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List of ideas I'm going to work on: Dual OX with 3D Printing, Cohesive Printing Circuits, and more.

Discussion in 'Concepts and Ideas' started by raykholo, Jul 9, 2014.

  1. raykholo

    raykholo Journeyman
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    Some things that I'm [hopefully] about to work on and would love to get as many people in the community here involved in from the beginning.

    My goal right now is to be able to print circuits inside of 3D models. I've been having humidity related issues with PLA for the past 2 months (and other issues before that) so I want to make this a UV-cured resin printer (like SLA) but, right side up and building up, like the conventional FDM filament printers. This provides several advantages: No filament means no jams, while right side up means no vat which allows multiple material printing with 'relative' ease. For the sake of abstraction, let's say it's a multiple extruder paste printer, with UV curable plastic resin, support material, and conductive ink.

    Notice that the circuit is printed but no mention is given to the components. Until I merge this with a pick and place (and UV solder paste), it'll still require the user to place and solder the components in. This led to one very important design consideration: the bed should not move at all. So I'm designing a V-Slot printer where the bed is stationary and attached to the base frame, and the carriage moves in all 3 axes.

    This is why I like the OX so much. Am I the only one that thinks that the OX concept would make a great printer, especially for mass production of printed components? It's got a solid frame, the bed doesn't move so one can make it as large as possible, and with some minor changes (adding threaded rods, motors, and vertical beams to both side plates) it would be possible to make it into a printer. I currently have a gMax Printer: in my version the X-Carriage uses 8mm chromed rod, but in a new upgrade it runs on 20mm V-Slot, which is perfect. Image.
    The OX uses a fixed belt for the Y-axis and this actually opens the door to 2 separate carriages: one for printing and the other as it was designed for milling/ routing. They would park on opposite ends of the machine. For a prototype future version of the electronics printer, I hope to make 1 carriage the print heads and the other carriage the pick and place.
    --
    With conductive ink, it may be possible to apply a circuit pattern directly onto glass, effectively making a glass bed itself into a heater circuit board.
    --
    I'm going to be cutting a lot of V-Slot in order to make all these things, and I want to take Mark's saw stop a step farther, turning it into something like SawGear. My version will use a 1000mm 20x60 like his, which pairs nicely with a 3ft 5/16"-18 threaded rod (not even going to bother with ACME rod for this), 2 nuts with a compression spring between them, and an 8mm to 5mm coupler for the Nema17 stepper. (5/16" is almost 8mm). For control, I'm just going to flash the Marlin Firmware onto my first Arduino (Diecimila), borrow a stepper driver from my gMax, I have an extra endstop, and I can pair an old laptop running Repetier and use the Y axis manual control to adjust the stop length. Until, of course, a keypad and display is integrated with a custom arduino sketch or a dedicated PC program comes along.
     
  2. andrew

    andrew Journeyman
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    "My goal right now is to be able to print circuits inside of 3D models." <- Holy Grail of 3D Printing right there
    I can't wait till we get there. I've seen some promising efforts with low melt alloys or solder for conductors. Properties of these materials are not ideal though.

    "UV solder paste"
    Does this exist? Perhaps a conductive epoxy would work. Please share any specifics you have found.

    "I want to make this a UV-cured resin printer (like SLA) but, right side up and building up"
    "multiple extruder paste printer, with UV curable plastic resin, support material"
    This sounds like Stratasys Polyjet technology. You might want to research those printers if you are not familiar.

    Good Luck!!
     
  3. raykholo

    raykholo Journeyman
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    It's exactly polyjet! Glad you caught on! Except until I develop some custom printheads (which I plan to do by building a littleSLA derivative once that launches/ source files are released, and prototyping using that), I'm using bottle as reservoir --> tubing --> peristaltic pump using stepper motor --> fine blunt needle. (Purpose being a syringe that doesn't run out b/c you can refill the bottle any time, including mid print).

    The solder paste is secondary in my mind right now to the conductive ink. The way stratasys makes their 'inks' is actually quite straightforward: mix up whatever ink we want, add proprietary photopolymer (the component that cures under UV light). So I'm not completely discouraged from making something like what I've described. However, graphene ink that hardens under UV light is first.
     

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