3D Printer Experience - Retail Store Opens in Chicago

On Monday April 22nd Julie Loufton Friedman Steele will opening the first experiential retail 3D printing store in the world....we'll we think the world but for sure the Midwest and definitely in Chicago.  It is definitely the only retail location in the world with an EOS P110 nylon laser sintering.  The goal of the store is to introduce the general public to the magic of 3D printing and the potential for distributed digital manufacturing.

A view of the design stations and Up Mini's (courtesy Urban Daddy)

The Design Bar (photo courtesy Urban Daddy)

At the design bar you can sit down and design and print a pendant using their Pendant Maker App.  The app allows anyone regardless of ability to doodle a line and the app takes the doodle as an input and makes it into a pretty cool looking pendant.  You can then use the sliders to adjust the size and shape of the different design elements.  When you're happy with your design you can print it out.  Pendants take between 20-50 minutes to print out.

Pendant Maker App
Pendant Maker App

 If pendants aren't your thing they also have a 3D scanning station where they can scan you and print you out!  

I'm getting  a fully body scan

Selection of 3D printer filament available from Inventables (photo courtesy Urban Daddy)

Inventables has teamed up with the 3D printer experience to provide 3D printers for sale and different colors of filament customers can buy to take home or print out their pendants in the store. The store also has a gallery of products that have been made using 3D printing technology.  The product below is a violin being held by Mike Moceri of the 3D printer experience.

Printed Dual Drive Kit

A few weeks ago a good friend of mine brought his Shapeoko over to my house.  He was in the process of assembling of getting it wired up with a Rambo (reprap electronics).  In the process, I noticed that the Y-axis was driven only on a single side and suggested we should change it.  Stacey mentioned a kit was available, but we decided we would try to hack one out.  The result came out nicely as you can see.  I’ll walk you through the process of what we did.

A lot of the pieces were already on hand.  We needed the following:

2x M5x35 SCHS
2x M5 nut
4x M5 washers
2x spacers
2x idlers
2x 605zz bearings
Other Components
1x gt2 belt
1x gt2 18 tooth pulley
1x nema17 motor
4x m3x10
2x brackets for the belt clamps.

As we looked through what was needed, we had many of the necessary parts from reprap projects. The key pieces we didn’t have were the idler and the spacer.  

Rather than try to create the idler from scratch, I went to thingiverse to see what might be available.  After going through a few entries, I found this one: (http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:5620) .  It was very close to what I needed, but of course the parameters would need to be adjusted.

After doing a bit of measuring and adjusting, I got to the following settings:
idlerID = 14.1;
idlerOD = 17.53;
beltwidth= 6;

The STL and the resulting print.

Next we needed to press fit the 605 bearing into it.  I used a regular vice in a similar fashion to press fitting into metal.  The result compared to the idler on the other side

The idler came out a little bit longer because of the flange in the model, but still good enough to work.  Next I conjured up a spacer model that we could print to get the belt path alignment right.  For all of these parts I used 50% infill for strength. 

The motor just needed the 4 m3x10 shcs.  To make the two sides consistent, we swapped the belt and pulley on the other side as well.  This meant 20 tooth gt2 rather than the 18 tooth mxl pulley/belt combo. The gt2 belt dropped right in the other side with no issues.

There wasn’t much else to it.  After mounting up the belts, we were able to do a number of dry runs and they all worked well.