ProtoRap

A 3D Printer by Protowrxs

Started January 2017

So I've been a little interested in 3D printers after Mr Wallace Came out of the closet and was looking through parts and checking out the old SmartRap printer I started on in 2014. The SmartRap was kind of cool but seemed rather flimsy in overall design with thing printed parts holding the steppers together and no real solid support on the Z bars in my opinion.

I really liked the solid bar mounts on the Wallace 8mm design and with the stepper motor mounts on both sides it hit me that one could "stack" these next to each other and have three steppers to drive things. There is seriously nothing new here besides the X carriage mount and end and even it is a modifyed Wallace setup. By stacking three wallace ends / motor mount blocks next to each other you can get Y axis, Z Drive and extruder (assuming direct drive) all in line across the base of the printer. This puts all the weight down low and in a small circle of a foot print. Depending on how much X axis you want to drive the cantilever length isn't too bad and it's easy to extend the Y axis using the Wallace blocks.

One thing about the SmartRap that I didn't like was the Z drive. I did find someone had modified the X carriage to use a lead screw instead of the small threaded rod and capture nuts but driving it that far off the side just bugged me. That is why this drives directly between the Z rods instead of offset and it also helped that the steppers mounted in between them as well.