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Some advise please

Posted by mjmeans 
Some advise please
March 26, 2015 01:43AM
Hello. I've been reading this and other forums and I see frequent posts about calibrating and problems with calibration and adjusting spacing screws and other issues. I'm new to 3D technology but I'm looking for something that will print the thousandth print with equal quality to the first without ever needing to fiddle with calibration or adjustments of any kind between the first and the thousandth print. In other words, I'm not looking for a hobby, I'm looking for a tool.

I want something that I can use to print ABS models up to 8x6x3" as simple as: 1) make or download the model, 2) load the ABS filament, 3) press the print button. ... (Yes, I realize that making [designing] a model can be a very time consuming process depending on the complexity of the model).

I'm fine with electronic assembly of the unit and I'm more than proficient with soldering. I have a hot air soldering station and regularly hand solder .050 spacing QFP chips to circuits cards. I have designed and built USB sensors and have over a million lines of software code behind me, but I'm not looking to add yet another "job" of time consuming fiddling with a finicky piece of equipment and wasted filament when something "doesn't work right". And the mechanical assembly instructions needs to be clear and complete without needing to do any research.

Is there any 3D printer design that fits these requirements?
Re: Some advise please
March 26, 2015 07:34AM
Buy an Ultimaker or a Makerbot.

Collective intelligence emerges when a group of people work together effectively. Prusa i3 Folger (A lot of the parts are wrong, boring !)
Re: Some advise please
March 26, 2015 08:29AM
Buy an Ultimaker or a Makerbot.

I'd say Ultimaker, when looking at the two winking smiley

Re: Some advise please
March 26, 2015 09:45AM
The simple answer is NOOO. You wont find a stratasys comercial machine that does not need calibration after 1000 prints, forget finding one in the consumer grade market. If you want something that precise, built yourself a beefy cnc and put a hot end on it. run flex tubes with a timer to grease the bearings and runs on a timer. It will come close, but not quite 1000's of prints.

My Personal Blog. Build blog.

Modicum V1 sold on e-bay user jaguarking11
Re: Some advise please
March 26, 2015 10:01AM
That's the right answer. There's no such thing as a 3D printer that's maintenance/adjustment free, and it will be really expensive to try to get close.
Re: Some advise please
March 26, 2015 12:23PM
Thanks for the advise. I was hoping that there was a design with the self-calibration, self-cleaning and repeatability of a $100 ink jet (or laser printer), but in 3D.
Re: Some advise please
March 26, 2015 01:07PM
Most ink jet printers, even the $100 ones, go through a lot of self calibrating before they start a print. Many 3D printers already do the bed leveling and it wouldn't be a huge task to add things like sensors to check that filament is being taken at the requested rate. Heated beds and hot ends could be checked by smart software (does it heat up from cold in a predicted time) and many other tweaks could also be done purely in software.

If the will is there for the big boys - or even the hobbyist, then I think it can be done - but it is not here yet.

Re: Some advise please
March 26, 2015 01:21PM
FWIW I have two 3D printers, a Cartesian (Ormerod) and a Delta (Kossel). The Ormerod needs occasional lubrication and occasional manual re-levelling of the bed. The Kossel seems to be maintenance-free, although I expect the Traxxas joints will eventually wear and need to be replaced. There is no manual bed levelling needed. I run auto delta calibration before each print, not because I necessarily need to, but it only takes 35 seconds so why not. So if you are looking for a low-maintenance printer, I recommend a delta.

Large delta printer [miscsolutions.wordpress.com], Robotdigg SCARA printer, Crane Quad and Ormerod

Disclosure: I design Duet electronics and work on RepRapFirmware, [duet3d.com].
Re: Some advise please
March 26, 2015 01:34PM
Automation only works as long as it works, though. On the commercial machine at work, when its bed leveling algorithm decides the build platform is bent you have no choice but to try more build platforms until you find one it likes, and it seems to be both far more susceptible to nozzle jams than my machines and far more work to clear a jam when one occurs.
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