Liberty, Equality, & Justice for ALL
Tux-Lab Manufacturing Project
- ORDER. Let all your Things have their Places. Let each part of your Business have its Time. -
Benjamin Franklin


RepRap, the open source 3d printer that rivals commercial units for a fraction of the cost.

[Back to Projects] <|> [Back to Categories]

- RepRap Task Summary -
Rep-Start Completed 1.0 hr $0.00
Extruder V2.0 Completed 4.0 hr $0.00
Taking the Plunge Completed 12.0 hr $0.00
RepRap Motherboard V1.2 Completed 4.0 hr $0.00
StepperMotorDriver V2.3 Completed 12.0 hr $0.00
Uploading Firmware Completed 4.0 hr $0.00
Testing Motherboard V1.2 Completed 4.0 hr $0.00
Imperial Stepper Completed 4.0 hr $0.00
Resuming Repstrap Build Completed 4.0 hr $0.00
Mechanical Parts Completed 4.0 hr $0.00
Electronics Completed Completed 8.0 hr $0.00
Firmware Upload Completed 3.0 hr $0.00
RepRap Frame Design Completed 7.0 hr $0.00

Rep-Start | Completed | Last Update: 2012-07-16
Oct 18, 2009
Originally the goal was to build a RepRap but after failing to find the plastic structural parts for RepRap the short term goal was shifted to building a RepStrap first, then a RepRap.

Extruder V2.0 | Completed | Last Update: 2012-07-16
Oct 22, 2009
Finding the parts for the laser cut acrylic RepStrap is proving to be quite challenging so the current plan is to build whatever component is available starting with the extruder while the rest of the components are located. It will be good exercise in SMT Soldering.

Taking the Plunge | Completed | Last Update: 2012-07-16
Dec 01, 2009

Taking the plunge head first into a shallow pool is the result of not reading through the reprap documentations more carefully.

I finally have the electronics portion of the extruder controller V2.2 assembled. . . I thought the initial reflow soldering was passable until I took some desoldering wicks to the SMT chips and took out almost half of the visible solders. Yicks!

Anyway so I have an assembled extruder controller V2.2 only to realize that the Arduino based reprap controller I was so fixated on is old gen2 technology. I've been itching to try out my Arduino board ever since I took the practical electro-mechanical class at ThePublicSchool. Unfortunately, the new gen3 electronics no longer uses Arduino as the main controller and instead uses Sanguino. Gen3 electronics is also "cleaner" looking with integrated power circuit from the main controller board to the peripheral boards such as as the extruder and stepper motor drive via RJ45 connectors.

Arduino, Sanguino what's the difference right? They're both AVR based with Sanguino having more I/O pins and memory. . . probably some other useful stuff as well but I'm still in the AVRTiny phase so that's as deep as my eyes can read and brain can absorb.

Going back to taking the plunge part. So I have the extruder controller with no way to test it. To get around that problem I ordered as many parts as I can to complete the electronics portion of the Repstrap build. Once all the components arrive I will give a cost summary for the electronics portion and start working on the Sanguino based motherboard.

RepRap Motherboard V1.2 | Completed | Last Update: 2012-07-16
Dec 02, 2009

Most of the parts for building the 3rd generation Reprap electronics have arrived and the cost of the mother board is listed below. Too bad Makerbot is out of stock on their motherboard kit because it took hours spanning several days to order, receive, sort, and group all the parts from three different vendors. . . . and this is just for the motherboard, I haven't even started kitting together the 3 stepper motor drive boards.

Part Name Qty Vendor Vendor Part No Cost Ext Cost
.100 breakaway header 6 Mouser 571-9-146304-0 0.086 0.513
1.8K ohm resistor 1206 5 Mouser 263-1.8K-RC 0.050 0.250
10 pin female header 4 Digi-Key S7008-ND 0.458 1.832
10 pin IDC header 4 Mouser 649-71600-010LF 0.800 3.200
100nf ceramic capacitor 1206 3 Mouser 80-C1206C104K5R 0.070 0.210
10K ohm resistor 1206 4 Mouser 290-10K-RC 0.050 0.200
10uF electrolytic capacitor D55 1 Mouser 647-UUT1H100MCL1GS 0.080 0.080
15pF ceramic capacitor 1206 2 Mouser 77-VJ12A100V150J 0.060 0.120
16Mhz crystal 1 Mouser 695-HC49US-16-U 0.580 0.580
180 ohm resistor 1206 1 Mouser 263-180-RC 0.050 0.050
1k ohm resistor 1206 2 Mouser 290-1.0K-RC 0.050 0.100
3.3k ohm resistor 1206 3 Mouser 263-3.3K-RC 0.050 0.150
30 ohm resistor 5W 1 Digi-Key 30W-5-ND 0.340 0.340
3M sd card socket 1 Mouser 57-SD-RSMT-2-MQ 1.300 1.300
4 pin female header 4 Digi-Key S7037-ND 0.383 1.532
4.7k ohm resistor 1206 2 Mouser 263-4.7K-RC 0.050 0.100
6 pin IDC header 1 Mouser 649-75869-131LF 0.430 0.430
Atmega644P tqfp 1 Digi-Key ATMEGA65P-20AU-ND 7.760 7.760
ATX Motherboard header 1 Mouser 538-39-29-3206 1.860 1.860
Green LED 1206 1 Digi-Key 350-2053-1-ND 0.238 0.238
Omron B3F-1000 Button 1 Mouser 653-B3F-1000 0.230 0.230
RED LED 1206 1 Mouser 645-598-8210-107F 0.100 0.100
RJ45 Jack 4 Mouser 571-5555164-1 0.740 2.960
SN75176A SOIC 1 Mouser 595-SN75176AD 0.880 0.880
SPDT switch 1 Mouser 10SP001 0.380 0.380
RepRap Motherboard V1.2 PCB 1 MakerBot tv274 8.000 8.000

Subtotal: 33.395

StepperMotorDriver V2.3 | Completed | Last Update: 2012-07-16
Dec 04, 2009

The laborious task of kitting together the Stepper Motor Driver V2.3 is done. Though I just discovered that Stepper Motor Drive V3.0 is in the works. It looks like the stepper motor driver IC will be changed from Allegro A3982 to A3977. I haven't progressed far enough in my microcontroller circuit building to understand the different but a quick search says something about A3977 gives a 25% increase in peak current. The cost for Stepper Motor Driver V2.3 is as follows.

Part Name Qty Vendor Vendor Part No Cost Ext Cost
.156” 4 position housing 1 Mouser 538-09-50-3041 0.250 0.25
.156” crimp-on connector 4 Mouser 538-08-52-0072 0.080 0.32
.156 header 4 Mouser 538-26-48-1245 0.084 0.34
.22uF ceramic capacitor 1206 1 Digi-Key 339-1251-1-NDD 0.143 0.14
0.25 ohm resistor 2512 2 Digi-Key CSRN20.25FICT-ND 0.608 1.22
10 pin IDC connector 2 Digi-Key 609-1839-ND 0.710 1.42
10 pin IDC header 1 Mouser 649-75869-101LF 1.030 1.03
100nF ceramic capacitor 1206 5 Mouser 80-C1206C104K5R 0.070 0.35
100uF electrolytic capacitor D55 2 Digi-Key 493-3209-1-ND 0.867 1.73
10k ohm resistor 1206 1 Mouser 290-10K-RC 0.050 0.05
10k trimpot 1 Mouser 72-T70YE-10K 0.740 0.74
1k ohm reistor 1206 4 Mouser 290-1.0K-RC 0.050 0.20
1nF ceramic capacitor 1206 1 Mouser 80-C1206C102K5R 0.090 0.09
2.2k ohm resistor 1206 1 Mouser 263-2.2K-RC 0.050 0.05
4 pin molex connector 1 Mouser 538-15-24-4745 0.840 0.84
7805DT 1 Mouser 863-MC7805CDTRKG 0.470 0.47
A9382 1 Digi-Key 620-1299-1-ND 5.810 5.81
Green LED 1206 1 Digi-Key 350-2053-1-ND 0.238 0.24
Red LED 1206 3 Mouser 645-598-8210-107F 0.100 0.30
RJ45 Jack 2 Mouser 571-5555164-1 0.740 1.48
Stepper Motor Drive V2.3 PCB 2 MakerBot tv448 3.000 6.00
10 pin ribbon cable 1 Mouser 523-191-2801-110FT 0.470 0.47

Subtotal: 23.54

Uploading Firmware | Completed | Last Update: 2012-07-16
Dec 16, 2009

After many days of futile attempts to upload the firmware . . . . I finally succeeded in uploading the reprap firmware through arduino ide. Originally though I was unable to load the bootloader through arduino ide, I was able to upload it using commandline avrdude. The error message I received through arduino ide is,

avrdude: stk500_2_ReceiveMessage(): timeout

I did not know if the error is due to assembly/soldering error or from improper arduino IDE setting. Since I can view the ATmega644p setting and upload the bootloader with avrdude I lean toward a misconfigured arduino setting. I tried the reprap forum as well as googling for solutions, but still could not solve my problem. I came across a blog that mentioned improper baudrate setting and I started to experiment with different baudrate setting using avrdude. I found that only 115200 seems to work and other baudrate settings gave timeout errors similar to the error from arduino. I ended up inserting


into my arduino board.txt file and following the upload instruction with the obligatory reset the firmware loaded, the green power led lights up and I was able to turn the ATX power supply on with the reprap motherboard on/off switch. Wow!

Next is to test the stepper driver and extruder board

Testing Motherboard V1.2 | Completed | Last Update: 2012-07-16
Dec 09, 2009

One of the three stepper motor drive V2.3 board along with motherboard V1.2 has been completed but I had trouble getting the Motherboard to show signs of life. I was able to load the bootloader through avrdude with a parallel port programmer from Sparkfun but could not get the arduino IDE to work properly. It took a while to convert the 10 pin isp to the 6 pin isp format, which basically was just remapping of the MOSI, MISO, VCC, GRD, Reset, and SCK.

Imperial Stepper | Completed | Last Update: 2012-07-16
Dec 25, 2009

Wow. The Imperial March never sounded so good. Stepper Motor Driver works! The stepper motor driver test program was loaded into the Sanguino motherboard using USBtiny from adafruit. I switched from parallel STK200 programmer to usb based USBTiny programmer in hope of using the arduino IDE to upload the reprap firmware sketches however I am still having difficulties loading programs into the Sanguino motherboard using the Arduino IDE.

The NEAM 23 stepper motor is from Makerbot and costs $28.00 each. Too bad the stepper motor is not made in a free and democratic country. Anyone know of a US source for the Nanotec stepper motors?

Resuming Repstrap Build | Completed | Last Update: 2012-07-16
Jun 27, 2010

I got a bit rusty after 6 month of inactivity. I started with the stepper motor driver. Sorting out the .22uf and the 1nf capacity took a while and I had forgotten to place the red and green led until the hotplate was already at ~202C and I saw the missing leds. . . Hastily, I turn the hotplace back on, placed the leds and added a dab of soldering paste onto each pad. Hopefully, I didn't overcook the whole assembly by tripling the soldering time. . . .

I was able to complete one motor driver board assembly plus two Optoendstops.

Mechanical Parts | Completed | Last Update: 2012-07-16
Jun 28, 2010

The cost of the mechanical parts are as follows. The actual cost is probably a little less. The parts where ordered from McMaster back in January so I don't remember how many "extra" parts I ordered that may have inflated the overall order. Anyway, the pulleys and the rods are a bit pricy.

Part Name Qty Vendor Vendor Part No Cost Ext Cost
Trapezoidal-Tooth Belt /ft 16 McMaster 7959K21 1.810 28.96
Timing Belt Pulley 20 Teeth 3 McMaster 1375K39 9.810 29.43
Timing Belt Pulley 60 Teeth 4 McMaster 1375K57 14.630 58.52
O1 Tool Steel Rod 3' 10 McMaster 88625K67 4.880 48.80
316 Stainless M8 Rod 8 McMaster 94185A160 11.95 95.60
Misc Spring, Bolt, and Nuts various McMaster various 107.68 107.68

Subtotal: 368.99

Electronics Completed | Completed | Last Update: 2012-07-16
Jul 14, 2010

At long last the reprap electronics components are completed. The last stepper motor driver 2.3 has been reflow soldered along with the assembly of the 4 remaining OptoEndstops.

Using the stepper motor test program it seems that all the servo motors and optoendstops are running.

Firmware Upload | Completed | Last Update: 2012-07-16
Jul 19, 2010

Documentation on the Reprap firmware is a bit confusing with multiple unreferenced version. Following the installation instruction, the Sanguino Master Firmware was uploaded into Reprap Motherboard V1.2 via a Atmel STK500v2 through serial port. ReplicatorG was then installed and interfaces with the RepRap Motherboard through a Sparkfun USB-TTL board via a usb port.

It should be a fairly simple process, but there are a few versions of the firmware upload instruction each using a different version of the firmware. Before compiling and uploading each firmware, the bootloader must be burned through the Arduino IDE. . . . so it took a couple hours of trial and error to figure it out. I think the file contains the latest motherboard firmware and also the latest reprap interface, ie ReplicatorG. . . I think.

The X, Y and Z axis stepper motor tests okay with the Reprap interface.

RepRap Frame Design | Completed | Last Update: 2012-07-16
Nov 10, 2011

Preliminary frame design with 80/20 aluminum extrusions using the original Darwin xyz gantry concept instead of Mandel's sliding bed design. The targeted work envelop is a 12 inch cube.

TheCuriousPenguin - 2012
Free as in