Motorcycles, tools, and garages! A little bit of everything mechanical and technical.

Friday, March 29, 2013

From Zero to PRINTS!

So I have been working on making a "Quick Start" guide for a week or two now to hopefully make it easier for those who have never had the opportunity to mess with one to get started.  This is by no means a finished product, nor would I consider it comprehensive and all inclusive, but I think this is a pretty good outline of what it takes to go from zero knowledge to 3D prints.  

This is only a backbone for now.  A lot of these sections have already been covered in many of my posts / blogs, so I will format and add all of those pieces of information in to this outline and we'll see how it turns out. 

3D Printing Quick Start Guide

Printer Kit and Parts Selection

1.    What are you going to use your printer for?
2.     How much do you have to spend?
3.    Where do you start?

Assembling the Kit

1.    Frame
2.    X-axis
3.    Y-axis
4.    Z-axis
5.    Bits and Pieces

Installing the Electronics

1.    Stepper motors
2.    Power Supply
3.    Control Board
4.    Wire routing
5.    Bits and Pieces
a.    Power switch
b.    USB cable

Installing Software and setting up printer

1.    Drivers
2.    Firmware
3.    Software
4.    Connecting the printer
5.    Setting stepper driver voltage
6.    Manually controlling the printer


1.    G92
2.    G01
3.    G90
4.    Etc…

File Preperation

1.  Export file from your CAD software as an .stl.
2.  Open file in Netfabb and repair.
3.  Open repaired file in Slic3r and create gcode.
4.  Open in Printer Controller Software and PRINT!

Running a Print

1.  Plug printer in to computer and power.
2.  Open Printer Controller Software and click “Connect”.
3.  Prep the print bed.
4.  Preheat the Extruder and Bed
5.  Load your file.
6.  Set the home position.
7.  Click PRINT and watch the show!
8.  Clear the print bed.
9.  Run the next part!


1.    Missed steps
2.    Printer freezing
3.    Poor print quality
4.    Etc….

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