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Release status: working
The Prusa i3 (iteration 3) is the newest and current 3D Printer design by RepRap Core Developer Prusajr. The i3 incorporates lessons learned from the previous two Prusa designs, as well as other popular modern RepRap designs.
See also Prusa Mendel (iteration 2).
|'||Single Sheet Frame||Box Frame|
|Plastic Parts (exc. Extruder)||26||29|
|Non Printed Parts approx.||337||293|
|Controller Electronics||Almost all RepRap||Almost all RepRap|
|Printing Size||200 x 200 x 200||200 x 200 x 270|
|Motors||5 x NEMA 17 Stepper||5 x NEMA 17 Stepper|
|Frame Material||6mm Aluminium, Wood||12mm Wood|
|Frame Manufacture||Laser Cutter, CNC, Water Jet||Basic Woodwork Tools|
|Pro||Easy assembly||Rigid XZ to Y Connection|
|Con||Specialised Tools||Looks less professional?|
The following is a list of the main improvements made upon the Prusa Mendel Iteration 2
- Enhanced frame rigidity (prevents x backlash)
- Easy assembly
- Parametric files for multiple sizes/bearings or bushings
The development of the Prusa Mendel is hosted on github: https://github.com/josefprusa/Prusa3.
The STL files to make the printer can be found at Clone_wars:_Prusa_iteración_3. and here zipped up: File:Clonewars.zip Please note that the zipped files are not compatible with holes for the Z axis brackets in the Prusa3ALU-*.dxf drawings, at least the ones in the old/ folder in github. Also, the models for Y-axis brackets are for M8 rods. Compiling your own and investigating the Prusa github packages is highly recommended!
RP every .scad in this directory (except complete-printer) once. Aim for 0.3mm layers and 2.2 extrusion width (width over thickness), for 0.66mm stroke width. Printer is tested at this setting.
Using doc/complete-printer.scad as a visual clue and doc/manual.txt as a guide, build the printer.
Most major Prusa i3 Frame Styles fall into two categories: the Single Sheet Frame, and the Box Style Frame. The Single Sheet Frame is designed to be manufactured through the use of a Laser cutter, WaterJet, or CNC Mill / Router Table. There are two current development tracks within the Single Sheet Frame, an Aluminium frame style, and a gusseted Wood frame style. Both are designed to support 6mm or thicker framing material. Both the EiNSTeiN variant and the i3 Rework designs use single sheet aluminum frames, as do most kits. The Box Style Frame, on the other hand, is designed to be easily manufactured at home with basic woodworking tools. The Y-axis for both frame styles is similar to that of the older Prusa Mendel Iteration 2.
Single Sheet Frame
This is a frame created from a single sheet of metal, typically Aluminum, but can also be made from various Materials with a thickness greater than 6mm / 0.25 inch
- Looks professional (subjective)
- Requires specialised tools (e.g. Water flow jet cutter)
- Less rigid connection between XZ-frame and Y-frame part, however this can be somewhat rectified by the TwelvePro variant, which provides additional frame support.
Wood Sheet frame
This is a version of the sheet frame that is designed to be laser cut out of wood or plastic (eg. acrylic) if you don't have access to a waterjet cutter. The only difference is that this version has support gussets on the back side of the vertical frame (the side that doesn't have the z threaded rods).
Construction is the same.
Laser cutting files can be found at github.com/sgraber/Prusa3_LC.
- Looks professional (subjective)
- Requires specialized tools (e.g.laser cutter)
- Less rigid connection between XZ-frame and Y-frame part (Connects in the same way as the alu sheet frame)
Box Style Frame
This frame is created from 8 small sheets of wood.
- Can be created with standard DIY tools
- More rigid connection between XZ-frame and Y-frame part
- Looks less professional (subjective)
Alternate Box frame
This is a version of the boxed frame that uses only 5 parts instead of 8. It requires a little more work when cutting out the parts but less work to assemble.
Blueprints for the box can be found Here
The Prusa i3 uses, including the extruder, 5 NEMA17 stepper motors. Two of these motors, the Z axis motors, are connected to the same stepper driver of the electronics. If using Wade's Extruder, its stepper motor needs a minimum holding torque of 40Ncm (0.4Nm). More information can be found on the Stepper Motor page.
About any RepRap controller works for the Prusa i3. Required features: 4 stepper drivers, 1 thermistor input and 1 heater output for the extruder and optionally another thermistor/heater pair for the heated bed. Choosing the best one for your printer is mostly a matter of taste. For comparisons, see List of electronics, Comparison of Electronics and Alternative Electronics.
On November 12th, 2012 Josef Prusa (@josefprusa) tweeted a picture of his metal frame i3 with a custom dual extruder mounted.
//Need name, info, and link to this extruder and how to build it. Can anyone help? -idolcrasher
Previous posts on Prusa's twitter feed reveal that Sound (Slic3r's Developer) inspired Prusa to attach a dual extruder.
For Sheet Style,
For Box Style,
- http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:104557,but I recommend using threaded rod and bearings with this thing, like this
- Montando la Prusa Mendel i3 (Spanish) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-31Zn7wY7jk
- Aluminium Body i3 (Spanish) Video montaje completo por capítulos (OverCraft3D)
TODO add more solutions