Without Winsfords Rock salt the whole of the UK would grind to a Halt every year when the Snow and Ice arrives... So as a designer and manufacture of flat pack 3D printer Kits it is only fitting that we have a 3D printer using the local resource as the print medium.. yes a Salt printer..
Here is a taster of the Wych 3D Salt printer for anyone wonders why Winsford has not got the designation as a Wych town (meaning 'Brine Town') is the mere fact the Mr Wins had a Ford across the river weaver long before that naming scheme for Salt towns was thought of..
rints using the completely bio degradable Local resource of Salt.. the printer is based on the open source 3D powder printer called "Plan B" designed by Yvo de Haas.all of the Wych salt printer details drawings will be available as open source downloads..if you like this take a look here and like my page please.. https://www.facebook.com/Takeaway3DTech/
rain from the east took its time today so I was able to pop up 7 Solar
panels on to the Home Office roof. Lesson learnt today allowing only a
+/- 1mm tolerance on a roof is far too tight a tolerance even when using
laser cut templates instead of a ruler it was very tight but they are
nice and tight on the roof. Just have to wait for another rain free day
to add the rest.
Sorry for the long delay in post but I have been very busy.. By April I will be fully off grid solar powered for Electricity and Today I will start to integrate the good bits of my my 20 year old Fridge Freezer into my 1 year old Laser cutter ready for full scale Production in April if all goes well fingers crossed.. .. Reason the laser cutter needs to have its coolant kept below 20C Currently even with a CW3000 Industrial Laser chiller Im limited to 2-3 hours of Laser cutting this is ok for R&D work depending on my coolant start temperature which is about 8-10C. As I discovered last year Ambient temperate soon creeps up and reduces my lasering time considerably. It took me 2-3 hours of careful destructive disassembly to recover the whole freezer refrigerant system in tact still full of its refrigerant gas.
You ask why dose a 60W laser need so much cooling!! Well the laser tube is only 15% efficient so there is about 300W of waste heat to get rid of. The American RF Lasers are built into a huge lump of Aluminium the 50W one I had on loan was set in 25+ kilos of Aluminium this is then cooled by a stack of cooling fans take a look at the FabLab 30W laser it has a full row of fans on the top and bottom and back of the machine. Pictures of my Laser cutter the mods to follow...
After unloading the Big box from China unpacking disassembling using video sent from China then after removing the front door and door frame then lifting part by part into the house re-fitting door frame and front door then resembling the machine here is the resulting photos!!
Extra insulation stage 1 and solar power system re-mounting.
Same space just a little bigger machine in the space!
or from the the angle :-
So here is the cutting bed its three times bigger than the original machine!
its had to get good pictures in such close proximity installed and working with 11lts of cooling fluid imagine my supprise at seeing where the water goes in the tube you can see from the picture below.. why I was so supprised.
Yes it is not in the outside of the laser tube but in the inside of the tube its green as it has 25% antifreeze to stop algae growth and improve cooling the laze passes thru the coolant!! it has a 6" extractor tube compared to the 4" of the previous laser cutter all of the works are contained within the case I have added my own extra control circuity for the extractor fan and air compressor as in the original configuration these were on all the time they are now switched on by the controller as and when they are needed thus making this much more energy efficient my next task is to implement another idea buy removing the cooling system and changing it for a ground source cooling eg ground source heating is created from the 8C temperature of the earth 1m down now that could be used equally as well for cooling the tube instead of its radiator cooling system that will only regulate to ambient temperature. I read some place 8C was the optimum temperature to get 50% better cutting efficiency from the tube.
Sorry not much time to type we are at Fablabs 2nd birthday event this weekend. Comments at the preview last night said I wasn't blogging enough any more..
Oh its quite cool that the first build of the PCB worked !!!
Its running using a slightly changed version of Marlin firmware @ 16mhz need to find a 20Mhz boot ROM for Sanguino or figure out what's wrong with my environment settings as Make file wont make! my altered boot ROM code.
Side View of the test Jig
Showing 50V 500W PSU to drive the 4.2A Stepper motor
ie 2 Phases at 4.2A = 8.4A hence a 9.9A PSU at 50V
A quick set of random-ish pictures of various stages of development of bits and bobs.
Huxley Seedling is still in progress there are over 100 pictures of Huxley Seedling yet to be moved to my PC from Midges camera.
Part of the full build instruction set for the final version.
There have been many many re-designs and improvements made over the last year.
Here is a quick over view of some of the other projects:-
http://reprap.org/wiki/BIQ_SanguinoCNC PCBs arrived on Thursday first pictures.
BIQ_SanguinoCNC /Laser is a new project for controlling CNC machines or Laser cutters with a a 3D printing ability.
In fact the first two CNC machines it is going to control here are Big Bertha the 1200mm x 620mm CNC and a new Project the CNC lathe very basic design Idea is to take 500mm of stock material to drill and cut parts to length in an automated fashion.. (not holding my breath on this idea yet but looks promising)
The Huxley seedling A frames are becoming a universal building block for all sorts of new Ideas projects
60 BIQ opto end-stops made - only enough end-stops for 20 Huxley Seeding Kits
Pictorial guide on making leads for the BIQ opto end-stops.
Click a picture to enlarge
If only the RepRap WIKI was as easy as blogger to upload and edit you posts and pictures It would make life soo much easier!!
After a successful Top Gear challenge result yesterday morning with Midge Ace doing her wanna be the first female Stig impression, driving a typical "James May" type car against the clock we got to the Bang goes the theory live venue within our allotted time slot.. Phew..
Note to Midge when Jem announces fire in the hole or something like that and your at Bang Goes The Theory LIVE setting up day you shouldn't jump out of your skin as Midge did.. LOL.. Bang!!!!
Anyway I'm up early collecting the bits and bobs to build one or more of the Huxley seedlings at the show We will aim to build 2 Huxley Seedling 3D printers & demonstrate at least one of them them working....
Will post Pics if any come out its an even Darker Hall than Maker Fair was in March this year.
We are not far from releaseing Beta versions of Huxley Seedling to testers then it will not be too much longer before we release a take away 3D printer that will be avalible in Pocket money staged sections.or in full kit We will be offering fully built machines as well depending on demand.
Sunday morning 5am update
Trying to build two 3D printer when you are surounded by visitors to the show is almost imposible.. I will post pictures tomorow / tonight of how far I got with building two printers.. the basic frames were finished yesterday thats 4 A frames with fronts and back frame seperators on each printer finished.