The PipeDream project aims to lower the cost of entry to 3D printing in nylon without sacrificing an acceptable level of print quality. To this end, we began with easily and cheaply available 6" I.D. PVC sewer pipe as the gantry (or frame). A 2-foot(610mm) section costs about US$15, but a 10 or twenty foot-long piece can be had easily for less than US$1/foot, saving money in a group build. (Windows will be cut in the sides of the print area for access, and printed endplates will be used for the top and bottom, to mount the vertical parts for the carriages to ride on. Every effort is being exerted to make the bulk of the parts purchasable at local hardware stores/home centers/Walmart, such as the 1/8" steel rods for the carriage guides, and the 75# fishing line for moving the carriages. Presently, the endplates must be printed on a larger printer (like a Mendel or Rostock), but a future development will be a multipart endplate that can be assembled and then welded together with acetone, allowing the Pipedream to reproduce itself.
- Printed Parts: ~20
- Non-Printed Parts: ~20 not counting screws, nuts, etc. More accurate counts and a parts list are being generated as work progresses on the design.
- Total Cost: US$200-250
- Material Cost
- Printed Parts: 12 + extruder (at this point): Top end plate, Bottom end plate, 3 pulleys, 3 idler pulleys, 3 carriages, 1 tool holder.
- Vitamins: PVC Sewer Pipe (150mm I.D.)2 feet long US$15.50, 6x 3.14mmx305mm M304 stainless steel shafts (US$30), 3.17mm I.D. brass sleeve (US$TBD)
- Electronics: RAMPS 1.4
- Printer Dimensions: 165mm dia x ~380mm tall
- Build Area: 125mm dia x 175mm tall
- Precision: ???
- Accuracy: ???
- Speed: Roughly comparable to Rostock
- Units of Measurement: Metric, even if it's built with SAE hardware...
- Rigid PVC pipe gantry
- E3D style hotend
- Simple gantry assembly with minimal tools, easily adujsted (prior to printing parts) for metric or SAE to suit local needs
- Will print in PLA or Nylon.
- 56% Plastic, 44% vitamins (Volume)
- Estimated assembly time = 2-3 hours (excludes electronic/board assembly)
- Estimated total print time of a printed set = 28+ hours (Current version of top end plate (biggest piece) is around 7 to 8 hours on a Mendel)
- Estimated total plastic usage of a printed set = 370 cc @ 40% infill
- Power requirement = Not measured yet, but similar to most other repraps with no heated bed.
- None yet. Working on it!
- Motor endplate is currently in v0.2, tweaks were needed to line up the fishing line pulley on the motor with the idler pulley between the guide rods.
- Chop endplates into sections to allow printing on Pipedream
- Add a heated bed to allow printing ABS
- Add LED lighting to illuminate print volume
- If proof-of-concept works to an acceptable standard, a local construction company has donated 12" I.D. PVC sewer pipe to the project for a larger printer.
- Kits and outreach to low-income people