Vision 3D Printer – Software Setup

General Information Needed

  • Stepper Motors:
    • Model: sy42sth47-1206a
    • 1.8° per step = 200 steps per rev
  • Stepper Drivers:
    • Pololu
    • 1/16 microstepping
  • X & Y Axis
    • 18 tooth pinion gear
    • MXL belt (2.03mm pitch)
  • Z Axis
    • M6 – 1mm per rotation  ???
  • Extruder
    • Pinion: 11 tooth
    • Extruder gear: 45 tooth
    • nozzle: 0.35mm – 0.5mm (read the size)
    • filament: 1.77mm (you need to measure multiple places and rotations, and then take the average)

motor_curve

Reference Material

Configuration Values (steps per mm)

I calculated these values by using Prusa’s calculator above and Richrap’s blog post on extruder calibration:

  • X Axis: 88/90 (calculated/measured)
  • Y Axis: 88/90
  • Z Axis: 3200
  • Extruder:  595/632

Marlin Firmware

I’ve recently switch to the Marlin firmware and so far it seems to be working at least as good as Sprinter. It took a lot more setup to get it going, so hopefully it will be worth the effort. Here is my Configuration.h file.

NOTE: I only have 3 endstops: X_MIN, Y_MIN, Z_MIN. To get Marlin working I had to add jumpers for the X_MAX, Y_MAX, and Z_MAX endstop pins and set the max travel distance in the configuration.h file.

SD Card

If something is wrong, getting the SD card to work can be a little tricky because there is basically no debugging information. Make sure these things are true before you begin:

  • SD Card is formatted FAT 16 (some people say OSX doesn’t format it correctly, so I used my digital camera to do it)
  • SD holder is plugged in properly. The holder has 12 pins, but there are only 8 sticking out of the RAMPS. Make sure the lower 4 holes are hanging over. Look carefully at the RAMPS Wiring guide
  • In Marlin’s Configuration.h file, add/uncomment the line “#define SDSUPPORT”


Using the SD Card:

  • Name your file auto0.g if you want Marlin to automatically print it on boot
  • Alternatively you can “SD Print” from pronterface and unplug the computer once its started

Slic3r

I added some custom g-code settings to the begin and end sections in slicer. Click Print Settings -> Custom G-Code

Start G-Code

M92 X90 ; X steps per mm
M92 Y90 ; Y steps per mm
M92 Z3200 ; Z steps per mm
M92 E660 ; Extruder steps per mm
G28 ; home all axes

End G-Code

M104 S0 ; turn off temperature
G1 X120 Y200 F1200 ; center x axis and move bed to front
M84 ; disable motors

Assembling The Vision 3D Printer (Steps 22 – 26)

Step 22 (endstops):

parts needed:

  • 3 endstop brackets (printed)
  • 3 wired endstops
  • 3 black bolts (16mm)
  • 3 small black nuts
  • 3 zip ties

IMG_0099

Attach the endstops to the brackets with the zip ties. Note the orientation of each bracket in the photos:

IMG_0100 IMG_0104

Mount the end stops so that they limit the print nozzle from moving past the 0,0,0 position on the board. Or in other words:

  • X – Nozzle is furthest left
  • Y – Nozzle is closest to the front (bed all the way back)
  • Z – Nozzle can get very close but not touch the print bed (Don’t forget the glass/mirror)

Mounted X endstop:

IMG_0101

Mounted Y endstop:

IMG_0102

Mounted Z endstop:

IMG_0103

Step 23 (Controller firmware):

Items needed:

NOTE: This step is Mac OSX specific, but the Arduino site has great instructions for uploading firmware or all supported operating systems.

Plugin the board to the computer using the USB cable. Confirm the computer registers the board By Going to System Preferences->Networking:

Screen Shot 2013-02-23 at 4.08.02 PM

Download the Arduino software and move it into Applications. Open the software and Select Tools->Board->Arduino 2560. Then select the correct serial port. It will be called /dev/tty.usbmodem*

Screen Shot 2013-02-23 at 4.10.11 PM

Open the Marlin.pde Sprinter.pde firmware file in the Arduino app, and click the Configuration.h tab. Look for the following variables and make them look like this:

#define _AXIS_STEP_PER_UNIT {80, 80, 3275,700}

const bool INVERT_X_DIR = true;

const bool INVERT_Y_DIR = false;

const bool INVERT_Z_DIR = true;

const bool INVERT_E_DIR = true;

NOTE: _AXIS_STEP_PER_UNIT will likely need some tweaking based on your exact setup. See Software Setup for calculating the values.

Finally, click the upload button (right arrow). You can unplug the controller once its done.

Step 24 (Connecting the controller):

parts needed:

  • ramps controller
  • 3d printer assembly
  • zip ties
  • 4 small washers

IMG_0105

Cut 4 zip ties near the head.

IMG_0106

To mount the controller, slide a zip tie through one of the holes on the board and into the printer. Then take a washer and put it around the zip tie, and finally tighten the zip tie with one of the cut off end. Mount the controller so that the USB and power plug faces up:

IMG_0107

Attach all the wires to the controller as shown in the RAMPS wiring diagram. NOTE: make sure to match the colors of the wires, not the orientation of the plugs.

Step 25 (Lighting):

parts needed:

  • lighting controller
  • lighting strips
  • Y adapter
  • printer assembly
  • double sided tape
  • Kapton tape
  • 2 Foam strips

Tilt the printer onto its face. Take some pieces of double sided tape and attach a light strip to the bottom edge of the 3d printer. Make sure its centered. Peel the backing off of the light strip, and take 3 pieces of kapton tape and secure the strip to the base at the ends and center:

IMG_0112

Take a foam strip, peel off it’s backing and attach it to the lighting strip (sticky side to sticky side). Then repeat this process for the other side.

IMG_0113

Step 26 (tidy up the wires):

At this point the printer is basically assembled (minus the cooling fan and shroud). Tidy up all the loose wires with zip ties:

IMG_0108

Make sure the extruder wires are loose and can span the entire distance that the X-carriage needs to travel:

IMG_0109

Make sure to create a strain-relief for all 3 endstops:

IMG_0111

The controller wiring looks like a mess in this photo, but its actually quite organized:

IMG_0110

Assembling The Vision 3D Printer (Before You Begin)

The Right Parts:

Before you start building the Vision 3D Printer, you should double check that you have the right amount of a few key parts.

10mm black bolts (14 needed)

These will be used to mount the 4 stepper motors. Two of the stepper motors require 4 bolts each , and the other two require 3 each. My kit was short 2 bolts, so double check yours.

8 skateboard style bearings

These bearing are used for the the X and Y axis belts and for the Z axis supports. Its possible you can get by with 6 bearings, but I used 8. Here are the possible modifications:

  • Front Y axis: 2 bearings
  • Back Y axis: 1 bearing (optional 2nd)
  • X axis pulley: 1 bearing (optional 2nd)
  • Z axis supports: 1 bearing each

Mistakes In This Guide:

There are some mistakes in this guide, though I’m trying to correct them as I find them so please send me your feedback! Also, should you ever find a discrepancy between the photos and text, you should defer to the text. In many cases I took the photos before realizing there was a problem, and correcting the text is much easier than correcting the photos 😉

Assembling The Vision 3D Printer (Steps 19 – 21)

Step 19 (installing the hot-end):

parts needed:

  • extruder assembly
  • wired hot-end

IMG_0088

Unscrew the two black bolts stick out the back side of the extruder assembly. You don’t need to take them all the way out. Just loosen them enough so that the black hot-end stub can be removed:

IMG_0089

Inser the wired hot end into the hole, and align it so that the wires are in the back, and the heater block is straight:

IMG_0090

Now tighten back up the two bolts.

Step 20 (Mounting the extruder)

parts needed:

  • 3d printer
  • extruder assembly
  • 2 wide black bolts (3.5mm wide)
  • 2 large black nuts
  • zip ties

Slide the two bolts into the x-carriage. Note their position. The extruder needs to be installed at an angle so that is does not rub against the x-belt.

IMG_0091

Insert the two nuts into the traps on the extruder, and attach and tighten down the extruder.

IMG_0092

Once installed, use a zip tie or two to secure the extruder wires together and out of the way of any moving parts like the belt.

Step 21 (Power Supply):

parts needed:

  • power supply
  • wiring pack
  • RAMPS Controller board

IMG_0093

Take the power cord with the switch and cover attached, and connect the 3 wires to the power supply. From RIGHT TO LEFT the Colors are BLACK, WHITE, GREEN.

IMG_0094

Now take the small cable with the plug on one end and attach it to the 3rd and 4th screw terminal from the left. There is a small line that divides the Negative 3 terminals from the positive. This plug connects to the inner two terminal, straddling the line. Check out the photo:

IMG_0095

Now Add the two red/black cables in the same way working your way inside to out:

IMG_0096

At this point you can put the cover on:

IMG_0097

Finally, take the power plug off of the RAMPS controller board and attach the 4 bare wires to it. The pattern for this plug is different. Positive and Negative alternate. In the photo below from RIGHT TO LEFT, it is RED, BLACK of one cable, then RED, BLACK, of the next cable:

IMG_0098

Assembling The Vision 3D Printer (Steps 14-18)

Step 14 (Z axis motor couplers):

Update: This step is easier done just after Step 4

parts needed:

  • 2 short tubing
  • 8 zip ties

Turn the printer onto it’s back so that you can access the two Z stepper motors. Cut a zip tie so that it is 14 mm long from the tab.

IMG_0073

Stick the short zip tie in one end of the tubing and slide it onto the stepper motor shaft. NOTE: you want the zip tie to line up with the flat part of the shaft.

IMG_0072

Take 3 zip ties and and wrap them around the tubing on the shaft and tighten them down super tight.

TIP: You can use slightly larger pliers to both pull on the zip tie end while pushing the tab down. Grab the end very close to the tab, and then rotate the pliers over the end of the tab until the end of the zip tie breaks off.

IMG_0074

Repeat this step for the other Z stepper motor.

Step 15 (Mounting the X-platform):

parts needed:

  • X platform (steps 12-13)
  • 2 threaded rods (230mm)
  • 2 springs
  • 4 brass nuts
  • piece of cardboard or packaging
  • 2 zip ties

Put the cardboard/packaging material on the heated bed to protect it, and then slide the X-platform through the side of the printer and rest it on the protective material.

IMG_0076

Update: This is recommend from the Reprap Prusa Build Manual

Take the 4 brass nuts and wrap them 1.5 times in electrical tape.

IMG_0068

Then cut the them apart from each other:

IMG_0069

Slide one nut into the bottom of the X-motor assembly. Drop the spring into the top, and then press a nut on top of it. It should take a little pressure to hold the nut down.

IMG_0071

Now thread the rod through the the top nut. When you thread the rod through, you need to keep the top nut flush with the top of the assembly so that the spring is under a little bit of tension, Once you pass the bottom nut, it will hold itself in place. Keep threading the rod until it sticks out a couple of inches past the bottom.

IMG_0070

Now attach the threaded rod to the tubing on the motor shafts. I found it easiest to forcefully push the rod into the coupler to get it started. Then take two extra brass nuts and lock them on the bottom of the shaft as a gripping point. With those in place, hold the tubing with pliers (gipping around the motor shaft), and then use the wrench to turn the double nuts. This threads the shaft farther into the coupler. You want to keep turning until there is only a small (4mm?) gap between the the motor shaft and the threaded rod.

IMG_0077

Step 16 (Z axis bearings and support):

parts needed:

  • printer assembly
  • 2 smooth rods (315mm)
  • 2 bar clamps (printed)
  • 4 large flat washers
  • 4 large nuts
  • 4 linear bearings
  • 2 bar caps (printed)
  • 4 small flat washers
  • 8 black bolts (25mm)
  • 8 black nuts

Insert two black bolts with small washers into each bar cap and set aside.

Attach the bar clamps with washer and nuts leaving them loose (See step 1 where we did this before). Slide two linear bearings onto a smooth rod and then slide the rod into the bottom bar clamp, and rest it against the top bar gap.

IMG_0078

Attach the top bar cap and tighten it down. NOTE: be careful to get the nuts into the traps on the z-motor mounts. Then get the digital calipers and measure the distance from the top of the smooth rod to the side of the printer. Tighten the bottom bar clamp so that the bar is perfectly parallel to the printer wall. Use the digital calipers to make sure the top and bottom are even.

IMG_0080

Slide the linear bearings into the X-assembly and tighten them down with 2 bolts and 2 nuts. Again, make sure the nuts slide into the traps on the bearing mounts. See step 7 where we have done this before.

IMG_0081

Repeat this step for the other side.

Step 17 (Z axis support pt2):

Update: Matt says this step is no longer needed and can lead to z-wobble. I have not noticed any problems however.

parts needed:

  • 2 bearing blocks (printed)
  • 2 bearings
  • 4 brass nuts
  • 2 black bolts (25mm)
  • 4 small flat washers
  • 4 black nuts

IMG_0082

Insert a bearing into a bearing block (as shown above), and clip the block onto the lower end of the smooth rod. Attach two brass nuts onto the threaded rod, with the lower nut 7mm above the end of the rod. Counter tighten the two nuts, and slide the bearing mount up until it is supporting the nuts/threaded rod. Tighten the bearing block to the smooth shaft using  a 25mm bolt with washers, and a double nut at the end.

IMG_0083

Repeat this step for the other side.

Step 18 (X platform belt):

parts needed:

  • 2 black bolts (25mm)
  • 1 black bolt (16mm)
  • 2 small flat washers
  • 3 nuts
  • 4 part clamp set (printed)
  • belt
  • 1 zip tie

IMG_0084

The photo above is missing one of the clamp pieces.

Warning: This step is admittedly questionable. I scrapped this together from some photos on thingiverse and reprap forums.

The first clamp to install is the one closest to the motor. Take the zip tie and tighten it about 1 inch from the end of the belt. Then fold the belt in half (teeth together) with the zip tie at the crease. One of the belt clamps is a little too narrow for the belt and at the same time, way too deep. Take the folded belt and wedge it inside the clamp (sorry no photo, but see the final one below for a little help). The zip tie should be right against the belt clamp. Then use the 16mm bolt with a washer and nut to tighten the clamp down. Be careful to get the belt all the way in between the side of the clamp so that it doesn’t interfere with the bolt and clamp.

Wrap the belt around the pinion gear, over the bearings, and bring it back to the other side of the x carriage. Take one of the 25mm bolts, and slide it into the side (nearest the idler) of the belt clamp. Attach a nut and thread it so that it sticks about 4mm out the other end. Then attach the very small domed piece (tensioner) to the end of the bolt. Orient the tensioner so that the curved end is horizontal. See photo:

IMG_0085

Now take the belt and loop it across the top of the x carriage, around the tensioner and back along the bottom. Then take the two remaining clamps, and tighten them with the remaining 25mm bolt, washer, and nut. You need to pull the belt so that its tight, but the platform will still travel easily.

IMG_0087

 

For another view see George’s great photo.

Finally, align and tighten the X motor pinion gear:

IMG_0086

Assembling The Vision 3D Printer (Steps 12-13)

Step 12 (x axis pt1):

parts needed:

  • 1 stepper motor
  • 3 black bolts (10mm)
  • 1 pinion gear
  • X motor carriage (printed)
  • threaded rod (45mm)
  • 3 nuts
  • 3 large flat washers
  • 2 bearings
  • X idler carriage (printed)

IMG_0062

Slide the pinion gear onto the motor shaft. The set screws need to be on the outside. Don’t tighten it down yet. You will do that later. Then attach the motor to the mount with the 10mm bolts. You should orient the motor so that the cable comes out the bottom. The bolt along the bottom of the platform will be tricky because its hard to get to. I suggest getting one of the others started first, then do this one.

IMG_0064

Now take the threaded rod, and thread it into the idler carriage. As you start to thread it through, attach 1 washer and then two nuts on to the inner side (see photo below). You’ll need to add them one at a time because there is not enough space otherwise.

Counter tighten the two nuts you just added, and then slide a washer, 2 bearings, another washer, and then finally a nut on to the other end of the threaded rod. Tighten the assembly by counter tightening the two outer nuts.

IMG_0063

Step 13 (x axis pt2):

parts needed:

  • x motor assembly (step 12)
  • x idler assembly (step 12)
  • 2 smooth rods (600mm)
  • extruder carriage (printed)
  • 3 linear bearings
  • 4 black bolts (16mm)
  • 4 small flat washers
  • 3 black bolts (25mm)
  • 7 black nuts

IMG_0065

Slide in the 3 linear bearings into the extruder carriage. Then attach the 25mm bolts and nuts told hold them in place. Don’t tighten yet.

IMG_0066

Now slide the two rods into the holes on the X-motor assembly. This might take a lot of pressure. You want the ends of the rod to be flush with the outside of the plastic. The slide the extruder carriage onto the two rods. Make sure it is oriented the right way. You want the tabs for the belt clamps facing the back (by the motor), and you want the linear bearings facing down. See the photo below for details. Finally, slide the rods into the idler assembly. This might also take a lot of force, and if you go too far, you can use some large channel locks (big wrench) to push them flush again.

IMG_0067

Before you are done, you need to install the 4 (16mm) bolts with washers and nuts into the two assemblies and tighten them up. If the extruder carriage slides back and forth smoothly, you should tighten up the 3 bolts holding the linear bearing in place.

Assembling The Vision 3D Printer (Steps 7-11)

Step 7 (heated build platform pt1):

parts needed:

  • 5 black bolts (25mm)
  • 7 black bolts (16mm)
  • 12 black nuts
  • 8 small flat washers
  • 4 printed bearing mounts (see photo)
  • 4 linear bearings
  • plywood panel

IMG_0039

Take the 4 linear bearings and slide them into the printed bearing mounts. Then take the 25mm bolts and push them through the top hole of the mount. Make sure to slide the bolt in the right side. One side is round, and the other is hex for the nut to slide into (nut trap). After the bolt is in, attach a nut to the bolt, line it up with the nut trap, and use the pliers to pop it into place. Repeat this for all 4 bearing mounts.

IMG_0040

The bearing mounts attach to the wood platform with 7 small bolts (16mm), and  a single 25mm bolt. Look at the parts photo above and the panel photo below to see which one is the longer bolt. The hole is marked in each photo. Insert all the bolts with washers into the holes first:

IMG_0041

Then flip the plywood panel over, and install the 4 bearing mounts with the nuts. Orient the mounts so that the nuts face the outer edge of the platform.

IMG_0042

Step 8 (heated build platform pt2):

parts needed:

  • 4 bolts (25mm)
  • 4 small flat washers
  • 8 nuts
  • 2 printed belt clamps (see photo)
  • 1 really long belt
  • plywood platform

IMG_0043

Using a razor blade, cut the belt in half between two teeth:

IMG_0044

Then just like the previous step, slide the 4 (25mm) bolts with washers into the inner most holes on the platform. Flip the board over and attach the two belt clamps. NOTE: Make sure the smooth side of the clamp is upward. The rough side should grip the belts teeth. Slide one end of the belt under the back clamp (one closest to all the remaining holes). Leave a few teeth sticking out on one end and the rest of the belt should be centered sticking out the back side. See the photo for clarity.

IMG_0045

With the belt in place, lock down two nuts on each bolt, making sure the clamp is very tight. For the front clamp, attach the nuts, but don’t tighten it yet. You will need a gap so that you can attach the other end of the belt in a later step.

IMG_0046

Step 9 (heated build platform pt3):

parts needed:

  • assembled plywood platform
  • 12 small zip ties
  • 28 small flat washers
  • 4 bolts (25mm)
  • 4 nuts
  • 1 cardboard square (25mm)
  • PCB heat bed (with thermistor installed)

IMG_0047

Loop two zip ties through the holes between the cable and the bearing mounts. Take a 3rd zip tie, and push it through the inner hole next to the back zip ties. Bend a kink in it so that it doesn’t fall out later. See photo for exact placement of the 3 zip ties:

IMG_0048

If you need to install your thermistor, do so now following Matt’s video.

Now flip the PCB heat bed face down (lines facing the ground), and install the 4 bolts from the back. Then stack 6 washers on each bolt. NOTE: washers have two side, rounded, and the other flat. Stack all the washers so that the flat side is up. Repeat this for all 4 bolts, and then place the cardboard on the PCB heat bed:

IMG_0049IMG_0050

Now place the plywood platform on top of the 4 bolts. It should be oriented so that the PCB wires and zip ties are on the same side together. Push the 4 bolts through the corresponding holes in the platform and then add a washer and nut to each and tighten. NOTE: If the bolts don’t easily slide through, turn them by hand from the bottom to get them started, then flip the assembly over and screw them all the way down.

IMG_0051

Finally, put the wires through the zip ties so that they act as a strain relief. See the photo below for how they should go. With those in place, use the remaining zip ties to bundle the cables together so they act as a single 3 wire cable. Again, see the photos for details.

IMG_0052

Step 10 (mounting the X platform):

parts needed:

  • heated build platform
  • frame assembly
  • 2 smooth rods (400mm)
  • 2 zip ties

This step is all about alignment. Slide the 2 rods into the linear bearings on the heated build platform. They should slide easily back and forth. If they don’t, then you need to adjust the 4 bearing mounts until they do. Once everything is smooth there, tighten down the 4 bolts holding in the linear bearings.

Center the platform on the two rods, and slide the rods into the back side bar clamps on the frame. Make sure they are sticking out a bit, then slide the rods into the front clamps. At this point the rods should be flush with both the back and front clamps. Nothing should be tightened.

Hand tighten the bar clamps so that they will stay in place, and move the platform to the back side of the printer frame. Use the digital calipers to make sure the two rods are centered. NOTE: This needs to be exact!

IMG_0054 IMG_0053

Now loosen and re-tighten the bar clamps. Tighten the bar clamps slowly by alternating 1/8 turn on each nut. This will keep the clamps from moving the bar too far in either direction. The platform cannot bind when it gets to the end of the track. If it does, you need to restart the processes. Once everything is tight and the platform travels freely, measure again to make sure you are still centered.

Now repeat this process for the other side. NOTE: It might be helpful to lock the calipers in place so that you can move it between the 4 points making sure that everything is aligned.

IMG_0055

Turn the printer upside down, and slide the platform all the way to the back. Attach the 3 wire cable from step 9 to the center rod and the back bottom rod (see the photo below). You don’t want much slack with the platform all the way back since this is the most cable it will need. Also, I roughly lined up the cable with the smooth bar above so that it stays out of the belt’s way:

IMG_0056

Step 11 (motoring the X platform):

parts needed:

  • 3 bolts (10mm)
  • 1 pinion gear
  • 1 stepper motor
  • printer assembly

IMG_0057

Attach the stepper motor with the 3 bolts. Orient the motor so that the wires are on the top front face. Then attach the pinion gear to the stepper motor.

IMG_0060

Now loop the belt around the motor and front bearing, then slide it through the belt camp and pull it tight. Push the belt clamp down and lightly tighten the nuts. At this point the platform shouldn’t take much force to move, but also not slip. Its a careful balance between the two. Once you think you have it right, tighten the nuts on the belt clamp, and then cut the belt leaving a little extra in case you have to adjust the tension later.

IMG_0061

Assembling the Vision 3D Printer (Steps 4-6)

Step 4 (mounting the Z motors):

Parts needed:

  • 2 stepper motors (1 with long cable)
  • 2 printed motor mounts (see photo)
  • 8 black bolts (10mm long)
  • 8 flat washers (the small ones)
  • 2 foam motor insulators

IMG_0026

IMG_0029

The only trick in this step is to be careful about the orientation of the stepper motors. You want your stepper motors mounted so that the cables coming out the side are pointing the right way:

IMG_0028

Note: the orientation of the motor with the long cable is different from the other.

Update: Its easier if you also attach the hose clamp and Z-rod brackets from Steps 14 & 16 now.

Step 5 (frame pt2):

parts needed:

  • assembled frame
  • 2 long threaded rods (488mm)
  • 1 motor assembly (short cable)
  • 10 nuts
  • 12 washers

Slide the two rods through ones side of the frame, and before you get to the other, add a washer, 2 nuts, and then another washer:

IMG_0030

Then keep sliding the rod through the other side until it sticks out 72mm on the left. Add a washer and nut and tighten them down squeezing the acrylic in-between. Then add another washer, the motor assembly, and a washer and nut and tighten again:

IMG_0031

Finally, measure the distance between the top and bottom of the side walls and make sure they are the same. You want your walls to be parallel!

IMG_0032

Once everything is squared up, tighten down the nuts on the right hand side.

Step 6 (frame pt3):

parts needed:

  • assembled frame
  • 6 nuts
  • 8 washers
  • 1 motor assembly (long cable)
  • 1 long threaded rod (488mm)

IMG_0034

In this step you attach the right side motor assembly just like the left. Then slide the last long threaded rod through the bottom center hole, attaching the washer and nuts like before:

IMG_0035

Again, you want the lower rod sticking out roughly 72mm on each end. Tighten up the nuts and your done. NOTE: It looks like the design may have changed from the vision photos. I think the bottom rod may need a bearing in the center as well. I’ll update this page once I know for sure.

IMG_0036

Thats it for today, I now need to go take care of other things..

Assembling The Vision 3D Printer (Steps 1-3)

I decided to go ahead and start assembling the 3d printer despite not having any instructions (yet). Most of what I have done so far was from looking at the photos, videos, and directions from these links:

http://vision3dprinter.blogspot.com

http://www.youtube.com/user/Vision3dPrinter

http://reprap.org/wiki/Prusa_Mendel_Build_Manual

Step 1 (front bearing updated from Matt Underwood):

Parts needed:

  • threaded rod (348mm long)
  • 6 nuts (the larger ones in the kit)
  • 6 flat washers (19mm OD)
  • 2 fender washers (32mm OD)
  • 1  2 bearing
  • 2 printed bar clamps

Divide the length of the bar into 4, and mark 3 lines on the threaded rod (centered and evenly spaced). Mark a center line on the rod, and then mark two lines 74mm from the center. These will be your center points for the bearing and two bar clamps. See the 3 photos below for how they are assembled:

IMG_0037

For the bearing, I simply made sure it was centered on the threaded rod. I installed the bearings with the middle line between the two. To line up the bar clamps, I drew my lines with a sharpie and then made sure that the lines were centered between the sides of the bar clamps.

IMG_0038

Step 2 (back motor mount):

Parts Needed:

  • 8 flat washers
  • 8 nuts
  • 2 threaded rods (348mm)
  • 1 printed motor adapter (see photo)
  • 2 printed bar clamps

The motor mount needs to be positioned so that its inner edge will be 10mm from the center of the threaded rod. This will line up the stepper motor’s pinion gear so that its centered on the rod and lines up with the bearing from step 1. NOTE: Make sure that the recessed areas on the motor mount (for the motor bolts) are facing the center of the threaded rod. You want your motor off to the side.

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The bar clamps should be mounted on the top rod just like in step 1. These photos do not show the two extra bearings that are needed. They should be centered like in step 1, and with 1 washer separating them from the motor mount.

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Step 3 (bottom frame):

Parts Needed:

  • 14 flat washers
  • 14 nuts
  • front bearing assembly
  • rear motor assembly
  • 1 threaded rod (348mm)
  • 2 acrylic side walls

I simply attached the two assemblies and extra threaded rod as shown in the photo. The only thing I did to align the rods and walls was to keep the outer nuts at the end of each rod so that the walls are as far apart as possible.

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Ignore the 3 long threaded rods and extra nuts/washers in the photo. I decided to put those on in a separate step (you’ll see why).

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Note the alignment above. I did this for each threaded rod I installed.

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Once I had the assemblies and threaded rods installed on one wall, I carefully lined them up, and installed the other acrylic wall. NOTE: You want the vision text to be toward the front of the print on both side walls.

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OK, time for a coffee break…