So you want to build a 3D printer?

Crypt-Cube

IN THE BEGINNING

A little over 4 years ago I enter the world of 3D printing. Like most people I was excited to try this revolutionary technology that would give me the power to create just about anything my mind could conjure into existence. My first printer was an Anet A8, which I still use to this day for PLA prints. Say what you want about this model printer but the fact is once the bed is level it prints! Every single time without fail! I printed everything I could, from fidget spinners to electric coil forms. The experience was one which was awesome and had me wanting more. The first year consisted of hundreds of prints, which are scattered all over my office. Trinkets and spoils of a revolution.

MY FIRST BUILD

About 3 years ago I began building my first 3D printer, I called it C3DO. I went all in linear rails, ballscrews, enclosure, the whole nine yards. In the end I was left with a massive printer capable of printing items with dimensions of 330mm x 330mm x 690mm. It was amazing but I still found myself going back to the Anet A8 because in reality I wasn’t printing anything with even close to those dimensions. Two years went by and the C3DO collects dust 95% of the time. Print heads are flaky and require constant attention. The printer itself if huge standing 5 feet tall and weighing enough to never want to move it. I needed something different!

THE NEW AND IMPROVED

Nearly a year ago I began my second 3D printer Crypt-Cube this time would be different I would take everything I had learned about 3D printer and combine the best of both worlds in one sleek package that could do everything I wanted to do and would become my main reliable printer. This printer would utilize ball screws, print at higher temperatures, employ a more reliable controller, and meet my size requirements.

Over the course of 4 years I’ve learned many things about building 3D Printers. In short, costs add up quick and nothing ever goes as planned the first go around. Most of the time you redesign something because you think you can make it better if you just change that one element! In truth the first design would have worked had you set “that” setting correctly the first time. Over all if you are not a tinkerer nor mechanically savvy I would recommend just buying a 3D Printer and let someone else deal with the details you could care less about and just have fun printing!

TIPS FOR THE PERFECT PRINT

  • BED ADHESION
  • LEVEL BED CORRECTLY
  • FIRST LAYER PRINT SPEED
  • CORRECT TEMP SETTINGS
  • SURFACE AREA
So you want to build a 3D printer?

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