Category Archives: A Reprap Project

Stepper motors or a BLDC servo motors? Which is better and when to use them.

Which is better, a stepper motor or a brushless DC (BLDC) servo motor like these from Teknic (Clearpath)? The short answer: It depends on your application. If you only need open-loop position control (no shaft position feedback), are on a … Continue reading

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Modifying Marlin Firmware to work with a TandemB

In previous posts I built a prototype ‘TandemB’  which can be thought of as a 2D Delta printer in terms of its x and y-axis movement. This prototype could be moved about under its own power but that had no compatible firmware … Continue reading

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Construction of a TandemB Prototype

In a previous post I proposed the idea using an unconventional kinematic system to translation movements in the x and y axis. This idea, which was dubbed ‘Tandem’, is similar to that of a delta robot with the key difference being that rather … Continue reading

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Working in Tandem – Unconventional XY-axis layouts for 3D printing, laser cutting, CNC milling, engraving or pick and place.

Below I outline three separate concepts for moving in the X and Y plane with a specific emphasis on minimising the moving mass, maintaining high mechanical stiffness, reducing backlash and allowing two stepper motors to work in tandem. It is my hope that these concepts, … Continue reading

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Bootstrapping a pen plotter to make a 3d printer

Back in 2010 I developed an intense interested in understanding and eventually building a 3D printer. This interest took me down the path of reading all the material available at the time and purchasing a RAMPS (V1.2) which I used to control … Continue reading

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One step conversion of an image to gcode for Makerbot Unicorn and Reprap style 3D Printers

How to take an image like this: and in one step generate the gcodes required to do this: All credit for goes to the original creator Neil Gershenfeld of  MIT Center for Bits and Atoms and David Carr of Make Your Bot who optimised the … Continue reading

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DIY Dual H-Bridge to control a Pen Plotter

In my previous post I pulled apart an old pen plotter revealing it to be controlled by two brushed DC motors.  In order to power each DC motor a H-bridge was required but I had none on hand. However it turns out a H … Continue reading

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