer printing, stay at 240°C or above.

Oozing is an issue, it is fairly liquid and drop a lot from my nozzle. Due to that the retart of a print after a retraction is difficult, a little part of the next path is missing at the beginning. It is a problem if you are trying to get a lot of detail on the building plate.

If you manage to master these challenge, the Nunus PETG is really nice, it gives a really nice surface and the print is nice and constant. Make sure you are not printing too fast. I manage to get good results using 20 mm/s on the first layer and 60 to 100 mm/s after. If you have Klippen like me, make sure you printer has a good setup up acceleration limit ( 400 m/s2 on mine). It limits the print on the small seigments but allow faster move on large one. The PETG from Nunus is following without too many problems and the print is really nice.

In all, the PETG from Nunus is really nice for what I do and keep good accuracy during printing. Generally printing with PETG can be challenging but the the Nunus PETG is performing well.

3D Printer Upgrade

My 3D Printer is great for what I do. The modification to the project AM8 MGN BLV is simply superbe. However my modification is maybe not as good as it could be : the cable rooting is not exactly great, it Alpen to all the dust and have some problem with printing at higher temperature.

The objective of the upgrade is to completely build, at best from printing parts, a housing for the printer. In the process, I want to do a lot of things.
– Put the power supply at the back of the printer
– Put the main board at the back of the printer
– Put the raspberry pi with a camera at the back of the printer and allow the camera to take picture of the print.
– move the Z Axis behind the Z frame. It is not critical but offer more space for the X Axis and it is easier to access the X Axis
– Change the X Axis to have the motor below the 20x20mm, having the belt in front the of X Axis with a belt tensioner easy accessible from the front of the printer
– Move the Y axis at the bottom of the frame to get more space for the Y Carrier. It allows to change the heated bed support ( to put some isolation) and a better table setting.
– Redesign the X Carrier to fit my E3D V6 with direct extruder.
– A complete housing to stop the dust landing on the printer and try to keep the temperature more stable in the printer, allowing to print other material than PLA, for example ABS.
– Some kind of spool holder with a dry box to keep the filament safe.

There is a lot of things to do. I will post the progress step by step and all the files to print the objects. I will also put everything on a Thingiverse project so everyone can access the design.

A lot of things to do ! Let’s go !

Workshop part 2

I managed to get 3 hours of work straight yesterday on my workshop project. There is definitely something good about home office on confinement !

I manage to cut the grove on the horizontal beam. This allow to fit the top shelves plate nicely in the grove. The foot had to have a groove too, other wise it would not be looking good. I fitted the horizontal beam to the vertical and foot using dovetail, just one big one. After all this I was able to glue and fit my first two parts together.

First two parts !

The edge for the plate is longer than the horizontal bar as it fits on the two vertical element.

The grove at the bottom for the bottom shelve

The slot for the bottom plate, at exactly the same height as the other side … At least I hope…

Glued !

The two elements together. I check with the square to make sure the tow parts where squared before clamping them together. The fitting of the dovetail is not perfect, there is a bit of a gap. But the glue is filling the gap so it should not be too visible !

That it is for today and for the foot. Next will be to cut the slots for the French cleaves, finishing the first side.

Raspberry Pi Gadget

I have been using a Raspberry Pi 4 for a while and it is simply great, it is fast, has tons of cool features. however, I wanted to have a portable system so I can take it with me anywhere, connect to a PC or my iPad and continue to work on my favorites projects. Due to the confinement I had to give my RPI4 to my daughter as a home PC so she could do her homework on Internet. Consequence I had to buy a new one for me ( yeahhh ). Here is how I have done it to get it running.

I bought the RPI4 and the standard case from amazon. I also bought a fairly fast SD card and some cables. Here are the links:
Raspberry pi
Case
SD Card 128 Go
USB-C Cable
USB-C to USB-C
HMDI Cable

First you have too install the Raspbian Operating system on the SD Card. Download and Instructions can be found here. Connect all the cable you need and power up. Simple !

It is a good idea to change the default pi user to your personal user. A really good instruction can be found here

To be able to use the raspberry pi with the USB-C cable only, you need to setup a few things on the RPI4. Here is a great instruction.

On my iPad that was already enough to get it running and be able to connect through the USB-c cable directly using SSH, same on my Ubuntu machine. However, on my Windows 10 PC, I was required to install a small driver. Instruction can be found here.

After that I am all set. I can power and connect to my RPI4 using the USB-c cable. When I am home, it connect directly to my WiFi and I can use the internet. On the way, I use my iPad as personal hotspot to connect to the internet. For the moment, I have all my favorites projects on it. I will set up the file sharing to share the file with the PC and iPad to have some storage space that I can synchronize with a cloud system.

Here you go, I hope it can help you. Have fun with this new gadget !

3D Printer

About 2 years ago I deceived it was time for me to get a 3D printer. I found on the internet the Anet A8 for 150 euros and I just bought it.

I spend a bit of time using it realizing it definitely could be better. Off course, there was tons of possible updates I have found on the internet, from power supply to new extruder. I almost made them all and the results we definitely better.

I even found later on on Thingiverse a project to upgrade my Anet to a full MGN12 rail system with Aluminium frame ! I jump on that upgrade and again, it definitely improved the print. Now it is running and looking like this.

It is the way it is and works pretty well but still have some limitation and therefor some potential I want to have.

First of all, it does not look good… There is some parts missing, the cables are a mess and the general appearance can be improved.

Second, printing with PLA is working fine. The sticking on the printing plate is gone using the UltraBase platte with correct extruder distance ( BLTouch helps a lot on that ). However, I still have some issues on PLA and my Benchy can still do some improvement, the one I see on the internet looks definitely better. After some research I have found that it is related to the part cooling, My x carriage setup can be improved and is not cooking the part correctly., On top of that it could also do with some cable Organisation.

Printing anything else than PLA is simply not working. The printer has no inclosure and is in my basement. It can be fairly cold down there, especially in winter and it shows on the heated bed performance : I can nearly reach 90 °C, just not enough for ABS or other high temperature plastic.

I decided to make some improvement and I will start with a new design of the X Carrier. Later on I would like to build a new printer in XY mode, so I want to make improvement that I can reuse later on. Let’s start the journey !

Workshop Part 1

Today I am continuing the left side of the first element I started yesterday. I had to make a new part as I broke the other one I made during cutting with chisel.

The part I am making is the side block, that hold the horizontal French clearfs and the two plates used as storage.

I first cut a dovetail type in the vertical beam to mount the horizontal one.

I cut first using a Japanese saw and finished with chisel ( Japanese of course 🙂 ). To make sure the cuts are perfectly straight and perpendicular, I used a small guide.

I also cut the grove where the top plate is coming.

This was all from yesterday, today I cut the grove in the horizontal element to fit the top plate and cut the grove for the lower plate in the vertical beam.

I cut the second slot for the lower shelve. I first use s saw to cut as much as possible. Then remove the wood using a chisel and make the sides. To make the sides, I use a hard wood piece as guide.

It helps me getting the line straight but also helps me to get the cut vertical. I am not good at it so I use all the tricks I can …

When both sides are done, I use my veritas to check the high, I just slide it along and when it stops, I have to remove more material at the bottom. Simple !

And with a bit of patience it is done !

Voila ! That is enough for today, let see tomorrow how far I get.

Backup ! Backup ! Backup !

I am sure you heard about this already, make sure you backup everything ! Most probably, like me you can no longer hear it. In february, apparently there was a security issue on word press where it was possible to reset the database, and this is exactly what happened to my blog : The database has been reset and of course I did not make a backup ! On top of that, my host provider had a complete hardware crashed, the backup was restored but the database was already empty !!!

This show how important backing up is. I will have to make a plan how to do that !

On the other side, it is a good opportunity to start from scratch, make a new design, new structure and new contain ! More to come !