Build Your Own 3D Printer (1) — RepRaps Improved

October 25, 2011 | 19:45
Build Your Own 3D Printer (1) — RepRaps Improved
Build Your Own 3D Printer (1) — RepRaps Improved
Follow engineer Chris Vossen as he builds his own 3D printer.

3D printing is a relatively new hype, but who could be interested in a 3D printing device and what can be done with it? Well, to answer the first question, it’s not just prototype manufacturers. Think about what an artist could do with it, for example, or an instrumentation designer. Virtually any object can be made, as long as the plastic used to ‘print’ it with can hold the required form. So artists and sculptors, be prepared for a new way of creating objects!

Several options for 3D printing are already available. One option was illustrated to Elektor (TechTheFuture’s parent company) some time ago, when they entertained a couple of RepRap enthusiasts demonstrating their version of this free desktop 3D printing machine. Powered by the RepRap community, RepRap parts are made from plastic parts produced... by other RepRap machines! So it’s a self-propelling process where everybody helps each other by producing parts as a reimbursement to the community that provided them with the parts for their RepRap machine.

Now one of Elektor’s in-house electronics engineers, Chris Vossen, was particularly interested in the RepRap. But... his needs were for a more solid version of the RepRap. And possibly easier to build. So the project of building a 3D printer began.

Starting with aluminium as a base material, Chris spent many hours at his desk thinking about solutions to various obstacles this project presented and again many hours working at the lathe milling various proto parts for his own version of a 3D printer. In this section we cover his findings and enable you to witness the creation of a new machine, soon to be presented in Elektor magazine. Comments are welcomed, but not necessarily implemented…

Photo: Chris Vossen
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