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Reviews of sorts

In my job as a guy who does stuff, I tend to see a few things come across my desk and I might as well keep my impressions of them in one place. This will be that place.

Printrbot Play

Printrbot store link
Ah, 3d printers.. the greatest of inventions. Heralding in a golden age of instant home replication of anything your heart desires*.
*anything your heart desires offer only available after you personally create that thing after learning to use a decent CAD package, then spend hours if not days fiddling with the settings of your printer to get them 100% perfect for that one time print, which throws it out of alignment again.

But seriously, I love these finicky, argumentative, beasts called 3d printers.

So back to the printrbot play. Let me get straight to it. If you want to read after this, that’s your problem. This list will probably change over time as i’m about an hour into calibrating and fiddling stage.

made of metal (not wood) so sturdy
overall mechanism fairly simple, I could see myself wanting to repair this

Drooling problem – it seems each calibration test requires that I wait for this to finish
head doesn’t travel to “Z home” when a print is cancelled (I’m sure I can fix that somewhere)
instructions are a bit.. longish (hey man, I’m just saying)

Really though this guy comes with the usual quirks you get with a 3d printer so far.. calibrate, fiddle, print, repeat.
I really like the story of the printrbot company and actually bought and assembled one of the “og” wooden printrbot simpl’s. I’ve also horsed around with a couple of makerbot’s offerings. That’s basically my experience there.

update: 3 hours in and still “calibrating” seems I just can’t get adhesion and will probably be looking for some way to clear the “drool” before I am printing anything. 3 hours isn’t terrible at this stage in the printing game though.

edit: Just can’t get adhesion, seems the nozzle is hanging out just slightly high enough to not allow the plastic to mash properly against the bed. Must be a calibration thing, but can’t seem to make M212 do anything different..

edit: So after much futsing with software, I decided to move onto hardware for my calibration. and there-in lies the fix.

wp-1457461685348.jpg This little guy right here
So that is the “z probe” which also seems to act as a “z stop”. ┬áPrintrbot provides a handy sheet of plastic for calibrating this little guy, but it seems like the actual position that worked (for me) was to discard it completely and make small adjustments, then try pressing “home” in the cura software until it seemed right. On the plus side it’s threaded, so I could turn it to make the finer side of the adjustments and just tighten down when I got there. I’m assuming that this will be the first thing to go out of alignment, meaning that this is where I’ll start for any future tuning.

wp-1457461653070.jpgSweet success!