Have you seen this printing mechanism?

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Have you seen this printing mechanism?

Postby DaveGadgeteer » Thu May 29, 2014 6:49 am

Seems quite simple/inexpensive. I hadn't seen anything similar before today.
http://www.wired.com/2014/05/mod-t-printer/
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Re: Have you seen this printing mechanism?

Postby Nicholas Seward » Thu May 29, 2014 6:20 pm

Yeah, that is a great low speed, low volume solution. I do question how much cheaper it will be. I think they might be over promising. It looks like they haven't made a deal with the manufacturer. I hope I am wrong.
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Re: Have you seen this printing mechanism?

Postby Feign » Thu Jun 26, 2014 7:08 pm

They seem to have a deal with Dragon Innovation, which was the manufacturer of the Sifteo cubes, the Pebble, and the first few generations of the Makerbot. From the looks of it, they had their deal with them before the IGG campaign even started, making the it pretty much just a pre-order system and publicity campaign, rather than a make-or-break funding attempt.

Also, the company making the MOD-T is a subsidiary of IdeaLabs, the company that originally made the Picasa software and the NetZero ISP (granted, they're a very small subsidiary, but still, that's a heck of a backer). They're not exactly the garage-based startup that most Indiegogo campaigns tend to be from.

That said, they're clearly not going open source either, and they might already get into a legal fight with Tekma3D.
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Re: Have you seen this printing mechanism?

Postby Nicholas Seward » Thu Jun 26, 2014 7:15 pm



Here is what I posted on Google+
Both Tekma3D and New Matter both came out with printers that use crossed splines to drive the x and y of their printers. (link below if you are interested) They both are in the process of trying to acquire a patent on the technology. Being the open source hippie that I am, here is a system that is functionally the same but should give a wide berth to the patents.

To be clear, I don't think this kind of system (screw or spline) is very good. I do think it is fun to watch.

If the system has opposing racks as shown, one screw should be left handed and the other should be right handed. (I messed up modelling it and they are both left handed. It will still work but the math isn't as nice and the resolution isn't the same in all directions.) If all the racks face the same way, like the MOD-T, then you can use two left handed screws. The system is driven just like a CoreXY system.

The screw should also have a fairly large travel. The screws in the video are 1/2x8-8start ACME screws so there is 1 inch of travel per rotation.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/44 ... 3d-printer
https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/new- ... r-everyone
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Re: Have you seen this printing mechanism?

Postby Feign » Thu Jun 26, 2014 8:59 pm

The Tekma printer claims to use crossed splines like your video is demonstrating, but the pictures of the TM-1 look like it's using racks and pinions. The MOD-T uses racks and pinions, and uses a much more traditional coordinate system (possibly one of the reasons why it's 1/5th the cost).

If the TM-1 really does use crossed splines in the final product, then the New Matter folks probably won't have a case against Tekma, if Tekma is calling Pinions Splines, though they do.
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Re: Have you seen this printing mechanism?

Postby Nicholas Seward » Thu Jun 26, 2014 9:33 pm

Splines can be many things. For both the printers they mean long spur gears. I on the other hand am using screws.
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Re: Have you seen this printing mechanism?

Postby Feign » Fri Jun 27, 2014 2:09 pm

Ohh, okay, for some reason my mind was getting spline and screw mixed up, thinking that the mechanism you posted was what Tekma was claiming they already use on the TM-1. Of course, I haven't read either patent claim so I have no idea if this would be able to sidestep them. It's interesting how it follows the same math as CoreXY, and convenient since all the work is already done in that case.

I agree though that it's far from optimal, but then sometimes being the best performance isn't the criteria. I might be biased, since I pledged for a MOD-T, but Tekma's performance claims never set well with me. New Matter's claim that the spline and pinion is optimized for mass-manufacture fits pretty well with what I know about manufacturing things.
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Re: Have you seen this printing mechanism?

Postby Nicholas Seward » Fri Jun 27, 2014 2:58 pm

The thing that concerns me on the MOD-T is that only gravity is used for engaging the racks. It is possible to get the platform to tip in some extreme circumstances.

The TM1 and my rendering can get more positive engagement and could be tuned with springs.

That said I think the MOD-T will be a great first printer. Have fun and when you are ready build your own design.
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Re: Have you seen this printing mechanism?

Postby Feign » Fri Jun 27, 2014 7:01 pm

Heh, as I think I've mentioned, I don't currently have any 3D printers to my name, though I've worked with them in the past (mostly the kind I could never afford on my budget). I have a feeling that one of the first things I'd print with it is a GUS body... (heck, the firmware for it might be perfected by then! :D )
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