Here’s a quick update on some of the projects we’ve been working on this year:
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We went to the 2014 USA Science and Engineering Festival up in Washington, DC, and we wanted to share it with our fellow school Maker Team members. Here’s the video we produced to do that.
USA Science & Engineering Festival
April 24-27, 2014
SPECIAL THANKS to: Lockheed Martin, Snap-On, K’Nex, Lulzbot, U.S. Naval Academy, Natasha, NASA, and Printrbot.
MUSIC: “Saturdays Basement” by cdk, 2014 – Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) http://ccmixter.org/files/cdk/45072
There are live links on the youtube page for the video for each of these segments:
0:33 Scenes from the Festival
0:53 Lots of 3D Printers!
1:05 Lockheed Martin Large Robot Arm 3D Printer
1:52 Lockheed Martin F35 Lightening II Cockpit Simulator
2:23 Snap-on Racecar
2:33 Huge K’Nex Ferris Wheel
3:14 Lulzbot 3D Printing
3:50 U.S. Naval Academy Robotic Arm
4:52 Natasha the Maker
5:23 NASA Astronaut Alvin Drew
5:57 Brook at Printrbot
6:43 Summary with More Scenes from Exhibits
We got a Mazda CX-5 and so far we’re pretty happy with it. We wanted an organizer in the back, though, to help prevent things from falling over and rolling around, and we wanted it to be easy to collapse if necessary. Here’s how we made one for less than $15. Add a few extra dollars for bungee cords to hold the organizer in place if you want. (Mazda recommends that you secure the stuff you put in the back.)
The bins were designed to accommodate our reusable grocery bags, with some tight nooks in the back for things like baseballs, pencil kits, and books. (The kids can open up the middle section and reach back.) Placed close to the back seats, this design still allows access to things stored with the spare tire. It can be disassembled pretty quickly if necessary.
- 1 piece of 1x6x10′ pine (whiteboard) lumber, and be sure it’s not splitting at the ends. This should cost about $10 at the home center — ask them to cut it in half for you and you’ll be able to fit it into the CX-5.
- 1 can of flat black spray paint. I got Painter’s Touch, which was labeled “primer + paint” for less than $4.
- 2 bungee cords, approximately 18″ long unstretched. We had these laying around from a Harbor Freight assortment kit we got a while back. They’re probably about $1 each, and are use to secure both the organizer to the floor, and secure bags in the two outer bins.
- 4 3/4″ felt pads. These are really optional, but might help prevent damage to the interior of the car. We had them on had, but you can also pick them up at the home center for a couple dollars.
- From each 5-foot length, cut one 41″ board, and one 17″ board.
- On both 17″ boards, measure in 1 3/4″ from each end and cut a 3/4″ slot across half the width of the board. Cut both boards together.
- On both 41″ boards, measure 13″ from each end and cut a 3/4″ slot across half the width of the board. Cut both boards together.
- Also on both 41″ boards, measure about 2 1/2″ from each end and drill a 1/2″ hole so it overlaps the edge of the board enough to fit a bungee cord. Do this on the opposite side from the slots if you want the 41″ boards to hold down the 17″ boards, or on the same side to make the weak ends of the 17″ boards a little more protected from accidental breaks.
- Sand, assemble, and paint.
- Attach a felt pad to the middle of the end of each 41″ board, and install into car. Run the bungee from the back hook, through the drill holes, and up to the front hook. You can tie a knot in the bungee where it passes through the board to help keep it in place if it slides.
It’s important to note that the small sections of 17″ board on the outside of the 41″ boards will be weak because there’s only 2.5″ against the grain holding them in place. If you’re going to be disassembling/reassembling this a lot, you might want to glue some blocks to those weak areas to strengthen them.
Here’s the complete Bill of Materials (BOM) for the club’s Prusa i2 build. It’s sorted first by type of material, then by assembly. The number at the left is the part number in the order it was recorded from a reference machine.
Direct link here.
Here’s a certificate of achievement that you can use for the kids who complete the project at your school. We had two titles: The kids who were in the club were awarded “3D Printer Maker” certificates, and those that helped out a lot (usually younger siblings) were awarded “”3D Printer Apprentice” certificates. The text of the certificate is shown below the image.
Download the SVG file here: 3D Printer Club: Lesson Plans and Other Documents
The border features the typical honeycomb-style infill pattern that 3D prints often use.
Here’s the text of the certificate:
Let it be known that on this twenty-fourth day of May, two thousand and thirteen,
is hereby honored and recognized for outstanding achievement as part of an awesome team of awesome kids who built a fully functional 3D printer—from scratch, having learned tons and tons of cool stuff along the way, including blogging, accounting, sourcing, assembly, robotics, electronics, management, teamwork, and a bunch of other awesome things too numerous to list. This exceedingly rare and highly coveted document therefore confers upon the aforementioned Maker, the esteemed, hard-earned, and frankly just awesome title of
3D Printer Maker
with all the rights, privileges, and honors appertaining thereunto.
In this video, Jacob shows an easy way to set up a PCB heatbed for your 3D printer — a method that allows the entire surface of the heatbed to be used for printing. He also shows how to cut inexpensive certificate frame glass to size with some simple tools. We’ve had printers with a heatbed setup just like this running without incident for over a year.
Supplies used: PCB Heatbed (with high-temperature wire attached), glass (same size as heatbed), scissors, kapton tape, four M3 nuts and screws (12-16mm), screwdriver & pliers, thermistor, thermistor lead insulation (kapton tape works, too), and pipe insulation tape. See below for glass cutting tools.
Glass Cutting Tools & Materials: Safety glasses, sheet glass (certificate frame glass works well), glass cleaner, paper towels, permanent marker, ruler, cutting oil, straight edge, glass cutting tool, breaking edge, leather gloves, and sandpaper.
A project-based RepRap build is the perfect way to bring STEM and many other disciplines to your school. To learn more about starting a 3D printer build at your school, visit http://www.thefrankes.com/wp/?page_id=2766.
- “Pulse (George Ellinas remix)” by George_Ellinas. 2008 – Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution (3.0). http://ccmixter.org/files/George_Ellinas/14073
- “Drops of H2O ( The Filtered Water Treatment )” by J.Lang. 2012 – Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution (3.0). http://ccmixter.org/files/djlang59/37792
Here’s a video to the team from software developer and RepRap expert Alessandro Ranellucci, the creator of the extremely popular Slic3r software.
We made a video to show the difference in noise between the Pololu A4988 Stepper Motor Driver Carrier, which has 1/16 steps, and the DRV8825 Stepper Motor Driver Carrier which has 1/32 steps. These drivers are common in RepRap 3D printers. The resistor soldered onto the DRV8825 is not required on their latest versions of the board.
The goal for this video was originally to capture the difference in sound that I noticed when I switched from one driver to the other, and this test seemed to do that. I updated it to be a bit more scientific than it was originally by carefully setting the current limit, adjusting the steps per unit, and including details about the setup.
For this test:
- 12.17V DC
- Kysan 1124090 (1.8°, 1.5A/phase) stepper motor
- 18T Aluminum GT2 2mm Belt/Pulley
- PLA bushings on W1 tool steel smooth rod with white lithium grease
- 1.3A current limit using VREF method