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Filament Length Sensor Arduino Insights

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Posted · Filament Length Sensor Arduino Insights

Ok, i'm trying to build an Arduino monitor to give me some insights into my Ultimaker.

What i want to know:

temperature of my stepper motors (they are incredibly hot)

if the build platform is up or down (to signal end of print)

amount of filament used (measure length of filament passed through feeder)

while I know of easy ways to accomplish the first 2 things, I am breaking my head over how to resolve the measure of the wire length used by my printer. Maybe a sort of an optical sensor?

has anyone tried this?

 

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Posted · Filament Length Sensor Arduino Insights

Hi,

There are solutions documented for this, but as far as I remember not for UM.

The easiest way would be a optical sensor and a rotating indicator disk as e.g. used in printers. Put in onto the feeder axis and calc the length via the turns it makes...

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Posted · Filament Length Sensor Arduino Insights

You could also incorporate an error signal if there is no material entering the bowden tube/feeder. So print's won't print without filament.

 

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Posted · Filament Length Sensor Arduino Insights

It's not cheap but you could use an encoder such as the one below. You just need some friction drive and a pinch roller on the filament. It produces 1024 pulses per rotation. If you made a wheel with some friction material around it that in total was 20 mm in diameter, each pulse would represent about .06mm of material feed. Because it is quadrature, it will tell you what direction the material is moving. Probably a very good way of detecting out-of-filament or a jam.

https://www.sparkfun.com/products/11102

If you were really tricky, you could have a second arduino monitor the step and direction pins of the E driver and use the output from the encoder to detect when the material stops feeding for whatever reason....

 

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Posted · Filament Length Sensor Arduino Insights

I've been thinking of this too. Surely the best way would be to use an optical mouse - greater accuracy, no contact, very small sense area - could be used on print head.

trouble is you really need to know the filament pressure as well as if it is actually moving.

 

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Posted · Filament Length Sensor Arduino Insights

It would be interesting to see how accurate the sensor of an optical mouse could be. Here is a little tutorial I came across about interfacing such a sensor with arduino :http://www.martijnthe.nl/2009/07/interfacing-an-optical-mouse-sensor-to-your-arduino/

 

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