Friday, March 26, 2010

Reprap on the move

My reprap will go to Antwerpen tomorrow, to help some students with their work. They also help me repair the reprap, because I dont have so much time myself and I really want to make a mendel for summer.

Does anyone know where I can find a BOM of all the plastic parts?

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

CF & TMFS, horrible combination and more...

Well, after a good time waiting and trouble, I gave up currently with using a CF as a replacement for the HDD. Its installing everything perfectly, but it wont start to boot, so the whole thing is stuck at BIOS level, giving me errors and driving me nuts. Google is not a good help either...

I havent found a way around it, except for using a mobile CD-rom drive who does the trick fortunately. This also means that if you have a system pre-installed on a CD-rom it will work fine. Thank god Torvalds knew that any media is usable for a pc system.

My reprap is currently in repair, the Y-belt went loose (again) and I didnt had the time to repair it. More busy with school than using the reprap lately.

School is considering to buy a reprap for drilling PCB's quickly and fast. Anyone got experience with it, and some howto guide? I am thinking about drilling holes & lanes, and maybe silkscreening it too (with a finepoint marker). Since I dont know python, it will be very hard for me to write some code for it. I hate to get my hands dirty in toxic material ;)

I also noted that my postings are listed on the great wall of reprap related blogs. Good to know for when I am posting more...

Sunday, November 1, 2009

TMFS is working... Now I need to install stuff.

Its finally working :) I thought it never would, but its really there. The machine is currently powered by a 12V backup battery, only needed to solder 2 wires for the power. Its powered by a car battery, but I soldered a cigarette power supply on it.
This is my current setup. As you can see its currently installing windows XP on the SSD (Solid State Disk).
The setup is as follows:
In the bottom you can see the power device, together with a red and black wire. There is also a white wire, but thats purely for when its used in the car. The device powers the motherboard (shown on the right) with 1.6Ghz of power. Its pure overkill, but who cares?

In the top is a CF drive, I could also use a CD-player or something else, but I found out that this is the best way to handle bumpy roads.

The total costs are classified at this moment, but I can tell you that this is just the core... It will contain lots more. The final system will be using ubuntu linux, because the keys for vista and windows 7 are not that cheap.

The box that this setup is on will be my main box, only need to find a way to get everything screwed in there.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

New project: TMFS

Its been a long time since I posted something, but it doesnt mean I am not working on making new projects that do concern the reprap.

I am currently working on a brand new project called the "Transportable Multi Functional System". I would call it the pc-in-a-box, but TMFS did sound a bit better for me. At this current moment the cost for it all is estimated at 250 euro barebone (without casing), and will run on a car battery. Its a complete server with a CF-card for the hard drive. I am not sure how much power it actually will drain from the car, because I havent checked it yet with a multimeter, but I try to keep it as low as possible. If people want one too, be patient, maybe I will sell clones.

I am sure that it cant beat a mini-laptop (its too expensive), but it is suitable for the following things:
1. Sentry turret for paintball/airsoft (am planning on building this one)
2. Reprap managment system (just put it in the back of your car and let it control the reprap, while you are making new items in the passenger seat and sending it to the back)
3. Wardriving (laptops in the front of the car are a rare sight, and can easely be spotted by cops. With the casing around it they cant blame you of wardriving, even if you open it).
4. Webserver-on-the-road (Just drive, and everyone with iphone/laptop can connect to it on the road)

The complete prototype that I am building will contain the following parts in a hard casing:
1. A special 12V DC-DC converter
2. 4gig CF harddrive
3. mini ATX motherboard with 2gig ram

4. Wireless
5. GPS unit
6. Bluetooth
7. Arduino
8. Custom software

If someone can make a good logo to put on the case, then I would gladly appreciate it if you could send it to me.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

wire glue, the next reprap revolution?

Because I got so much to do lately (helping an airsoft organiser and bottling homemade beer) I got not that much time to spend on my reprap and designing stuff. Its annoying, but thats how life goes when you dont have much money to spend.

It doesnt mean that I wont check stuff regulary to see if there is something new. I found something I like to share with all the reprappers around here. Its called "wire glue", and its on sale on amazon and thinkgeek. It comes in small bottles, but I am sure it can also put in syringes. Maybe a good alternative to solder?

I am not sure about the conductivity, but they say it can be used instead of solder, and the conductivity is pretty good. Who knows what comes next?

Sunday, July 5, 2009


I am on holiday for a couple of weeks, my girlfriend has arrived from Turkey and I want to spend July with her. This doesnt mean I will not continue with designing. I will be more busy than ever in August. I found out that the biggest part that needs to be reprapped is the X-axis, so that will be the biggest part I need to make. The rest is smaller, so I can conserve a lot of space.

I hope you have a happy holiday too, because I will return with pictures containing my ideas.

Monday, June 15, 2009

I miss my reprap already

Well, its almost a day since I had to leave my reprap, and I miss it already. During those hours that I could work with the reprap, I did do several things and modifications:

1. Since my Z-axis doesnt work so well (in fact it doesnt work at all, its off by 5mm) I am using a normal kitchen knife to make sure it touches the endstop. Need to replace it with something better.
2. The Y-axis (the one with the 2 bands on it) has the terrible problem of getting loose at one end... I dunno why, but the connection with the stepper motor doesnt work, and it results in the stuff sliding off. Fixed this problem with superglue (and almost glued myself too).
3. Stuff keeps falling off, especially bolts and washers. Most of the time I dont know where it came from, so I wait until the machine is finished, check every bolt on the axis and put it back on. Handy if you have spares.
4. I really need to put the holder for filament back on. Every 30 min. I can untangle the stupid wire.
5. Note to me: That white dust you see is not cocaïne, its ABS. Its scraped off from the filament when going through the extruder.
6. Never make more than 1 piece at a time or never make a bridge, unless you have nail remover to clean it. When the reprap goes from one side to another, it tends to leave a small piece of filament behind. Its not neat. Will post picture when I get home.

Also stuff I want to do:
1. Make a bell on the fan... When the reprap is finished, I believe the fan stops. Ideal moment to put a bell on it, so when I am busy with something else it gets ringing when its done. No more problems of useless waiting time.
2. See if I can make a "mini reprap". And with "mini" I really mean "mini", complete with a mini arduino or PIC (mini sized) to make it all work. I am sure that in the end the electronics will be bigger than the machine itself, but its worth the try... When I hear Adrian talking about "using a Sanguino or ATMega" I am thinking: Why not make it smaller? You only need the size of the biggest part for a normal reprap as your maximum printing size, if you want to conserve as much space as possible (especially in student's homes). And with space reduction, there is also the possibility of making the reprap that small that instead of iron bars we can also reprap plastic counterparts... Also thought about moduling the Darwin. Since Darwin is square, and if I combine that with the latest invention (something to put the extruder motor somewhere else so you can conserve space on top) you can also make it so that you have several modules on top of each other, without problems. Let Adrian Bowyer do the big research work, I want to do the small research work. I hope someone can help me to reduce the reprap to at least half the size of a normal reprap, would be cool to see the reprap downgraded to a bare minimum.