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Any makers here with kids or grandkids who would like a "toy" printer?

Posted by mchahn 
Any makers here with kids or grandkids who would like a "toy" printer?
February 23, 2021 02:05PM
I came up with an idea for a toy printer that would cost approx $70 for a compete kit, or less for a self-printed kit. The extruder is a syringe for medium-viscosity materials like silicone, tacky glue, sugar icing, etc. (aka paste extruder or pastruder). It would have cheap geared motors (28BYJ-48) for each of XYZE axes. There would be no limit switches, belts, heaters, etc. I am designing a simple 4-motor driver board that accepts normal gcode. In other words it is a real 3D printer but slow and sloppy.

My original goal was for it to be a toy for kids to use and learn from by themselves. In hindsight this was stupid. When I got to the software part I realized something like Cura would still be needed which made it unusable for young kids. Also, we are all aware of how much fidgeting and tweaking is required for any 3D printer.

So now I'm thinking that it would be for geek (maker) parents who want to use it as a learning tool and fun project with their kids/grandkids. I myself am definitely going to build one for my grandkids who are now 5 and 7.

So this message is sort of a poll. Are there any other parents who would be interested in such thing? Or maybe even a weekend project for just yourself?

It would be open-source HW and SW of course. I would sell the boards, mostly as a convenience since it will have three or four SMD parts. I would also sell a bag with all the hardware, like motors, bolts, pulleys, etc. I might offer complete kits that include the plastic. I am retired and have no desire to take the effort to make a lot of money so the prices would be reasonable.
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