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  • Thanks for the information. I agree about PLA. Before switching to ABS, I made quite a few parts for my flight simulator throttle assembly (gears, mounting hardware, etc) and they are fine for now. But they aren't under any stress or pressure. If I'm hearing that PETG is going to result in a lot more strength than ABS, I might consider switching. But I don't know if I'm hearing that at this point. It does stand to reason that higher temperatures could reduce printer longevity. But I guess the points of failure would be the nozzle and possibly the heat bed. Other than that, I'm thinking all other components should be ok. So I guess replacing the nozzle or bed at some point wouldn't be too bad. I agree about staying with things that work, filament brand, etc.

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    • There are a number of things that contribute to the strength of various types of filament. I have a few friends that have actually made some unbelievably strong things out of PLA alone. It mainly depends on print settings (infill types, perimeters, top/bottom layers, etc.) as well as how the piece(s) are designed. Along with that, the filament itself is incredibly important. A lot of "you get what you pay for" but I stick with filaments with available measurements for impurities as well as manufacturing precision. Prusament filament gives you details on each spool that you can check to ensure you're getting the best string diameter consistency and qualities. I use their filament a lot.

      That being said, PETG is by far the most superior type of filament in terms of heat resistance as well as strength. PLA tends to be more brittle and horrible with heat. ABS is strong but requires an enclosure and his harder to keep sticking to the bed. PETG (most of the time) sticks a little too well but is strong and incredibly heat resistant. The Prusa i3 is actually made using a lot of 3D printed PETG pieces (which makes it nice if a piece ever does break or need replacing as they provide the models online which you can print at any time).

      In terms of my previous post regarding machining, one of my companies clients has a machine shop and has offered to make specialized CNC parts for me as long as I provide the designs. Not super cheap to do, but cool to have a resource for one-off designs if I need any. Also debating on making my own at-home CNC using plans from Ivan Miranda, who makes some awesome stuff and a lot of cool at DIY machines including a massive 3D printer that is utterly ridiculous but amazing: https://www.youtube.com/c/IvanMirandaCom/videos

      Not sure yet what I am going to do for my return. I am debating between a ball accelerator or gravity return. Both have pros and cons but we'll see how everything works out with the rest of it.
      - Shaun R.
      - Web Developer / Programmer

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      • Started finally putting some things together now that I have a large amount of parts printed and assembled. I have my test pin deck together and rough mounted my sweep to make sure my dimensions are correct at least up until this point.

        The sweep (to me) was the most critical piece in terms of testing as the linkage has many moving parts that are easy to see in practical assembly rather than digital testing. It has a nice fluid AMF movement, despite shoddy scrap lumber framing to test. Now I am starting to fine tune exactly what my frame will look like extrusion wise to begin assembling that this week.

        I am trying to shift to mostly aluminum extrusion for every part of the backend for both rigidity and to make sure everything is as square as can be with quick mounting and changes.

        Not much, but a little progress.
        Attached Files
        - Shaun R.
        - Web Developer / Programmer

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        • That's looking really nice. Looking forward to seeing the frame and seeing it in action.
          If it can't be fixed with a hammer, try a bowling pin! They're heavier and more surface area for whacking!

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          • Making some decent progress and have most of the main framing complete. I'm attempting to use the aluminum extrusion for both the table and sweep rockers using 3D printed round adapters and mounting bracket to be able to make things as square and symmetrical as I can (since my welding skills are questionable at best).

            Next up is getting both rockers fully assembled and mounted up and start measuring for how I want the drive articulation to go. Have everything I need, just need to get the correct measurements and get everything designed out. Hoping to have some true motor and drive mounting down this week and see where that takes me.
            Attached Files
            - Shaun R.
            - Web Developer / Programmer

            Comment


            • Looking really good. The T-slot tubing will make things much easier for you. I found it VERY useful during development of my machine. So nice to to just be able to loosen something and move it where you need to when the situation arises. Really enjoying watching this come together.

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              • I absolutely love aluminum extrusion. Very easy to cut and work with and very easy to keep square. Have already experienced two or three moments of "whoops, my measurements were off" that I had to make slight adjustments to distances and clearances and was able to change things on the fly to get things to line up and work without having to cut and grind off welds and do it again.

                So far my biggest pain point has been my M5 screws. Not sure if one of the batches was a bad quality or what but had a number of them in one of the sets strip out with very little torque which set me back a little at times but otherwise been pretty flawless.

                Another advantage of the aluminum extrusion is (at least so far) my distributor design. While it will be similar to the 82-70+, using the aluminum extrusion, I am able to get the extension of the arm working pretty nicely using a simple roller gantry which should help keep the distributor arm light but rigid.

                Actually got the sweep rocker mounted up late last night and everything seems to be working well there. Just waiting on some more bearings and two more gears to come to finalize the drives a little bit more before I really start playing around with it.

                For some reason I had a very hard time finding 3/8" bore #35 roller gears that were reliably made (both of my maker motors are 3/8" D-shaft). After a while I kind of gave up and figured I was going to have to couple them up to 5/8" in order to get the gear ratio I was hoping for but as soon as I started mocking up how I could get that to work nicely I found some 3/8" so I might be able to keep my initial design. We'll see.

                - Shaun R.
                - Web Developer / Programmer

                Comment


                • Just a quick update. Sweep is now working (in manual mode) and clearance tested with the table rocker in place. Here is a quick video of the sweep operating by hand just to make sure everything works:



                  Once a few more parts come in and I get the drive systems pretty much assembled I am going to be moving this from my garage to my office to continue working on it once it's too the point of no more physical "construction." When it comes to 3D printing parts, both of my printers are at my office so it'll make it easier to test print pieces and try them out immediately instead of waiting until later in the night to play around with everything.

                  Also, decided to play around a little bit with some prints and got some pretty decently working rod ends printed. These are currently being used on the top table stabilizers and seem to hold up pretty well. Not my end goal to use them in actuality. The current rod ends I have are 28 TPI, while I only had 20 TPI all-thread to work with at the moment so I decided to take it into my own hands to speed up the process for the moment haha
                  Attached Files
                  - Shaun R.
                  - Web Developer / Programmer

                  Comment


                  • Sweep runs nice and smooth. I did notice that it rises slightly at the rear though. Is that do to weight of pins being pushed or something else? On a side note, I was wondering how you printed the whole sweep bar. Now I see it's multiple pieces. Looks good. What CAD are you using? I need to find s simple one and have been looking at a couple.

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                    • The sweep bar raising was something I noticed while initially testing all of the movement, but it's actually more of an illusion than it is actually lifting. Since the bar tilts forward on the backend of the movement, it allows light leak under the bar itself which makes it look like it lifts. Also I did notice in my video that I overran the sweep past the end of the pin deck which doesn't help. There is no rotational linkage hooked up to that at the moment, I just simply added a handle to the rocker arm to allow me to move it in sync until I can get some of the drives in place and start working on control arms.

                      As for CAD, I've been using both SketchUp Pro 2022 and Fusion 360. SketchUp Pro is great for simple items as it has a pretty low learning curve, but with extensions, can definitely do a lot of robust things. Unfortunately after 2017 they got rid of their standalone / installable "free" version (SketchUp Make 2017), but they do still offer it for download which has full extension support: https://help.sketchup.com/en/downloading-older-versions

                      Fusion 360 is definitely more robust (as expected from an AutoDesk program) but has a little bit longer of a learning curve. I do like a lot of it's native features such as parameterization, which is great for prototyping designs. If a piece or object is built off of parameters to begin with and you realize a dimension is off, you can change the parameters and the object is updated for you without having to rebuild or mess with the actual object itself. A lot of timesaving there especially when working in the unknown with prototypes.
                      Attached Files
                      - Shaun R.
                      - Web Developer / Programmer

                      Comment

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