FoldaRap2.1 Build Manual

From RepRap
Jump to: navigation, search

Actual Version

The build manual for the most recent version of the FoldaRap is here

Tools required

  • 1,5 mm hexagonal wrench (for the pulleys grub screw)
  • 2 mm hexagonal wrench (for M3 counterksunk bolts and pneumatic fittings "MA-12-03-M5")
  • 2,5 mm hexagonal wrench (for normal M3 cap-head bolts and the rounded M4 bolts used for the frame)
  • a flat screwdriver (for the psu's screw terminals)
  • s small screwdriver (to set the drivers current)

You may need also :

  • a 5,5mm flat spanner or a small pliers (for m3 nuts)
  • something to cut wires, and strip them (knife, automatic striper, etc.)
  • a lighter for the heat-shrink sleeves
  • soldering iron (to eventually solder the endstops)
  • small files (round, flat) to eventually ream the printed parts


Foldarap hardware-kit.jpg

5  20x20mm beam 6mm slot 200mm - Motedis or see Aluminium profile
6  20x20mm beam 6mm slot 300mm
54 M4 T-nut for 6mm slot - Motedis
54 m4x8 round head bolt - Fix'n Vis Round Head Bolt
4  m5 nylon nut / Z-rod (4) [3]
3  m3 nylock nut / bed leveling (3) nylock nut
15 m3 nut / hinges (2), bed (3), Y-belt-clamp (2), extruder (2), plug (2), psu (4) - Fix'n Vis Nuts
14 m3x8 bolt / Z-motors (4), Y-motor (2), psu (2), male plug (2), board-mount (2), hotend (2) - Fix'n Vis Bolts
8  m3x10 bolt / hotend (4), y-belt-clamp (2), extruder (2)
1  m3x16 bolt / extruder (1)
4  m3x20 bolt / hinges (2), Y-idler (1), extruder (1)
5  m3x25 bolt / hotend-holder (2), fan-holder (1), (extruder 1), z-endstop (1)
4  m3x30 bolt / x-slider (4)
3  m3x30 countersunk bolt / bed (3)
2  m3x35 / extruder (2)
2  230mm threaded rod m5 - Fix'n Vis
2  extruder spring - RS751483 or see Springs
3  bed spring - RS 751455 or RS 751607
1m spiral wrapping band for tidying the wires - RS227874
7  6,35mm ferule - Radiospare to crimp the cable for the plug and the switch
2  5mm to 5mm flexible coupling
3  linear bearing, LM6UU or if you can Igus RJMP-01-06 - See Bearing
2  300mm smooth rod 6mm - (can be salvaged from usual scanners and printers) or see Smooth rod
5  603zz bearings / X-slider (2), Y-idler (2), extruder-idler (1)  - See Bearing
1  250mm T2.5 belt 5mm wide - RepRapWorld or see Belts_and_Pulleys
1  600mm T2.5 belt 5-6mm wide
2  T2.5 pulleys - Belts_and_Pulleys
330mm PTFE Tubing for bowden extruder (2mm inner diam. and 3mm outer) - See Bowden
2  Pneumatic fittings for 3mm tubing, with M5 thread - See Bowden or emakershop / I'm using the MA12-03-M5 but others can work
1  direct drive gear - Maritime-models (see Drive-gear)
1 aluminium bed plate (4mm thick)
1  roll of kapton - See Kapton Tape#Vendors
20 zip-ties


5 nema14 stepper motors - [4]
3 miniature microswitch endstop 20mm - [5]
1 standard male plug IEC C13 C14 - RS 5392045
1 standard female cable - EU/C13 - UK RS6266739 / US RS7316163
1 big blue switch - RS 5287858
1 RepRappro Hotend - emaker
1 40x40mm heatsink - RS 6744769 to make a more compact hotend
1-2 small fan (40 x 40 x 10 mm), for the hotend (can be bought with one) and the extruder motor - RepRapWorld or see Fan
1 100k thermistors - Mouser
1m of 18AWG wire (200mm red, 200m black, 150mm green) for the switch/plug/psu - Read also WiresAndConnectors
10m of 26AWG (3.6m red, 3.2m green, 2.0m blue) for the sensors and fans
1 kapton film heater - Open Edge
1 Minitronic board [6]
1 USB cable A to B [7]
1 12V power supply : 5A (cold bed) or 10A or [8] (for heated bed)


1 Azteeg_X1 board - [9] + 4 drivers
1 usb to mini-usb cable - [10]
1 12V power supply : 10A

Laser cut parts

See the github repo and eMakerShop, you can have them from Ponoko or ThingiBOX too

The bed can also be made of acrylic in case of a non-heated bed.

FoldaRap bed-plate 1.1.jpg

Printed parts (total : xx)

See also the github repo



  • 0.3mm drill bit [11] (or 0.5mm, depending of the nozzle)

General tips

  • Read the whole manual once or twice before starting, to get an overview of the build
    • Basically we have a main frame and several sub-assemblies, some can be done in parallel : gather your friends and establish a record for minimum building time ! (Actual best record : 4 hours)
  • Work on a cutting mat if you have one, it will protect your table plus they often show a millimetre grid that will be useful to check the bolts length (with some experience you will recognize them just by looking or holding one).
  • Place you mouse over a picture in a list if you wonder what part it is
  • In case of doubt, don't hesitate to have a look at the 3d model in Sketchup (before/during the build), even if about a next version of the machine it will show you the folded/unfolded state of the machine and you can play around with it :)
Ok let's start
It should take approximately 12 hours to put everything together.
From step 1 to 4 : 2-4 hours

Know the parts

Firstly, have a look at all the part and learn what everything is.

How to insert a T-nut

T-nut insertion.jpg Tightening torque : 2.5 Nm (+/- 5%)


Base Frame

Rear Base

Foldarap2 foot-rear-left.jpg x1 foot-rear-left Foldarap2 foot-rear-right.jpg x1 foot-rear-right 20x20 200mm.jpg x2 200mm profile M4x8 round-head.jpg x4 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x4 t-nut

Front Base

Foldarap2 foot-front-left.jpg x1 foot-front-left Foldarap2 foot-front-right.jpg x1 foot-front-right 20x20 200mm.jpg x1 200mm profile M4x8 round-head.jpg x2 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x2 t-nut

Base Frame

Foldarap frame rear assembled.jpg x1 rear assembly Foldarap2 frame front assembled.jpg x1 front assembly Foldarap2 hinge-inner-left.jpg x1 hinge-inner-left Foldarap2 hinge-inner-right.jpg x1 hinge-inner-right

20x20 300mm.jpg x4 300mm profile M4x8 round-head.jpg x10 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x10 t-nut


FoldaRap y-idler 603zz.jpg y-idler M3x20.jpg x1 m3x20 623zz.jpg x2 603zz bearing M4x8 round-head.jpg x2 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x2 t-nut



Foldarap y-motor.jpg x1 y-motor C14 CEI male-plug.jpg x1 plug M3 nut.jpg x2 m3 nut M3x8.jpg x2 m3x8


M3x8.jpg x2 m3x8 Nema14.jpg x1 nema 14 stepper motor Pulley-T2.5 paopart.jpg x1 pulley


6,35mm-faston-ferule.jpg x7 ferules 6432-heatshrink-sleeve.jpg heat-shrink sleeve Big-blue-power-switch RS-5287858.jpg x1 switch M4x8 round-head.jpg x3 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x3 t-nut

A part of the wiring depend of the combination of electronic board and power supply, for other version : FoldaRap_power-supplies


Z-Left / Z-Right

Foldarap2 hinge-outer-left.jpg x1 hinge-outer-left Foldarap2 hinge-outer-right.jpg x1 hinge-outer-right Foldarap2 z-motor-bracket-left.jpg x1 z-motor-left Foldarap2 z-motor-bracket-right.jpg x1 z-motor-right

20x20 300mm.jpg x2 300mm profile M4x8 round-head.jpg x4 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x4 t-nut


Nema14.jpg x2 nema14 M3x8.jpg x4 m3x8


FoldaRap2 base-frame assembled.jpg FoldaRap2 Z-axis 08.jpg M3x20.jpg x2 m3x20 M3 nut.jpg x2 m3 nut


Power Supply

Different kind of power supply have been used in FoldaRap builds, if you don't recognize yours look at this page : FoldaRap power-supplies

Anyway, the principle is always 1) bolt the power supply on the plate, 2) then the plate on the base of the frame

Flat-120w-psu.jpg x1 power supply M3x8.jpg x2 m3x8 M3 nut.jpg x2 m3 nut

Foldarap2 underplate.jpg x1 lasercut underplate M4x8 round-head.jpg x3 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x3 t-nut

Z-axis position

M4x8 round-head.jpg x4 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x4 t-nut


Foldarap2 Z-slider-left.jpg z-slider-left Foldarap2 Z-slider-right.jpg z-slider-right



Foldarap2 X-slider.jpg x-slider Nema14.jpg x1 nema14 stepper motor Timing pulley.jpg x1 pulley

M3x30.jpg x4 M3x30 countersunk head 623zz.jpg x2 603zz bearing


FoldaRap2 X-slider fan-holder.jpg fan-holder M3x30.jpg x1 m3x25


20x20 200mm.jpg x1 200mm profile T2.5belt.jpg x1 250mm belt M4x8 round-head.jpg x2 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x2 t-nut


M4x8 round-head.jpg x2 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x2 t-nut


M5 nut.jpg x4 M5 nylon nut 230-235mm threaded-rod.jpg x2 M5 threaded rod 230mm Flexible-coupling.jpg x2 flexible coupling



Foldarap2 extruder-left nema14.jpg extruder-left Pneumatic-fitting MA1203M5.jpg x1 pneumatic-fitting M3x16.jpg x1 m3x16 623zz.jpg x1 603zz bearing

(and/or extruder-right Foldarap2 extruder-right nema14.jpg)

Nema14.jpg x1 nema14 stepper motor Maritime-models drive-gear.jpg x1 knurled insert (juste one) M3x8.jpg x2 m3x10 M3x20.jpg x1 m3x20

M3x35.jpg x2 M3x35 Foldarap extruder-spring RS751483.jpg x2 spring M3 nut.jpg x2 M3 nut

Top-frame (need update)

Foldarap2 z-top-left.jpg x1 Foldarap2 z-top-right.jpg x1 20x20 200mm.jpg x1 M4x8 round-head.jpg x4 T-nut.jpg x4

FoldaRap-handle.jpg x1 M4x8 round-head.jpg x2 T-nut.jpg x2

Reprap-org plate 160mm.jpg x1 M4x8 round-head.jpg x2 T-nut.jpg x2

Great ! You are almost done !

FoldaRap2 almost-there.jpg

Have a pause, you need to be relaxed for the next step, or you can also just head to the end :)



FoldaRap-hotend Heater-block.jpg x1 heater block FoldaRap-hotend nozzle.jpg x1 nozzle FoldaRap-hotend Barrel 00.jpg x1 barrel Thermistor 100k.jpg x1 thermistor


FoldaRap-hotend Heatsink-v3.jpg x1 hotend heatsink (+ tube holder) Tubing.jpg x1 PTFE tube

FoldaRap2 X-slider hotend-holder.jpg x1 hotend holder M3x8.jpg x4 m3x8


Fan404010.png x1 fan Fan-railings.png x1 fan railings M3x16.jpg x4 m3x16 M3 washer.jpg x4 m3 washer

Cartridge heater

Cartridge-heater.jpg x1 cartridge heater


Ferule.JPG x2 1mm ferrule 6432-heatshrink-sleeve.jpg x2 heatshrink sleeve

Male-casing.jpg x1 male casing Female-ferrule.jpg x6 female ferrule

Cable harness

2pin-wire connector.JPG x2 2 pin-wire with connector Cartridge-wires-70cm-1.jpg x2 cartridge wire (70cm)

Female-casing.jpg x1 female casing Male-ferrule.jpg x6 male ferrule End-piece.jpg x2 end piece



Foldarap1.1 bed-plate.jpg x1 bed plate Foldarap2 kapton-heater.jpg x1 film-heater

M3x30 countersunk-head.jpg x3 m3x30 countersunk M3 nut.jpg x3 m3 nut Bed springs RS751455.jpg x3 springs


Foldarap y-carriage lasercut.jpg x1 y-carriage LM6UU.jpg x3 linear bearing Zipties.jpg x4 zip-tie

Foldarap belt-clamp.jpg x1 belt-clamp T2.5belt.jpg x1 belt (600mm) M3x12.jpg x2 m3x10 M3 nut.jpgx2 m3 nut M3 washer.jpg x2 m3 washer M3 nut nylock.jpgx3 m3 nylock


Housing flat 2pin.jpg x1 2pin housing Female-crimp-terminal.jpg x2 female crimp terminal

Electronic Board

Previous instructions for the AzteegX1 / Melzi

Minitronicsv1.jpg x1 Foldarap board-mount.jpg x1 board-mount M3x8.jpg x2 m3x8 M4x8 round-head.jpg x2 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x2 t-nut


Setting the drivers current

Now lets plug everything to the board !


Look at the Minitronics_10 page, it is well documented and the wiring should be quite easy with the male/female connectors.


  1. cut wires
  2. solder wires
  3. insulate
  4. crimp
  5. casing
  6. in place
  7. wiring


Micro-switch with-lever.jpg x1

glued on the side

FoldaRap2 x-endstop 00.jpg


Micro-switch with-lever.jpg x1 Zipties.jpg x1 zip-tie


Micro-switch with-lever.jpg x1 M4x8 round-head.jpg x1 m4x8 T-nut.jpg x1 t-nut Zipties.jpg x1 zip-tie (or 2 m2x10 bolt)


  • Y-motor
  • Z-motors
  • X-motor
  • Extruder-motor


  • thermistor (blue 75cm)
  • heater (red 75cm)
  • fan : on a 12v pin (must be always on)


  • printed-part cooling fan: if the hotend's fan is alway on, this one is controlled by the electronic board via the "cooling fan" screw terminal (turned on by sending Mcode "M106 Sxxx" (xxx being between 0 and 255), turned off by "M107" but Slic3r automate this)
  • Cooling the Minitronics_10's PCB is mandatory according to RichRap in RepRap Magazine 2:
The PCB is used as a heatsink and must be cooled from the underside with a 40mm fan or bigger, this is important to do with such a compact board.

FoldaRap minitronics fans-wiring.png


Finish by this one, as it is moving, the wires need to be above all the other wires.

  • thermistor
  • heater element (the two thicker wires)


  • spiral wrapping band : for the wires that came out of the base.



Smooth-rod-300mm.jpg x2 Micro-switch with-lever.jpg x1 (with 32cm green wires for y-endstop) Zipties.jpg x6

Tape (5-10 min)

  • Kapton (polyimide) or blue tape (= outside masking tape, uv resistant usually with acrylic adhesive, PLA stick well to acrylic)


Making the bed parallel and zeroing

The Z-zero is made when making the bed parallel to the nozzle.

  1. Start by roughly makin it parallel
  2. then move the nozzle to the lowest point
  3. and adjust the 3 screws to move it regarding that height (by turning them until the homing move stop lowering the bed)
  4. repeat on each corners so the zero is exactly when the nozzle stop touching the bed (true for the four corners+center)
  • I like to start with the Y direction with the two bolts, then with the remaining one

<videoflash>35Xv_R8U_hU|320|240</videoflash> Here is a video to show what I mean by "the homing move stop lowering the bed"

<videoflash>rjIMmzltyLQ|320|240</videoflash> "Bad" (the bolts need to be tightened)

  • Once the plan is set from left to right you can check front/end
  • after that it's supposed to be parallel but may need few more tweaks that will be revealed by observing the first layer of a print

Software side

  • Skeinforge : you will only have to add a little offset (altitude), to have the desired height for the first layer, usually the same as your layer height.
  • Slic3r : leave z-offset at 0, it will add one layer height automatically (you still may have to adjust it slightly to fine tune the Z-zero, depending on where your endstop have been glued).

Another advantage of that : by moving to the center of the bed from the zero height, the nozzle is also wiped by the side of the bed from any purged plastic ;-)

Go go go first print !!!

FoldaRap007 first-print.jpg

This article will probably help you along your first print :)

Also have a look at the User Manual