Skip navigation

3D Printing

4 Posts authored by: KKHausman

Over the summer, students moving our 3D printers to and from the AggieSTEM summer camp sessions accidentally dropped three 3D Printers into a pit due to on-campus construction they were trying to lift the cart over, resulting in various types of damage to the MakerBot Replicator, RostockMax delta and MendelMax cartesian printers.

 

 

 

In order to prepare to give the free 3D Printing classes for Element14, I began repairing the three printers to get one into operational shape. The first printer to be fully recovered to operational status has been the MendelMax cartesian-format 3D printer based on the Prusa Mendel RepRap design. The first few items were visible as obvious damage to the printer itself - the LCD controller was knocked off, while the bed level probe was crushed, the hob was damaged by impact with a stronger material (the hob was made from brass), while the extruder hotend's nozzle was crushed by impact that closed the 0.4mm aperture.

 

Hob

 

The hob was replaced after my wife's observation of metal debris jamming the grub screw, which was ferrous and wiggled free using strong rare-earth magnets, allowing replacement with a spare hob.

 

e3DHotEnd

 

Because the J-head's nozzle cannot be separately replaced, I was able to obtain an all-metal E3D v5 hotend that was compatible with the J-head's mounting flange with some shimming.

 

MechanicalEndStop

 

Once replaced, the original hall-effect (magnetic) Z axis endstop was revealed to have been damaged as well, but after discussion with the original designer, I was able to replace it with a mechanical endstop using locally-available switches and a simple 3D printed replacement bracket shared with me via Git.

 

BrokenBuildPlate

 

After replacing the endstop, during test of the new extruder's elements, the filament slipped and yanked the spool holder from the top of the machine, shattering the borosilicate glass (Pyrex) build plate. While waiting on the replacement glass, my wife tried to bend the extruder's lower guidler and snapped it in half, revealing an internal break that was flexing as the extruder advanced and allowing filament to twist up in a void created by the broken extruder's guidler bracket being partially hollow.

 

BrokenLowerGuidler

 

Through judicious use of plastic-compatible epoxy, Super Glue and spare washers, I was able to return the printer to basic operation while I designed a thicker lower guidler that includes the shim needed by the v5 E3D hotend and ordered a copy from a 3D Printing service while I waited for the epoxy to harden.

 

GuidelerAndAdjustableTension


After the temporary repair, I was able to create a replacement for the flawed part. Once the new thicker lower guideler was installed together with an adjustable tension adaptation to the spring, I also fabricated a replacement for the upper guideler.

 

UpperGuidler


This allowed easier alignment between the filament and the new extruder hob, while I also reprinted Z axis caps to make everything the same color when I talk about additions to the printer (students noted the previous purple was hard to identify).

 

ZCap


While repairing the more solid extruder guidler components, a washer fell out, rolled the length of the replacement build plate, bounced off the frame and through a tiny slot in the power supply where it bridged 110VAC with the DC supply for the electronic control board, "letting the smoke out" of the chips and requiring a replacement.

 

FanMesh


To prevent further such issues, I sealed all of the power supply's vents using mesh screens for case fans.

 

RAMBOboard


I first tested an Arduino MEGA + RAMPS + Pololu stepper motor controllers, but settled on an alternate RAMBO controller board so that my replacement LCD could connect properly to the alternate bus structure.

 

AutoLevelProbe


After re-wiring the auto bed leveling probe to reflect the board's reversed and poles from a Servo standard connection, I was able to get the new electronics and auto bed level probe re-installed.

 

GLCD


After printing a case and mounting adapter for the GLCD, I was able to get this installed and working together with the 3D Printer so that the printer can operate stand-alone from the SD card without needing the host computer for basic operation.

 

RasPiBModels


Expanding beyond this, my students wanted to install one of the new Raspberry Pi B+ boards configured with OctoPi, WiFi and a Web-cam to allow wireless management and monitoring.

 

OctoPi


After designing and printing a case for the model B+, I was able to get this configured and installed, allowing remote access and control of the original MendelMax. Finally, after many steps, the "mildly damaged" 3D printer was returned to full capacity plus new capabilities and is used in my 3D Printing classes for demonstration of the use of 3D Printers in creating cases for Arduino, RasPi, and other electronics. Now, to get the other printers repaired in turn!

ProjectileIcon Summer Camp Project

The members of Texas A&M University’s AggieSTEM program invited me to bring SOLID Learning elements of 3D printing to their Summer Camps this year. Considering Projects for the classes, as the format will be a Project Based Learning engagement intended to create a useful end product the participants will learn from in other settings after the summer camps are over - I ran across this design in the MAKE magazine. The classes sessions include teachers-only Boot Camp sessions and multiple teenage-participant groups for students in Middle School through High School brackets.

cannon cam opener Summer Camp Project

Last month's MAKE magazine (volume 39) has a cover example of a 3D printed projectile for spud guns that will carry a GoPro camera aloft to capture video from high above the launch area. This GoPro Cannon Cam project seemed an excellent possible project for our summer participants, since the end product be used in later Physics lessons illustrating ballistic behaviors, Mathematics lessons addressing changes in trajectory measured against time of flight, and even Wildlife and Resource Management studies of the area around their schools seen from far overhead.

Components 300x274 Summer Camp Project

To test the time required to build one of these projectiles, students who had not yet left for Summer events printed out components using surplus natural ABS filament from our Project Egg support project earlier this year. I discovered the designer of the Cannon-Cam projectile originally left out the slip rings (2x) from his STL archive on the MAKE magazine site, so I created the missing design item and shared it on Thing-i-verse (http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:336517) for others who want to build their own projectiles. This was a hit with the students, as they enjoyed the idea that a toy missing parts could just have the replacements created at need with updates and personalization.

  Fins 300x249 Summer Camp Project

After the workshop participants got involved with the smaller pieces like the cut-off brass rods and torsion springs, things went in pretty well. The final design lacks only the GoPro camera and its window protector, and we will build the cannon itself in the weeks ahead! We are still trying to get permission to discharge the projectile on campus grounds and hope the Summer Camp’s sponsors like the project deliverable!

As the semester came to a close, students and educators working with us on SOLID Learning workshops and the use of 3D Printers in educational settings have reached the time for Final exams and term papers. Many objects we have printed over the past semester were included with last assignments of the Fall semester.

Parthenon 300x167 Student Dreams Made SOLID

Objects like historical sites were used in presentations, allowing young learners the opportunity to describe the events of people and governmental groups of bygone eras that other students could understand with the assistance of visual aids that can be passed around or even re-created easily if lost or damaged during earlier sessions.

DremelFuge Setup 300x277 Student Dreams Made SOLID

Other final assignments were made possible by 3D printed lab equipment like the DremelFuge centrifuge or laboratory lifts for optics exploration. Looking ahead to the Spring semester, I am excited to see several home-built 3D Printers coming together to expand this capacity within the local High School.

Puzzle Cube 296x300 Student Dreams Made SOLID

Students taking part in the Concepts of Engineering and Technology course have been studying alternative energy designs and the use of CAD software to prepare 3D objects like this puzzle that forms a cube when its individual components are assembled together.

Desk Organizer 1024x645 Student Dreams Made SOLID

My son is currently taking part in this class, and his own final project creating a design for a Desk Organizer fitting within a specified shipping dimensional volume was created using SolidWorks and TinkerCAD, where my University students use SolidWorks, Blender and AutoCAD in their own classes.

DeskOrganizerPrototype Student Dreams Made SOLID

Although each student’s creativity takes them along different design options, it was marvelous to see them creating their designs in solid form to test whether the pieces could be passed through the test dimensions patterned using simple cardboard cut-outs and then assembled as expected for use testing. Beyond simply learning to leverage new technologies students will increasingly find in professional design shops, this final level of testing allowed our students to change details in their design specifications producing a final project deliverable with greater rigor than their classmates in other sections of the course not currently taking part in the SOLID Learning research.

9781118660751 fg1006 Student Dreams Made SOLID

I am hoping that the self-built 3DR 3D Printers this next year will encourage other instructors to bring this capability to their own classrooms, expanding the capacity around the open source RepRap self-replication concept.

KKHausman

Summer Camp Project

Posted by KKHausman May 23, 2014

ProjectileIcon

 

The members of Texas A&M University's AggieSTEM program have invited me to bring SOLID Learning elements of 3D printing to their Summer Camps this year. I am considering our Projects for the classes, as the format will be a Project Based Learning engagement intended to create a useful end product the participants will learn from in other settings after the summer camps are over. The sessions will include one teachers-only and two teenage-participant groups.

The latest MAKE magazine (volume 39) has a cover example of a 3D printed projectile for spud guns that will carry a GoPro camera aloft to capture video from high above the launch area. This GoPro Cannon Cam project seemed an excellent possible project for our summer participants, since the end product be used in later Physics lessons illustrating ballistic behaviors, Mathematics lessons addressing chances measured against time of flight, and even Wildlife and Resource Management studies of the area around their schools seen from far overhead.

Components

To test the time required to build one of these projectiles, students who have not yet left for Summer events printed out the components using surplus natural ABS filament from our Project Egg support project earlier this year. I discovered the designer of the Cannon-Cam projectile left out the slip rings (2x) from his STL archive on the MAKE magazine site, so I created the missing design item and shared it on Thing-i-verse (http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:336517) for others who want to build their own projectiles.

Fins

After the workshop participants got involved the smaller pieces like the cut-off brass rods and torsion springs went in pretty well. The final design lacks only the GoPro camera and its window protector, and we will build the cannon itself in weeks ahead! Once that is completed, we can get permission to discharge the projectile on the campus grounds and see if the Summer Camp's sponsors like the project's deliverable!

Filter Blog

By date: By tag: