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mBot as my first?
#1
I've been hanging out at 3D printer meetups at my local hacker space. Several people there have suggested the Flashforge Creator or one of it's knock-offs as the perfect first 3D printer. I am a tinker at heart. The idea of buying something that is completely ready to use seems like it would take half the fun out of this. This mBot kit seems to be about the same thing with a bigger build volume, for more than $400 less.
http://www.3ders.org/pricecompare/3dprin...spx?ID=291
If I am confident I can build it and make it work, are there any down sides to getting the mBot.

I have also noticed just tonight that there is an eBay auction for a printer that looks just like the mBot. It could be an mBot reseller. The only reason I'm even thinking about it is that the eBay seller estimates 2 week delivery, and offers a 2 Year warranty.

Any opinions?

Terry
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#2
I would ask myself, Is it open or closed source. Does it have the same features that the others have?
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#3
(03-11-2014, 06:55 AM)art3d Wrote: I would ask myself, Is it open or closed source. Does it have the same features that the others have?
The feature list seems similar. The mBot doesn't have a heated bed. Can that be added without too much difficulty?

I'm not even sure how I tell if the printer is open source. If I'm not planning to build more printers on the same design why is it important to me? mBot is I think replicator clone. It is in the price compare list so I assumed it was legal.
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#4
(03-11-2014, 08:19 AM)Droidling Wrote:
(03-11-2014, 06:55 AM)art3d Wrote: I would ask myself, Is it open or closed source. Does it have the same features that the others have?
The feature list seems similar. The mBot doesn't have a heated bed. Can that be added without too much difficulty?
You could add one but you would need to get a bigger power supply AND you would have to independently control it due to the mbot being closed source.

I'm not even sure how I tell if the printer is open source. If I'm not planning to build more printers on the same design why is it important to me? mBot is I think replicator clone. It is in the price compare list so I assumed it was legal.
I think it was based on a makerbot but then they changed it to closed source. Open source machines allow to to get into the firmware and turn things on or off like the heatbed and choose what thermistor controls the heatbeds temp.. CTC, Wanhoa and a few others still have open systems and they cost about the same. The only thing is they are not 200mm cubed max model size.
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#5
Shocked 
(03-11-2014, 10:22 AM)art3d Wrote: I think it was based on a makerbot but then they changed it to closed source. Open source machines allow to to get into the firmware and turn things on or off like the heatbed and choose what thermistor controls the heatbeds temp.. CTC, Wanhoa and a few others still have open systems and they cost about the same. The only thing is they are not 200mm cubed max model size. [/color]
The CTC was another possible, I'll have to take a look at Wanhoa, when I get home.

It sounds like when you say "open source" the main point is that the firmware is open. I thought you were talking about the hardware design. Now that I know what I'm looking for I may have better luck. So much to learn.

As to build volume The CTC is big enough. The mBots' extra size was just a bonus. The main things I am looking for are:

*Dual extruder
*.125 mm/.005 in. min. layer thickness and positioning accuracy
*~8" x 6" x 6" build volume or larger
*Heated build plate
*Open source firmware (Per your suggestion)

I'd also really like it to be a kit, so I can be sure I understand just how it works. As with most things, faster is better, and bigger is better (within reason). My budget will max out about $1200 US. Although the $750 price was a big motivation to get off the fence and order something now.

Terry
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#6
The only thing about those printers is they come fully assembled. They are awesome printers and work most of the time straight out of the box.
Yes, that's what i meant by open source. If you want to one day change the extruder for a new one that might print chocolate or just has a different motor on it, you will want to change the settings in the firmware to make it work.
Something that's important to me is the freedom to use different programs to operate the machine.
If a kit is something you must have, Reprap Mendel and Prusa and Ultimaker are all awesome giants that should be considered imo.

Jason
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#7
(03-12-2014, 09:32 AM)art3d Wrote: The only thing about those printers is they come fully assembled. They are awesome printers and work most of the time straight out of the box.

I guess I'll order a CTC off ebay. I can always use it to print the parts for a reprap and build one of those to learn about them.

Thanks for your advice.

Terry
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#8
Your welcome Terry. You should like the CTC.
Do you know what you are going to print first?
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#9
Not really. The plot clock looked fun.

I need a replacement Nylon gear for my band saw. I modeled it, using the best measurements I could take. I've never designed anything with helical gears before, so I'm not to sure about the fit. Once I know the printer is working properly I'd like to make test prints to refine the model before having the actual gear made.
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#10
Cool. I hope it works first go. If you have any problems there are a few gear generators around on the web.
I think you could download a trial of KeyCreator to use the gear generator on that.
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