Project Update #28: First Production Update!

Posted by Jean Le Bouthillier ♥ Like
Hello backers,
In this update I will share some details of our production process and how we are making sure that every BI V2.5 unit meets our exacting standards. I will shed some light on processes that go on during the manufacturing of a BI V2.5.
Perfect Geometry
Cartesian 3D printers generate XYZ motion with a dedicated axis for each direction. In delta robots XYZ motion is generated by combining the motion of 3 different axis. This means that having a perfect geometry is especially important to achieve high precision.
One of the first thing that happens if you don't have a perfect geometry is that the delta platform doesn't remain parallel to the build surface. This can happen, because of uneven delta arms or other errors in the system. To ensure perfect parallelism, we are currently running a very precise test across several machines.
Inertial measurement unit to verify parallelism
Another very important concept for positional accuracy is the repeatability of travels for each delta tower. To test this, we exercise each tower several times and record the displacements with a high precision industrial grade potentiometer.
Testing fixture to measure delta tower travels
François (BI V2.5 Mechanical Engineer) performing the tests
100% Testing
Another aspect of this project is to carefully calibrate our firmware to work seamlessly with your BI V2.5. As such, we test each individual components to insure that they perform as advertised.
One such testing is to test our hotend extruder cartridges to make sure that we generate temperature/resistance calibration curves that truly reflect the performance of these cartridges. We've seen others simply use existing open source calibration tables without considering that there are a lot of heater cartridges out there and that performances will vary. We don't cut corner at Boots Industries!
Industrial grade testing apparatus for temperature
Power systems
Although the BI V2.5 is sold as a 3D printer kit, we are making sure that the fundamental components such as power systems and wiring reflect the highest possible quality and craftsmanship. Below you can see some pictures of power system components.
Bottom platform underside with power supply
Wiring being tucked away inside 20/20 channels
Latest on the extruder
Here is the latest picture of the injection molded extruder. We are running test prints on several machines at the time of writing! Notice the longer and textured extruder gear for manual feed of the filament.
Latest extruder revision
Fabrication of custom components
Several components of the BI V2.5 are not commercially available and must be machined, laser cut, molded or otherwise fabricated. We've talked a lot about the molding process, but today I am sharing a picture of some laser cutting that is required for this project.
Our laser cutter in action!
As always your thoughts are welcome! I am writing this update a bit hastily and I plan to offer a more global view of the machine in the next one. I hope that our readers enjoy learning about the finer details and what goes on behind the curtains