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Thread: 3D printing

  1. #11
    Wow David, four 3D printers. With experience with four different designs you have to be the go-to guy for printer advice. I'm going to pick your brain to pieces. I've been studying and drooling for a couple years now but have yet to pull the trigger. My first inclination is DIY, but when I add up the cost of parts it seems I may as well buy a kit. Delta printers are fascinating and are the simplest to build, but by the order you listed you arsenal it seems you've moved beyond the Rostock. To me the weak link with the deltas seems to be the bowden extruder. Do you find that to be the case? The FT5 looks good, especially the price. I anxiously await your review.

  2. #12
    Moderator DavidF's Avatar
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    Im hoping the FT5 is all whipped cream and strawberries it is what i would have built if they didnt offer it in a kit already. The rostock was my first printer, and I still love it dearly. The flashforge creator I mostly use for abs prints but I really dont like its makerbot style firmware. Its a great printer, but you really need simplify 3d to go with it. The Ultimaker is pricey but if you are not mechanically inclined not into hot rods and just expect shit to work then heres your printer. These are just my opinions. I cant say that any one printer is better than the other but they have all earned my trust.
    I am far from the one you would want to advise you on printers though. Be careful though, There is alot of hype over stuff for sale in the 3d printing world.
    A calm sea does not make a skilled sailor....

  3. #13
    Senior Member r4z0r7o3's Avatar
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    Patents on a lot of the SLS tech. are expiring soon, IIRC.
    "Things that are complex are not useful, things that are useful are simple."
    - Mikhail Kalashnikov

  4. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by DavidF View Post
    Im hoping the FT5 is all whipped cream and strawberries ...
    I do too. Let us know either way. Having just paid $100 for 100 grams of prints from Shapeways, (and had to wait a week) I really think I should own a printer. The FT5 looks promising. I agree, it appears to be well engineered.

  5. #15
    Senior Member Jammer's Avatar
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    I am for turning this thread over to DavidF as a build thread for his FT-5 and to give us some pointers on 3D printing. As soon as I save up some duckets, I think I'll get a 3D printer. I really like the FT-5 nice size and looks good for things I have in mind.
    My main question is... what happens in between pulling it out of the box, and making the first part? I'm concerned with hidden costs. what type of computer, software, cables, wires etc. do I need?
    I just don't want to drop $500 on the machine and then find out the software is $500 and I have to have a windows 10 desktop to run the whole thing.
    And all of the 3D guys chime in. Tell us the truth about the 3D world.

  6. #16
    if it just uses a simple electronics board running something like marlin firmware, which mainly all 3d printers use anymore, the only real cost you'd really have is just the printer and filament. The software, there are a ton out there and alot of people like cura, which Im almost positive is free. I use KISSlicer, the free version will do everything you could ever want to do, there is a paid version but I dont know if anyone is even behind the desk anymore for that, and the only difference is being able to print more than one file at a time, but just getting into the printing stuff, it works great and gives superior print results imo. There are other versions like Slic3r, and a few others, and they are all free that I know of.

    The printers usually run just off of a usb cable, like you use on your cell phone, power cords and such usually comes with the printers, and the type of computer you have, you can use really anything you want. Ive used various slicers on mac, really any windows version past windows 95 and linux, Ive even run it on a raspberry pi before and it ran fine.

    If you are first getting into 3d printing, I would highly advise looking into software like repetier host, it is kinda an all in one software that all you do is just input the settings from the directions from the 3d printer site, open the stl file, and click slice. A few seconds later, the printer will spring to life and start making the part/parts that you opened on the software. Its the one I used when I first got started and I believe that it was a good starting point really, I think it runs on windows xp and newer.

    There are a bunch of 3d printer sites like thingiverse, youmagine, cubehero, etc out there and you can find almost anything you could want on those, all in stl format ready to download and print.

    I think the biggest cost with a 3d printer isnt really the printer, it's in the amount of filament that you'll start using once you get hooked on making stuff on the 3d printer, lol. There are various suppliers online that sell 1Kg spools for around 18-20 dollars, and each color has it's own magic setting that takes a small amount of time to dial in, but once you do get it, you'll get really nice looking and reliable prints from then on. What I mean by the magic setting, each color likes to have a certain temperature of the nozzle and heated bed so it extrudes easily, and sticks together without looking really dry looking, and sticks to the bed well without warping, but usually for PLA, which is what most people use when starting out, it's around a 5-10 degree range, around 190-200C depending on the printer and filament. Darker colors tend to like higher heat while lighter colors seem to like lower heat to bind them together.

  7. #17
    There are several free opensource slicing softwares out there Cura, Kiss, Repetier, matter control (I have been using Matter control lately). Many of the printers now take SD cards so you can slice the file on some other PC save it to an SD card plug the card into the printer and hit "Print". (The FT-5 has the SD card slot on the controller).The control files are all Gcode so if you know how you could code it by hand (I would never want too but hey). I was just looking at the FT-5 today, as I'm thinking about "upgrading" to a new 3d Printer and that one looks pretty solid and is priced right.

    CBB

  8. #18
    Moderator DavidF's Avatar
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    no worries Jammer. The software is free, you can down load it here https://www.repetier.com/ and then look on thingiverse.com for files you can print. You can play with the slicer before you buy a printer.
    Lots of fun stuff to print. I just printed 2 sling shots out and have been practicing my aim. Those guys on youtube make it look easy.
    The thing with 3d printing is that its mostly open source "free"
    A calm sea does not make a skilled sailor....

  9. #19
    Moderator DavidF's Avatar
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    A calm sea does not make a skilled sailor....

  10. #20
    Senior Member Jammer's Avatar
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    Which machine is that. Looks huge but nothing really there for scale.

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