FoldaRap Build Manual

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FoldaRap Documentation
Index | | How to get FoldaRap | How to build FoldaRap | How To Use FoldaRap | FoldaRap improvements

Tools required

  • 1,5 mm hexagonal wrench (for the pulleys grub screw)
  • 2 mm hexagonal wrench (for M3 counterksunk bolts and pneumatic fittings "MA-12-03-M5")
  • 2,5 mm hexagonal wrench (for normal M3 cap-head bolts and the rounded M4 bolts used for the frame)
  • a flat screwdriver (for the psu's screw terminals)
  • s small screwdriver (to set the drivers current)

You may need also :

  • a 5,5mm flat spanner or a small pliers (for m3 nuts)
  • something to cut wires, and strip them (knife, automatic striper, etc.)
  • a lighter for the heat-shrink sleeves
  • soldering iron (to eventually solder the endstops)
  • small files (round, flat) to eventually ream the printed parts
  • a glue gun (gluing the endstop on the printed part is easier/quicker than using bolts)
  • a multimeter (to set the drivers current)


Previous Version

The build manual for the FoldaRap 1 is here.

General tips

  • Read the whole manual once or twice before starting, to get an overview of the build
    • Basically we have a main frame and several sub-assemblies, some can be done in parallel : gather your friends and establish a record for minimum building time ! (Actual best record : 4 hours)
  • Work on a cutting mat if you have one, it will protect your table plus they often show a millimetre grid that will be useful to check the bolts length (with some experience you will recognize them just by looking or holding one).
  • Place you mouse over a picture in a list if you wonder what part it is
  • In case of doubt, don't hesitate to have a look at the 3d model in Sketchup (before/during the build), even if about a next version of the machine it will show you the folded/unfolded state of the machine and you can play around with it :)
Ok let's start
It should take approximately 12 hours to put everything together.
From step 1 to 4 : 2-4 hours

Know the parts

Firstly, have a look at all the part and learn what everything is.

How to insert a T-nut

T-nut insertion.jpg Tightening torque : 2.5 Nm (+/- 5%)

Base Frame

Rear Base

Foldarap2 foot-rear-left.jpg x1 foot-rear-left Foldarap2 foot-rear-right.jpg x1 foot-rear-right 20x20 200mm.jpg x2 200mm profile M4x8 round-head.jpg x4 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x4 t-nut

Front Base

Foldarap2 foot-front-left.jpg x1 foot-front-left Foldarap2 foot-front-right.jpg x1 foot-front-right 20x20 200mm.jpg x2 200mm profile M4x8 round-head.jpg x2 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x2 t-nut

Base Frame

Foldarap frame rear assembled.jpg x1 rear assembly Foldarap2 frame front assembled.jpg x1 front assembly Foldarap2 hinge-inner-left.jpg x1 hinge-inner-left Foldarap2 hinge-inner-right.jpg x1 hinge-inner-right

20x20 300mm.jpg x4 300mm profile M4x8 round-head.jpg x10 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x10 t-nut


FoldaRap y-idler 603zz.jpg y-idler M3x20.jpg x1 m3x20 623zz.jpg x2 603zz bearing M3 washer.jpg x2 m3 washer M4x8 round-head.jpg x2 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x2 t-nut



Foldarap y-motor.jpg x1 y-motor C14 CEI male-plug.jpg x1 plug M3 nut.jpg x2 m3 nut M3x8.jpg x2 m3x8


M3x8.jpg x2 m3x8 Nema14.jpg x1 nema 14 stepper motor Pulley-T2.5 paopart.jpg x1 pulley


6,35mm-faston-ferule.jpg x7 ferules 6432-heatshrink-sleeve.jpg heat-shrink sleeve Big-blue-power-switch RS-5287858.jpg x1 switch M4x8 round-head.jpg x3 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x3 t-nut

A part of the wiring depend of the combination of electronic board and power supply, for other version : FoldaRap_power-supplies


Z-Left / Z-Right

Foldarap2 hinge-outer-left.jpg x1 hinge-outer-left Foldarap2 hinge-outer-right.jpg x1 hinge-outer-right Foldarap2 z-motor-bracket-left.jpg x1 z-motor-left Foldarap2 z-motor-bracket-right.jpg x1 z-motor-right

20x20 300mm.jpg x2 300mm profile M4x8 round-head.jpg x4 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x4 t-nut


Nema14.jpg x2 nema14 M3x8.jpg x4 m3x8


FoldaRap2 base-frame assembled.jpg FoldaRap2 Z-axis 08.jpg M3x20.jpg x2 m3x20 M3 nut.jpg x2 m3 nut


Power Supply

Different kind of power supply have been used in FoldaRap builds, if you don't recognize yours look at this page : FoldaRap power-supplies

Anyway, the principle is always 1) bolt the power supply on the plate, 2) then the plate on the base of the frame

120W ledproject power supply.jpg x1 power supply M3x8.jpg x2 m3x8 M3 nut.jpg x2 m3 nut

Foldarap2 underplate.jpg x1 lasercut underplate M4x8 round-head.jpg x3 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x3 t-nut

Z-axis position

M4x8 round-head.jpg x4 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x4 t-nut


Foldarap2 Z-slider-left.jpg z-slider-left Foldarap2 Z-slider-right.jpg z-slider-right



Foldarap2 X-slider.jpg x-slider Nema14.jpg x1 nema14 stepper motor Timing pulley.jpg x1 pulley

M3x30.jpg x4 623zz.jpg x2 603zz bearing M3 washer.jpg x4 (if needed)


FoldaRap2 X-slider fan-holder.jpg fan-holder M3x30.jpg x1 m3x25


20x20 200mm.jpg x1 200mm profile T2.5belt.jpg x1 250mm belt M4x8 round-head.jpg x2 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x2 t-nut


M4x8 round-head.jpg x2 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x2 t-nut

Z-rods (need update)

M5 nut.jpg x4 M5 nylon nut 230-235mm threaded-rod.jpg x2 M5 threaded rod 230mm Flexible-coupling.jpg x2 flexible coupling

Extruder(s) (need update)

Foldarap2 extruder-left nema14.jpg extruder-left and/or Foldarap2 extruder-right nema14.jpg extruder-right

Nema14.jpg x1 nema14 stepper motor M3x8.jpg x2 m3x8 Maritime-models drive-gear.jpg x1 knurled insert (juste one)

Pneumatic-fitting MA1203M5.jpg x1 pneumatic-fitting

M3x16.jpg x1 m3x16 M3x20.jpg x1 m3x20 623zz.jpg x1 603zz bearing

M3x35.jpg x2 Foldarap extruder-spring RS751483.jpg x2 M3 nut.jpg x2

Top-frame (need update)

Foldarap2 z-top-left.jpg x1 Foldarap2 z-top-right.jpg x1 20x20 200mm.jpg x1 M4x8 round-head.jpg x4 T-nut.jpg x4

FoldaRap-handle.jpg x1 M4x8 round-head.jpg x2 T-nut.jpg x2

Reprap-org plate 160mm.jpg x1 M4x8 round-head.jpg x2 T-nut.jpg x2

Great ! You are almost done !

FoldaRap2 almost-there.jpg

Have a pause, you need to be relaxed for the next step, or you can also just head to the end :)



FoldaRap-hotend Barrel 00.jpg x1 barrel FoldaRap-hotend Heatsink-block.jpg x1 heatsink-block Pneumatic-fitting MA1203M5.jpg x1 pneumatic-fitting Tubing.jpg x1 ptfe tubing (300-330 mm)


FoldaRap-hotend nozzle.jpg x1 nozzle FoldaRap-hotend Heater-block.jpg x1 heater-block Cartridge-heater.jpg x1 cartridge-heater Thermistor 100k.jpg x1 thermistor 100k ohm


Housing flat 2pin.jpg x2 2pin housing Female-crimp-terminal.jpg x4 female crimp terminal

  • thermistor wires : +/- 70cm
  • fan : prolongated to match +/- 70cm

Electronic Board

Previous instructions for the AzteegX1 / Melzi

Minitronicsv1.jpg x1 Foldarap board-mount.jpg x1 board-mount M3x8.jpg x2 m3x8 M4x8 round-head.jpg x2 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x2 t-nut


Now lets plug everything to the board !


The Minitronics_10 page is well documented and the wiring should be quite easy with the male/female connectors.

  • The drivers seems to use the same voltage reference as for a pololu (so we need to tune them between 0.4 - 0.5 V )


  1. cut wires
  2. solder wires
  3. insulate
  4. crimp
  5. casing
  6. in place
  7. wiring


Micro-switch with-lever.jpg x1

glued on the side


Micro-switch with-lever.jpg x1 Zipties.jpg x1 zip-tie


Micro-switch with-lever.jpg x1 M4x8 round-head.jpg x1 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x1 t-nut Zipties.jpg x1 zip-tie


  • Y-motor
  • Z-motors
  • X-motor
  • Extruder-motor


  • thermistor (blue 70cm)
  • heater
  • fan : on a 12v pin (must be always on)


  • printed-part cooling fan: on the "cooling fan" screw terminal (turned on by sending Mcode "M106 Sxxx" (xxx being between 0 and 255), turned off by "M107" but Slic3r automate this)


Finish by this one, as it is moving, the wires need to be above all the other wires.

  • thermistor (blue 35cm)
  • peltier


  • spiral wrapping band : for the wires that came out of the base.




If you have an aluminium heated bed look at this page : FoldaRap_Heated-Bed

Foldarap1.1 bed-plate.jpg x1 M3x30 countersunk-head.jpg x3 M3 nut.jpg x3


Other versions : FoldaRap1.0_y-carriage

Foldarap y-carriage lasercut.jpg x1 LM6UU.jpg x3 Zipties.jpg x4

Foldarap belt-clamp.jpg x1 T2.5belt.jpg x1 (600mm) M3x12.jpg x2 M3 nut.jpgx2 M3 washer.jpg x2

M3 nut nylock.jpgx3 Bed springs RS751455.jpg x3


Smooth-rod-300mm.jpg x2 Micro-switch with-lever.jpg x1 (with 32cm green wires for y-endstop) Zipties.jpg x6

Tape (5-10 min)

  • Kapton (polyimide) or blue tape (= outside masking tape, uv resistant usually with acrylic adhesive, PLA stick well to acrylic)

Leveling the bed and zeroing

The Z-zero is made when leveling the bed.

  1. Start by roughly leveling it
  2. then move the nozzle to the lowest point
  3. and adjust the 3 screws to level it regarding that height (by turning them until the homing move stop lowering the bed)
  4. repeat on each corners so the zero is exactly when the nozzle stop touching the bed (true for the four corners+center)

  • I like to start with the X direction at the right bolt, then with the two at the left

Here is a video to show what I mean by "the homing move stop lowering the bed"
"Bad" (the bolts need to be tightened)

  • Once the plan is set from left to right you can check front/end
  • after that it's supposed to be leveled but may need few more tweaking for the right corners

Software side

  • Skeinforge : you will only have to add a little offset (altitude), to have the desired height for the first layer, usually the same as your layer height.
  • Slic3r : leave z-offset at 0, it will add one layer height automatically (you still may have to adjust it slightly to fine tune the Z-zero, depending on where your endstop have been glued).

Another advantage of that : by moving to the center of the bed from the zero height, the nozzle is also wiped by the side of the bed from any purged plastic ;-)

Go go go first print !!!

FoldaRap007 first-print.jpg

This article will probably help you along your first print :)

Also have a look at the User Manual