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  1. #1
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    Printrbot Introduces the Printrbelt

    The conveyor belt 3D printer idea seems to be catching on lately. Printrbot and Polar3D have teamed up to develop a new 3D printer called the Printrbelt, and although it's compact, its build size is extensive.The Printrbelt features a conveyor belt as a build platform, enabling a build area of 6" x 6" by "Infinite Z," as Printrbot calls it. The 3D printer's dimensions are small, at 16" x 24" x 16" and only 19 lbs, but the conveyor belt allows for the printing of objects of any length - and any number. Once a part has finished printing, it simply drops off the end of the belt, making room for the next object, so that the user can print continuously. Learn more at 3DPrint.com: http://3dprint.com/179736/printrbot-polar3d-printrbelt/


  2. #2
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    I remember seeing Bill Steele's prototype of this at Rapid 2016. it really makes sense for him to team up with Printrbot to bring it to market, as the form factor doesn't really match with the rest of Polar3D's line, but fits right in with Printrbot's style.

  3. #3
    Super Moderator curious aardvark's Avatar
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    Neat bit of kit - but infinite x not z. Z is height.
    Still trying to figure out how that canted extruder can print 6 inches straight up.

    Cool idea.

  4. #4
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    With the tilted extruder, and the parts going away from it while being printed, the "infinite z" makes since.

  5. #5
    Super Moderator curious aardvark's Avatar
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    nah, still length not height.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by curious aardvark View Post
    Neat bit of kit - but infinite x not z. Z is height.
    Still trying to figure out how that canted extruder can print 6 inches straight up.
    Z-axis in relation to the direction of the layers. It has a limited envelope in which it can print any given layer, but an unlimited number of layers it can print.
    As for the overhang issue, overhangs on the leading edge of the print need supports going diagonally down to the plate. Supports in general would be going in the direction parallel to the nozzle, not perpendicular to the belt.
    The website for the Blackbelt gives a clear explanation for it here, and they show off some counter-intuitive overhang tricks it can do.

    Edit: added link
    Last edited by Feign; 07-06-2017 at 02:29 PM.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by curious aardvark View Post
    nah, still length not height.
    Only as a result of your perspective. Height isn't strictly in relation to the orientation of gravity, and if you are that upset about it, turn the printer 90 degrees

    Compared to the orientation of the layers, this is in fact the Z axis, and if the software refers to it as Z, it's hard to argue.

  8. #8
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    I think that the layers are printed at about 45 degrees from horizontal. If you're printing mechanical parts like gears, they may not be as strong as parts printed on regular 3D printers.

  9. #9
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    Jeff has a point, controlling the layer orientation of a part on this would probably require a raft tilted off the belt to be parallel to the gantry. That would end up being a very thick raft in most cases.
    If I remember correctly, Steele's prototype (and from the looks of it, the Printrbelt also) have the gantry at a fixed 30o angle from the belt.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Feign View Post
    Jeff has a point, controlling the layer orientation of a part on this would probably require a raft tilted off the belt to be parallel to the gantry. That would end up being a very thick raft in most cases.
    If I remember correctly, Steele's prototype (and from the looks of it, the Printrbelt also) have the gantry at a fixed 30o angle from the belt.
    Yes, but we already deal with that. If we want specific orientation we have to deal with a ton of supports in many cases.

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