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Thread: 12" I3V Build

  1. #1
    Technician
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    12" I3V Build

    Been mostly lurking for a couple weeks. Ordered a 12" I3V (1.75mm E3D V6, Greg's and Rumba with Graphical LCD) on the weekend and am starting this thread for two reasons. To get any feedback I can on what those before me would do differently on their initial build and as a place holder for anything I learn/need help with during the build. Been reading through the two sticky threads and a few others in the forum. So far there are a few things I know I'm going to be changing during the build.


    • I've ordered the SS Relay and heatsink already to convert the heat bed to PID (not sure what the implications are of the built in relay Colin now ships it with)
    • I'll be buying some extra baltic birch plywood and at a minimum beefing up the Y-axis ends
    • Ordered some 5mm-5mm Z couplers that I will also be drilling and tapping to add set screws to on top of the squeeze screws already on them
    • Thread locker will be used liberally during the build
    • Once up and running the first prints will be replacement end stop mounts and guides/protection brackets for the top of the threaded rods
    • Print one of the print cooling ducts and depending on how my steppers end up temp wise adding some heat sinks or active cooling
    • Pretty sure I'll add an out of filament detector relatively soon after completion
    • Either build a small torsion box or just a 3/4" sheet of mdf to mount it to (if I go to the trouble of a torsion box I'll make sure to do a little extra planning so that could be part of an enclosure for the printer)


    Not planning on ABL initially but may change my mind later. Bought this power supply to run my LIPO chargers but have since bought a different supply for that and will be using the linked one for the printer.

  2. #2
    Engineer-in-Training
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    I would also recommend you setup auto bed leveling as it makes life so much easier. You will need to print the servo mount parts and get yourself a servo.

  3. #3
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    ...and a high quality micro switch for the servo.

  4. #4
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    Two votes for ABL and only Colin and one other guy I've seen in my browsing on this forum against it. Might end up happening sooner than later then :P

    Any thoughts on passive heat sinks on the axis steppers? They are pretty cheap online so can't see how they'd hurt.

    Might start with that on the extruder too and go active if I notice them getting too hot.

  5. #5
    Engineer-in-Training
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    Are you talking about heat sinks for the motors or stepper drivers? My kit came with small heat sinks for the drivers, my motors have never gotten hot enough that I would consider cooling for them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dustin B View Post
    Two votes for ABL and only Colin and one other guy I've seen in my browsing on this forum against it. Might end up happening sooner than later then :P

    Any thoughts on passive heat sinks on the axis steppers? They are pretty cheap online so can't see how they'd hurt.

    Might start with that on the extruder too and go active if I notice them getting too hot.

  6. #6
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    I was talking about the motors. Just seen the mods for shrouds to do active cooling on the motors and the talk of adjusting the voltage to the stepper motors to the lowest point where they don't miss steps but run cool. Didn't realize the drivers on the Rumba board would be potentially more of an issue. But now that you mention it I've seen designs for shrouds and mounts for the electronics too just not any threads on here about it.

  7. #7
    Staff Engineer printbus's Avatar
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    Add printbus on Thingiverse
    Dustin - For a lot of 2014, MakerFarm shipped kits with a different motor that tended to run very hot, and some people were using heatsinks or fan shrouds to help cool them. For about the last year, kits have been shipped with motors that are better suited for the 3D printer application. The new motors don't run any where near as hot and shouldn't require anything as far as cooling.

  8. #8
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    Sounds good. One less thing to worry about tweaking is good.

    What slicer should I start with?

  9. #9
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    I found the I get better Z results by cranking up the voltage on the driver a bit. The downside is that it runs very hot. I added a fan to the control board to keep it cool. The only other time I worried about my stepper motors is with my modified extruder. I went with am Itty Bitty belted design and found the motor got quite hot. I ended up redesigning the gears to gain some mechanical advantage and not the motor hovers around 40 degrees. The fan shroud can be found here from thingiverse.

    As far as slicers, I started with slicer but could never get the results I was after. I love how many options you have control over however. The mid print performance seemed to be messy and not done well. The movements are very efficient. I just couldn't get the extrusion to look the way I want. I have found that I get very good top layer performance from it...but it took a lot of tweaking. I have to tweak a lot per roll to get it acceptable.

    I have been using Mattercontrol and I really like it. I get awesome prints time and time again vs. Slic3r. The top layer isn't as tweak able but it is acceptable. What I like is that I can just enter the specific diameter of the filament I am using and I get an awesome print. I highly recommend it.

    I want to try simplify3d but can't get myself to pay for it. I'd really like a demo but they do not offer one. I haven't found a direct comparison between Mattercontrol and simplify3d yet.

  10. #10
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    What do you mean by mid print and top layer and what controls do slicers give you that can affect them?

    So easy to get swept up into the hardware but I'm starting to realize more that the slicing software and it's configuration is going to be equally if not more important than the hardware.

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