This Roadtest has been done on an "Engineering Release" version of the product so there may be differences to the released product


The Robox case and mechanism feels very robust, with a mix of metal and plastic, it's held together with lots of hex socket screws. The case is split into two parts with the reel and electronics on the left and the printing space on the right. The top, front and right side provide great viewing area to see the printing in process.


The printer has an RGB light at the top and I was initially a bit sceptical about the use of this. However given that you could run multiple printers from the same computer it could be useful to colour code each one as the colour is displayed both by the light and on the software so you could use them for identification.



The door lifts up and out of the way and has a good thickness to it so also feels robust.

RoboxDoorMechanism.jpg RoboxDoorLock.jpg

The door locking mechanism is quite elegant in that it is opened by moving the bed all the way to the front. The software won't let you unlock the door if the bed or heat are too hot and a warning is displayed on the screen.


The reel holder has a large spindle with locking pins to hold the reel in place. There are two lots of contacts on the reel so it's not possible to mount it incorrectly, the smart reels seem to have a small chip (eeprom) that stores the settings for that material. The middle of the spindle acts as a status light and control button, one press to pause and a long press to eject the filament. The holes for the filament are large and funnel shaped so it's easy to load the filament into place.

RoboxSpoolHolder.jpg Spool.jpgSmartSpoolElectronics.jpg

The bed is moved with a belt as is the X axis, all three axis are supported by metal rods and linear bearings. The Z axis is driven by a screw thread.


The bed itself is heated with a mains powered heater under the bed, on top of this sits a simple sheet which can be easily unclipped to be replaced or repaired.


The front edge of the bed is a wiper which is used to clean the nozzles before each print. The front of the printer case also unclips so you can tip out any plastic pieces that have fallen off the bed and down one of the slots.


The head has dual nozzles the fine size is used for the outside and the larger head is used to fill the shapes. This means that you get faster printing speeds without sacrificing the detail. These are on a rocker so that the heads move up when not in use. I had to take the head off to upgrade the Bowden tube so here's some photos of it up close.


The head has a fan on the top to control the cooling of the nozzles and filament, there is also a larger fan on the top of the printer by the power supply to rapidly evacuate the hot air once the print is complete. By controlling these two fan the build temperature can be controlled. This is all done automatically for you but you can over-ride the default temperatures if you like.


As you might tell this particular print has an issue with the back edge curling up from the bed so it turned out a bit misshapen. I'll write up another article on the different things I print and any issues I have.


A side effect of a problem I've had with the bowden tube (the tube that feeds the filament) is that I've got some photos of inside the electronics compartment. The brains of this model is an Atmel micro-controller. You can see in the last picture the bowden tube that's no longer attached to the extruder.