A proper “boy’s puzzle”
A proper “boy’s puzzle”

A proper “boy’s puzzle”

A colleague got me interested in a specific 3D-printer, for sale on eBay for the modest sum of 149£ + p&p. For quite a while getting a 3D-printer has been on my todo-list; now was the time. So I went ahead and bought it:

Looking at the picture above, you might think that this doesn’t look so bad. What  the advert failed to mention though, was that the device was delivered as a kit in no less than 58 little plastic bags + all the bigger bits. In excess of 500 components. An almost-from-scratch-assembly awaited me.

Something like three working days and several headaches later, I had my first printout.

Did I have fun doing the assembly? Oh yeah. But I’m not sure I’d recommend my friends to follow suit. I’d like to keep them as my friends…

The upside to doing it myself is that I now have an understanding of how the thing works and where it may exhibit features worthy of improvement. A wonderful toy; unwieldy, smelling, looks like something not to be fiddled with – yet is exactly that! Sooo much to poke at and tinker with.

Right now I’m in the process of figuring out how to do an upgrade to the printer’s firmware; the program that makes the motors move and hot things become hot at the right time. Simultaneously, I have to work with the other bits of software – the slicer that generates directions for the motor-mover to follow and the design-software that generates a 3D-model for the slicer to slice. All three have to work together AND the mechanics have to be setup and calibrated before I can hope for a good result.


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