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Sunday, 9 June 2013

What's Now... Mendel 90 in progress

First, a quick recap on my last post, projects planned:

  • Filament extruder: I backed the filastruder Kickstarter so am just waiting for my kit to arrive so I can start experimenting with making my own filament.
  • Plastic shredder/grinder: No progress - Marcus Thymark is now focussed on his extruder, and his shredder although done is appears to be temporarily shelved.
  • Mendel90:  I've started work on this.  A colleague from work also wants one, so I have started collecting parts and printing.
With trying to print the parts of the Mendel90's, I have been following Nophead's recommended settings, but find the print quality isn't so great.  Some Googling has suggested that moving to Marlin from Sprinter would be a good idea, so today I am tackling this:

  1. Download the latest Marlin from GitHub
  2. Update the configuration.h file to suit my printer.  See these links for further info:
    1. 3d Printing update: Sprinter versus Marlin firmware & more
    2. Forum Topic
  3. Verify/Compile & Upload as per normal
    1. I found this didn't work as I used the new Hardware (Sanguinololu) definitions included with Marlin.  When I reverted to the Sprinter Hardware files it worked.
  4. PID Tuning
    1. One of the things I wanted to switch on in Marlin is PID control of the HotEnd.  I found this blog article by Lincomatic well written and helpful.
  5. Test and re-calibrate.
    1. I created my own stepped piece for use with Triffid Hunter's Calibration Guide as I found the 5x5 was a bit difficult to see while the printer is moving.
So, I now have Marlin running and a re-calibrated printer, so we will see if this helps with the Mendel90 Plastics printing...


Monday, 18 March 2013

What's next...

Having been absent from the RepRap scene for a while (well work and new baby seem to take a lot of time), I have managed to get my printer dusted off and running again.

I've done a lot of reading the last couple of weeks, together with some tinkering and decided on some future projects which I am watching.  These are (no order of importance or action intended):

  • Filament extruder: I always intended to recycle plastic, so am watching the "filastruder" developments with interest.  This has a number of similarities to the "Lyman Extruder" which won the desktop factory competition.  I suspect I may go for a mix of the two in the end.  Depends what the filastruder guys come up with by the time I am ready to progress.
  • Plastic shredder/grinder: Marcus Thymark is creating the "Filamaker", which will shred plastic and then extrude filament.  His initial focus is on the shredder which I think is great, but currently out of my budget, so ill keep an eye on developments.  He doesn't seem to have done much work on the extruder element yet.
  • Mendel90:  The most important thing any RepRap owner seems to need is: Another RepRap.  As mentioned in my last post, I will be making one of nophead's Mendel90s.  I do however want to make some changes (and need to keep costs down by recycling stuff I have), so will not be using a kit.  The main change is that I want a 300x300 build area and am thinking of dual extruders (with all the issues those bring).
Wish me luck....