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BAM&DICE - The Indiegogo campaign

Dear Reader,

The 2PrintBeta Team proudly presents our first crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo.

*** BAM&DICE - The new open standard for Arduino based 3D printers and more. ***

 

The flexible solution for all demanding users, which want something special.
Click on the following link to learn more: http://igg.me/at/bam-dice-2printbeta

We plan to create and produce a universal and flexible electronics, primarily intended for 3D printers, but also usable for many other devices.

BAMDICE-assembled

The BAM shield:

The BAM shield is a daughterboard for the popular Arduino Mega controller, which is used a lot in the Maker community. The BAM shield is fully compatible with the well-known RAMPS board, which is widely used for3Dprinters.The advantage of the BAM Shields are the connectors for the driver boards(DICE boards) based on the cost-effective and space-saving PCI-E hardware . These provide more contacts and thus the DICE can draw more power and cover many different functions. Due to the fact that the design is 100% compatible with the RAMPS for RepRap, all popular 3D-printer firmware can be used unchanged. 

The DICE modules:

For optimum arrangement the DICE modules are placed vertically. This enables extremely efficient cooling when an additional fan is mounted on them. For all the modules the mounting holes are provided at the same position so that a good fit is guaranteed with possible enclosures.

The first DICE, specialized for the 3D printers,will be the DICE-STK, a powerful module that is capable of 3 amps, and up to 128 times substepping.

DICE-STK-top

The DICE-STK contains the highly integrated stepper driver IC STK682-010-E which can support up to 3A RMS and 128 times substepping. The module also contains two trimmers for current setting and decay control. To attach different motors you don't need special connectors, because of the practical plug, integrated also on other DICE boards. It allows direct connection of solid and stranded wires from AWG18 to AWG24. For demanding applications additional cooling hardware can be mounted.

Specifications:

  • Logic voltage: 5V
  • Supply voltage: 9V - 35V
  • Current: 3A RMS (7A max.)
  • Size: 51 x 43 mm

We are planning many more DICE boards, for example the DICE-A4988 with the Allegro A4988 stepper driver, the DICE-L6470PD with a SPI based stepper driver, the DICE-955 with a 16 pin port extender, and also DICEs for thermocouples and valve control.

Licences:

The complete hardware will be published as open hardware after the campaign. All software and documentation will be available as free downloads.

Also we are planning to create Arduino libraries and examples for all produced DICEs, so it will be very easy to use those in your own projects. Due to the compatibility with the RAMPS board, there are many different 3D printer firmwares available, which you can use without modification. 

How you can help us:

Please help us fund this project. We offer many different perks on Indiegogo.com, from which you can choose the most suitable. Even small amounts are well invested and will strengthen our commitment. You will let us know, that you support us and there is a strong community behind our concept.

Even if you are not able to spend any money, you can help us by spreading the word.

Share it on social networks, by using the Indiegogo sharing tools and telling your friends about our project.

If you have questions, ideas or suggestions, do not hesitate to contact us.

 

The 2PrintBeta Team


 

 

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3D printing with new materials

At the EUROMOLD 2013 we got a few test pieces different materials in 3mm filament. Also we had some new biopolymer named Arboblend V2 sitting in our stash of test pieces. Now it was overdue to test this materials on our 3d printers. As our new full metal hotend was coping without problems with PLA and ABS, we wanted to test it with polycarbonate, some metal infused ABS and the Arboblend V2.

The first tests with Arboblend looked promising:

Image of a printed part with arboblend

The printing temperature was between 190°C and  210°C. It feels like a good mixture between ABS and PLA. And the finish looks a bit like nacre.

As this worked so nicely, we printed a more complex object, a tux:

Image of a tux printed in arboblend V2

The result was usable, but the optimal print settings still need to be determined. The individual layers stay soft for a long time, even with a fan blowing onto it. Which means overhangs, like the beak of the tux didn't look too good.

The next test was done with polycarbonate:

image of a tux printed in polycarbonate

Many 3D printers use polycarbonate plates as print beds. It is cheap and ABS and PLA stick to it very well without using any tape or other adhesives. So it was pretty surprising that the printed result looks so good and prints very nicely. It has very low shrinkage and is similar in the printing properties to PLA. Only the optimal printing temperature is a bit higher (230°C minimum).

Inspired by the nice results, we tried the metal infused ABS. Due to the metal infusion the material should be slightly conductive, or so we were told. The print was working without problems. We first had concerns that the metal parts might block the nozzle, but nothing happened.  It seems the metal particles didn't change the printing properties.

print test with metal infused ABS

To test it for conductivity, we printed a 5cm long piece with some depressions on either side to get good contact to the electrodes of the measurement device. After the print was finished, we unfortunately could not measure any conductivity. We measured at the printed depressions, directly on the printed part, on some extruded filament strings, but there wasn't any measureably conductivity. Our multimeter goes up to 200MOhms, but it still coudn't measure anything. 

Image of the measuring of the metal infused ABS.

The new full metal hotend coped with this materials without any problems. Even the material changes where very easy and without any problems. With this we now know that this hotend works very nicely, and only one hotend is needed for many different materials. Our new full metal hotend.

We are now working on the series production of this hotend and expect the first available hotends in our shop at the end of this month.

---

The 2PrintBeta Team

 

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