In this time of remote learning, access to manufacturing tools for students is limited. Ordering a part and having it shipped to you will not replace the exciting feeling of watching it being formed before your eyes or the frustrating but valuable lessons of it failing to properly manufacture your part. To combat these lost experiences, I wanted to design, manufacture, and assemble a moderately low cost 3D Printer that can be hopefully be recreated by engineering students, or anyone with a passion for making, to supplement the lost educational experiences and provide them with the tools to create and innovate in their daily lives.
With the help of an Innovation Catalysts grant through the Jacobs Institute at UC Berkeley, I was able to make this 3D printer a reality. Additionally, I wanted to give this machine the ability to transform into a desktop CNC (computer numerical control) mill, however I did not have enough time this semester. I plan on continuing down this route in the future.
One of the first successful prints
First Iteration CAD Second Iteration CAD
When I first began this project, I combed through the vast resources of the internet and was very daunted by the wide range of DIY 3D printer projects and designs. Because I was not looking to reinvent the wheel, I based my models off of open source 3D printers to create a design that I believed was feasible and not too complex for a first time maker of a 3D printer. I spent a lot of time on my first iteration which was very detailed but proved to be too costly. I then started from scratch with a second iteration and replaced the original aluminum frame with a cheaper wooden laser cut frame as well improved designs for the 3D printed components to obtain the second iteration of the model.
Successful Auto Home and Bed Leveling
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