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Installing Software

Since many of these applications are really just collections of scripts, I collected them in a common folder.

I installed the four things in this order because this website told me to do so.

After installing all of that, I took the skeinforge profiles and alterations from here and put them into the skeinforge directory, overwriting the preexisting files. I should have backed them up in case shit fucks up, but I didnt.

Communicating with the printer

After connecting USB from the printer, I checked what port it was attached to. Windows had to install a USB serial emulator, and after that was done it showed up as a COM port in the device manager.

I set the data rate 19200 in pronterface in accordance with the guideline set on the whiteboard, changed the XY speed to 3000 mm/min, the z speed to 60 mm/min and hit enter to confirm the change. In the options menu, I set the extrude rate (labelled as e_feedrate) to 2000.

Settings for repsnapper to print

David gave me a copy of repsnapper which I used to interface with the white printer. It can be found here.

In this version of repsnapper, prior to printing, the settings in the Printerdefinition tab of repsnapper were adjusted to numbers as seen here.

Made sure that the ";set temperature" line in the Gcode window of repsnapper said "M104 S200.0". I made sure this was consistent in other parts of repsnapper, like the print window.

Adjusted home of the z-axis in 1 and .1 mm increments so the tip was barely (.5 to .2mm) above the board.

Printing procedure

After the home values for the three axes were set and the board was appropriately covered in the blue scotch tape and the extruder had a supply of filament, I began printing.

In repsnapper, I opened the file and made sure that there were no overhangs, that there were all flat sides on the grid in the display. To rotate the file, 8 clicks on the "rotate ____" button is a full rotation, so two clicks will rotate it 90 degrees.

After rotating it properly, I translated it so that it was entirely on the print area as defined by the grid in the window of repsnapper.

To begin the printing process, the heat was switched on by clicking the button of the same name in the print tab. When the current heat was within 2 degrees of the target temp, "run extruder" was clicked multiple times in rapid successionfollowed by clicking "print" once, immediately after the clicking of "run extruder" A teammember was there with tweezers to pinch off the bits of PLA that accumulated on the tip.