I’m Back!

After a long 3 year break I am writing another blog entry.  So much has changed from the time I stopped posting.  I am married, I bought a different car, I’ve traveled outside of the United States, I went on a trip to Las Vegas, and now I own not one but four 3D printers.  Of course way more than that has changed, I started gardening again and I have probably another 5 hobbies I shouldn’t have taken on.  I also started an Etsy store.

My kit built 3D printer eventually started to have issues with the relay that controls the heat bed.  I believe I can resolve this issue, but instead purchased a new printer suited for my preferred printing styles.  I like ABS functional parts.  That feeling of creating something that resolves a problem in your daily life, no matter how simple, is amazing.  ABS is a great plastic for that purpose, so a purpose built enclosed printer is ideal.  My Prusa i3v MakerFarm was too open, and too big.  When I fix it I plan on printing mostly low warping plastics with it.  That 12″ cubed print area is still a very appealing feature, and to think its 3 years old!

So I ended up buying the Monoprice Maker Ultimate Printer.  It is a copy of the Wanhao Duplicator 6.  It has a steal frame and different movement than the Prusa.  Obviously it can also be fully enclosed with a purchased Plexiglass kit.  Printing ABS with this printer is everything I expected.  I have not attempted to print anything too tall yet, but the parts I have printed are strong and so incredibly accurate.  I also recently started printing with Nylon!  It even has infused carbon fibers.  I’m not sure of this particular brand of filament, but others claim to be as strong as aluminum.  The wear on the printer (nozzle mostly) will slightly be effected, but the results are worth it.  It does tent to ooze out way more than ABS, but somehow i don’t have stringing.  I still have the same settings I use with ABS on retraction and print speed.  Really, the only thing I changed was the printing temperature and the bed temperature.  Plus I had to start using glue stick again for first layer adhesion.

I also started using Simplify3D.  It seemed like the way to go.  I suppose its a big jump to go from free to paid software, but it seems like a great choice.  The gcode preview alone will save me on failed prints over time.

So that’s a little about what I am currently working on!  See you in 2024! (kidding, hopefully)

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