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A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer


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Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

One difficulty I see is keeping all the filament tubes from getting tangled.

 

 

Keeping the bowdens untangled is a matter of arranging the feeders and hot ends in the proper order, but as I keep thinking about it, I see that just getting the heads into the dock would require a lot of extra motion, including raising and lowering the revolver. I sort of jumped the gun after thinking that a revolver would have restored print area to this guy's delta solution:

 

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    Ok so I've tried printing what I've designed, works well. So if anyone else want to try this with E3d V6, see here:

    https://www.youmagine.com/designs/e3d-v6-modular-print-carriage-system#!design-documents

     

    Designed for 6x12x3mm magnets

    Still designing the tool change part. Also had a great idea for a fan duct, which will fit on the the gripper module (part that stays on printer head). Will set about designing that too.

    Version 2 now up. This includes 4 additional 6x6x3mm magnets as I am concerned about the forces of the bowden tube. They can be left empty, and simply slot in from the sides so easy to add/remove. The version also has a fan duct built in for 40x40mm fan. For the E3D V6 with the E3D hot heater block. V3 will be for setups using the ultimaker heater block when I get time (as this is probably the way I will go for simplicity).

     

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    Guys,

    Real intereting stuff in this thread. Im around but just incredibly snowed under so trying to clear backlog. Sorr i havent added much here...yet!

    @Macua85 can probably work something out :)

    Ive got a couple interesting titbits on the way too :) will update as son as i can

     

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    I think I've got all the parts needed for dual extrusion now.

    The only thing missing is time ...

    I'll start with two mirrored NEMA8 direct extruder cartridges.

    Two steppers for a possible FlexDrive are lying around here as well.

     

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    I've been away for a week, but will continue to develop this this week. Regrettably I forgot to order the thermistors from e3d so that will slow progress a bit...I've decided to use UMO heaters with the e3d thermistor set up and a firmware alteration.

    Mutely I'll be in touch once this phase of testing is done. Interested about these titbits!

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    I have been wondering what the shortest time to change print heads might be.

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    With the heads parked in adjacent corners I would say 2 to 3 sec.

     

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    Crazy idea: What if instead of switching print heads, several machines were mounted upside down in a circle and connected to a rotating axis. They would at the same time print their material for that layer on separate print beds and then rotate to print their material on the next bed.

    It just seems so obvious and insanely great. :D

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    Umm, wouldn't it be multiple nozzles that you need, and 1 bed?!

     

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    Umm, wouldn't it be multiple nozzles that you need, and 1 bed?!

     

    But then each nozel is only being used during its turn. If you had several machine with several beds on a rotating platform, all the heads could be used at the same time. It would be like having a production line where each machine does its own part of the process, accept each bed could work on entirely different parts. I can think of a few reasons why it isn't a superb idea, but for the right application, it would be awesome.

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    The entire setup is working as it's supposed to :smile:

    But the second, refurbished Merlin hotend shows heavy underextrusion :sad:

    Had to order a new one ...

    BTW: There was a sudden power shutdown one time. I thought the UMO (19V, 6.32A) power supply should be able to handle dual extrusion.

    (Merlin heater cartridge is 30W, heated bed with separate power supply)

    Any ideas?

     

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    Do you still use the crossflow fan? How much power does that one draw?

     

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    Yes but it's connected to the heated bed power supply (I forgot to mention).

     

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    Hi Foehnsturm,

    Any videos of the latest? May I ask, how are you compiling the gcode for this modification. How did you figure the coordinates and commands for the tool change? Is there a program which displays the heads coordinates in real time?

    Thanks,

     

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    Videos: by the end of the week (at least hoping that).

    I just used the move axis command on the Ulticontroller.

    It's a very simple movement pattern, changing from first to second extruder:

    X102 Y172 ; move to back right cartridge holder

    X143 Y172 ; slide the cartridge in

    X143 Y7 ; perpendicular move away, to the front right holder

    X102 Y7 ; slide out (grab) the cartridge

    Then I used a simple text editor to replace the dual extrusion gcode generated by Cura:

    Search for: T1

    Replace with: G0 F15000 X102 Y172

    G0 F7000 X143 Y172

    G0 F15000 X143 Y7

    G0 F7000 X102 Y7

    T1

    The same, with a varied movement pattern, for T0

    I didn't replace the T0, T1 commands at the beginning (extruder priming).

     

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    Ok thanks, I think I understand. But would you mind sending me a sample gcode so I can have a looksee?

    Im just printing hopefully the final iteration of my tool carriage. But I can do too much more until the parts fun up from e3d (I forgot to order the k type thermocouples). I hope to show some proper progress soon. It will be interesting to compare the bowden vs direct extruder setup. Ultimate goal definitely mutley3d flex for me though, but the bodwen will be a good acid test to see if the added rigidity affect the magnetic holding while printing and moving.

     

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    Tool changer and cartridges are working reliably and precisely. But since yesterday I encountered:

    A ) Sudden power shutdowns.

    Looks like it happened when both heaters left the PID_FUNCTIONAL_RANGE at the same time and entered max current mode. I compiled a new Marlin with reduced BANG_MAX and increased PID_FUNCTIONAL_RANGE.

    B ) Extrusion problems -> slightly displaced stepper -> worm gear was loose.

    Fixed it.

    C ) Weird z calibration issue -> a nozzle becoming loose.

    Fixed it.

    D ) X offset between two nozzles where there shouldn't be one -> Hotend PEEK slightly off center.

    Adjusted Cura settings.

    E ) Spare weird x displacements during printing.

    I've seen that before. Looks like a wire crosstalking issue. No real solution yet.

    F ) Bad temperature control on one hotend.

    Discovered that the older one had a longer and stronger heater cartridge.

    Autotuned both hotends.

    G ) Numerous Z re-calibrations

    ...

    I already knew, double extrusion means double trouble ...

     

     

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    It's amazing. Bravo!

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    Maybe double trouble... but super cool!

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    It's a great project. Congrats on that new milestone. :D

    But: It somehow reminds me of the story of the Hubble space telescope. It was built because astronomers were convinced at that time that earthbound astronomy has come to its limits due to the atmosphere and only space telescope would be built from that time on.

    As history shows they were wrong. Today we have better earthbound telescopes than the HST.

    To come back to this wonderful project (please don't get me wrong, I really like it): Having two independent extruder is certainly a very clever solution for various collison and oozing issues. However, as soon as someone manages to build a hotend without oozing while being idle, the whole exchanging mechanism becomes obsolete.

    To go one step further: FFF/FDM itself might become obsolete. Just think about recent developments as the CLIP technology and new multijet 3D printers.

    But let's enjoy the toolchanging dual extrusion for the time being. And hopefully the UM R&D people will finally get a proper dual extrusion print into their hands (as they still claim not having seen a really proper one so far... ;) )

     

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    Having a hotend with no oozing is easy. Just put a suck pump on the hotend. Cheap and hassle free. This kind of suck pump is used all the time for printing machines.

    CLIP is not a replacement for FDM printers. Resin printers will never be printers for home use. If you have used one for one week you will understand why. It remembers me those photo labs we used many years ago to develop photo prints.

    The technology i see as more likely to be the one we will have in our desktops in the future is HP fusion technolgy.

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    One of the first posts I ever made here talked about FDM as a possible evolutionary side branch. There are already or at least will be methods which are more precise or faster. However, I'd call them all single material processes. I don't talk about color here but about materials with really different properties.

    As competition for FDM will rise its unique features will be of more and more importance. And combining the wide and steadily growing range of applicable materials is a key feature.

    This is what led me to the tool change idea:

    Combining most different materials with most different properties in one piece will require most different tool heads. (filament extruders, paste extruders, lasers ...)

    However, I know printers of this type almost certainly won't be the entry level mass market machines. But why not use a detachable cartridge system even for single extruder setups?

     

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    I'll stop here. Everything works neatly - until the power supply shuts down ...

    That's aiming at a moving target. I'll have to get a stronger one.

    gallery_5589_458_415936.jpg

     

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    It looks like 19V supplies with more power are hard to find. Any recommendations?

    Should I replace the on board 12V regulator by a step down type to run off a 24V supply?

    EDIT: I'll proceed as described here http://umforum.ultimaker.com/index.php?/topic/7462-power-supply-for-ultimaker-1/?p=70903

     

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    Posted · A different multi-extrusion approach - UM tool / printhead changer

    I am super impressed.

    I'd love you to stick at it as FDM, though much derided has shown some real leaps - mainly driven by filament types.

    The chance to combine them is one of the holy grails that has eluded all but few manufacturers (lulzbot seem too have a good working model for ninjaflex and abs.)

    But your approach is a step change. - imagine different nozzle sizes - oooooooh!

     

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