Friday, November 04, 2005


Guy Fawkes Update

Here in New Zealand, there is a lull before the happy, normal, sane people of Laingholm turn into rabid pyromaniacs and make life busy for us volunteer firefighters. So, time for an update.

Adrian has successfully made a screw-driven Polymorph extrusion head, having solved the problem of the Polymorph binding up the driving screw. The MkII head is about half the weight and a quarter the complexity of the Mk I design. I'll let him have the joy of filling in the details on how he did it.

I've been preparing presentations for the last fortnight (including my first mention of RepRap at NZCS) but have now started designing some of the RepRap-able parts for the raising and lowering of the turntable. Despite having a nice machine and lots of memory, desigining such things as 79-toothed gears still takes quite a while. Ed's FDM design guide is invaluable for this. Here's the state of the work so far, the larger gears being around 100mm across:

I've also taken apart an inexpensive but effective cordless 3.6V screwdriver as a possible power source for driving extruders etc. The one I have was NZ$11 from Dick Smith Electronics (about four quid) and has a nice little planetary gearbox that should provide all the oomph we need - complete with "wall-wart" charger. Adrian's flexible MkII design will be able to cope with it. Here's the guts exposed:

Good catch on the cordless screwdriver as a source for gear motors! I've been going through countless catalogs looking at an endless selection of gearmotors differentiated by the Lord only knows what. I'm headed to the hardware store. :-D
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