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Printrbot’s Aluminum Extruder Goes Plastic

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We recently found the printable version of printrbots new aluminum extruder. I wanted to make an adapter plate for our dual extruder setup on our plus as it comes with 2 DDE. Soon Printrbot will be offering the aluminum extruder on the plus’s dual extruder kit. We wanted to test out the design before we spent almost $100 on 2 new aluminum DDE.

I think that the printed version may work great as I’ve heard of issues with the aluminum extruder acting as a heatsink causing jams. There are several reasons why I would like to use the aluminum extruders design. The main one is the orientation of the motors and the second is the convenience involved with the new design.
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If I can get the new design to work properly than I will also need to custom design new fan mounts. I want to use the aluminum extruder mounts as they are an important part of the dual extruders design. They also allow for easy adjustments of hotend heights. I printed off the first of the two that I will need and tomorrow I plan on printing the second so I can start to mock up the adapter mount.

You can find the printable version of this DDE HERE
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Update: March 26th 2014
I printed the first of the two required for my dual extruder setup. I was rather surprised to see how well the parts printed with out adding any support structures. The parts required a little bit of clean up to get everything to fit right. I tested them on the dual extruder plate because I was worried that they both wouldn’t fit correctly. After some mock up it looked as if it wouldn’t need much if any modifications other than a mount plate. I only have one position that I can mount these because I want to reuse the aluminum extruder mount. I plan on printing off the second extruder today ao that I can figure out mounting points on the carriage.

Here’s the first extruder to be finished, with the 2nd printing away
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Now that I’ve printed out my two mock up versions and tested them on the dual extruder mounting plate. I can see that they are a little bit too wide to fit with the stock dual aluminum extruder mount. I will have to modify them a little bit in order to fit both of them correctly. I can either modify the model, modify it after its printed or design a new dual extruder setup.

The wood direct drive extruders work fine as they are now but, I like the accessibility of the design as well as the orientation of the stepper motors. I also want to see if my smaller nema 17 custom Kysan steppers will do the job. Since I’m running 1.75mm filament, the smaller Kysans should have enough torque to do the job. The only way to know for sure is tontest them out. I do know that I will at least need to add heatsinks to them as I do know with my current setup. The question is, will I have to run 40mm fans as well.
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The two mock up versions pictured above were printed in PLA at 160mm p/s at 20% infill and .3 layer height. The final versions will be printed in ABS with much higher infill, slower print speeds to reduce any over shoot and more infill. I might change the layer height to .2 as well. The aluminum extruder mount works well to keep the heat away from the extruders.

Posted from RepRap Squad HQ

Printrbot – New All Aluminum Extruder, Now Available!!

Update: January 11th 2013
Printrbot is now offering the aluminum direct drive extruder while slowly phasing out the wood DDE. The simple is among the first printers to offer the aluminum extruder with the purchase of the kit or assembled unit. It is called the 2014 edition and also comes with an extended aluminum bed. You can buy the upgrade kit as well which will bring your older simple up to the new specs. A great deal for the price. If you buy the aluminum extruder upgrade kit by itself and you have a v1 plus or lc, make sure to check out thingiverse.com for adapter plates.

Printrbot has recently released some pics of their long anticipated aluminum extruder. They cut the fat off of the direct drive extruder (DDE) and dressed it up with a shiny new design. The new DDE is lighter, stronger, easier to load, boasting with design flare and just down right cool looking. They have re-oriented the spring tensioner which will allow for much easier swaps and adjustment. We anticipate the release of the production version of the dual and possibly triple extruder setup at the same time of the new DDE.

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Here it is in all its glory

With an estimated price of about $40 for the all aluminum DDE, it’s something anyone can afford and will surely boost print quality as well as reliability. In the dual extruder beta the DDE’s are placed side by side which eats up a bit of x axis travel. The new design is thought to be placed one behind the other, giving the overall layout a better look with better overall balance. Another thing to consider is the fact that aluminum won’t swell and be effected by heating cycles like the wood DDE. This means the new extruder is more of an investment, then an upgrade. I say this because it will save you money and frustration in the long run.

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You can see that these are mirrored version for dual extruder setups

We will be testing out the performance of the new DDE VS the wood DDE and reporting our findings for those who need a little more encouragement before buying. We expect the release of the dual extruder and all aluminum extruder to be very soon.

Posted from RepRap Squad HQ

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