RAMPS 1.4 Cooling System
Upon recieving my new RAMPS 1.4 board I decided to figure out a mount as well as an efficient cooling system. I looked around onlind to find some options and the majority of the options were printable ones that dont leave any access to wiring. They also ran with a single 30mm fan or smaller which didn’t seem very effective for cooling. Most of them being top mount didn’t cool the drivers very well and left no cooling for the Arduino Mega. The most effective angle for cooling is to blow across the chips from the side.
After mounting 2 fans to do this job I also mounted one larger fan to pull up any hot air and expell it outward. I used 2 pieces of acrylic to make the top and bottem platform. 4 large bolts make up the standoffs between the two pieces of acrylic. I also decided to mount the 2 side fans which were salvaged from an xbox 360 on a hinge. This would allow me to adjust the fan angle which will let me tune in my cooling. I also ordered heatsinks for each of my drivers. As of now I will be running 4 out of the 5 that RAMPS can handle. This will leave me a spare until I add my second bowden extruder. More than likely I will use my 2nd extruder to be able to print disolvable support material.
I’ve decided to control these fans through a stand alone setup. You can go a few different ways at this point. You can set them up with a standard on/off switch, a potentiometer for speed control or buy a computer fan controller. The nice part about using a fan controller is the ability to moniter fan speeds, auto adjustments by temperature and controll 4 or more fans with one controller. I decided to go the fan controller route since a have a very extensive cooling setup throughout my Printrbot.
They now sell touch screen fan controllers for about $25 at any computer store such as Frys Electronics. With this fan controller I can run and moniter my RAMPS/driver fans, Z-axis motor fans, PSU fans as well as air flow fans mounted on my Printrstand. The only other fan I will be using is the one mounted on my extruder and it will be controlled via commands in pronterface. Using a fan controller with its own power source also helps to alleviate any added stress/power consumption on the xbox 360 PSU that will be running everything else on my Printrbot Plus.
Posted from RepRap Squad HQ