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Make Your Own 3D Printer for Under $60 Using Recycled Electronic Components with Instructables Design


One of the major selling points of this design for a 3D printer is that not only do you end up with a usable machine at the end of the process, but that the process of building and programming the thing yourself also provides you with a solid tech-ed mini-course (or maxi-course for the completely uninitiated). What you need to get started are two standard CD/DVD drives from a used PC, a floppy disc drive from which you extract stepper rather than DC motors (you’ll need three stepper motors in all), a PC power supply, cables, female connectors, a heat-shrink tube, and some CNC electronics. There are some components — like a NEMA 17 stepper motor — that you’ll need to purchase new, but for the most part you’ll be going with used and recycled parts.

Go here for the Instructables for this 3D printer –



20 Best Cheap DIY 3D Printer Kits in Spring 2018

Feb 17, 2018


How long will it take to build your own 3D printer? Typical assembly times vary from kit to kit. Much also depends on the quality of the instructions provided. Usually these are available online, and you can freely review them before you make a purchase.


The article below is a step by step instruction specific to building this 3D printer kit – very cool. Took that author about 4 and a half hours to build it. (my note)

Build a Cheap DIY 3D Printer Kit for $99: The iMakr STARTT

Jul 18, 2017

A DIY 3D printer kit for beginners, the STARTT stands apart for good reason: it costs just $99. Read on for our guide on how to build this cheap DIY 3D printer kit.

A word of caution though. Even with a set of clear instructions and the parts for a no-frills machine strewn before you, building a 3D printer from scratch is a pretty involved process, and the end results may frustrate you. Start with an open mind and the expectation that something will be wrong by the time you’re setting up your first print.



This article has specifics to make any of these DIY and Build a Kit 3D printers work as you would want them to do. It covers the things that need to be beefed up or considered and explains why for each thing. Amazing! (my note)




The answer is simple: DIY 3D printers done right are rugged workhorses. They work every single time, they never break, and even if: they are an inexhaustible source of spare parts for themselves. They have exactly the quality and functionality you build them to have. No clutter and nothing’s missing. However, the term DIY 3D printer, in its current commonly accepted use, actually means: the first and the last 3D printer someone ever built, which often ends in the amazing disappointment machine.

This post is dedicated to unlocking the full potential in all of these builds, and to turning almost any combination of threaded rods and plywood into a workshop-grade piece of equipment.




OpenSCAD is a free software application for creating solid 3D CAD (computer-aided design) objects. It is a script-only based modeller that uses its own description language; parts can be previewed, but it cannot be interactively selected or modified by mouse in the 3D view. An OpenSCAD script specifies geometric primitives (such as spheres, boxes, cylinders, etc.) and defines how they are modified and combined (for instance by intersection, difference, envelope combination and Minkowski sums) to render a 3D model. As such, the program does constructive solid geometry (CSG). OpenSCAD is available for WindowsLinux and OS X.



The Programmers Solid 3D CAD Modeller


OpenSCAD is software for creating solid 3D CAD objects.

It is free software and available for Linux/UNIX, MS Windows and Mac OS X.


Blender (software)


Blender is a professional, free and open-source 3D computer graphics software toolset used for creating animated filmsvisual effects, art, 3D printed models, interactive 3D applications and video games. Blender’s features include 3D modelingUV unwrappingtexturingraster graphics editingrigging and skinningfluid and smoke simulationparticle simulation, soft body simulation, sculptinganimatingmatch movingcamera trackingrendering, motion graphics, video editing and compositing. It also features an integrated game engine.



Blender is the free and open source 3D creation suite. It supports the entirety of the 3D pipeline—modeling, rigging, animation, simulation, rendering, compositing and motion tracking, even video editing and game creation.

Blender is a public project, made by hundreds of people from around the world; by studios and individual artists, professionals and hobbyists, scientists, students, VFX experts, animators, game artists, modders, and the list goes on.



To license for 3D modeling and 3D printing uses –



SolidWorks is a solid modeling computer-aided design (CAD) and computer-aided engineering (CAE) computer program that runs on Microsoft Windows. SolidWorks is published by Dassault Systèmes.

According to the publisher, over two million engineers and designers at more than 165,000 companies were using SolidWorks as of 2013.[2] Also according to the company, fiscal year 2011–12 revenue for SolidWorks totalled $483 million.[3]

also this explainer for how it creates 3D forms –

SolidWorks is a solid modeler, and utilizes a parametric feature-based approach which was initially developed by PTC (Creo/Pro-Engineer) to create models and assemblies. The software is written on Parasolid-kernel.

Parameters refer to constraints whose values determine the shape or geometry of the model or assembly. Parameters can be either numeric parameters, such as line lengths or circle diameters, or geometric parameters, such as tangent, parallel, concentric, horizontal or vertical, etc. Numeric parameters can be associated with each other through the use of relations, which allows them to capture design intent.

Design intent is how the creator of the part wants it to respond to changes and updates. For example, you would want the hole at the top of a beverage can to stay at the top surface, regardless of the height or size of the can. SolidWorks allows the user to specify that the hole is a feature on the top surface, and will then honor their design intent no matter what height they later assign to the can.

Features refer to the building blocks of the part. They are the shapes and operations that construct the part. Shape-based features typically begin with a 2D or 3D sketch of shapes such as bosses, holes, slots, etc. This shape is then extruded or cut to add or remove material from the part. Operation-based features are not sketch-based, and include features such as fillets, chamfers, shells, applying draft to the faces of a part, etc.

Building a model in SolidWorks usually starts with a 2D sketch (although 3D sketches are available for power users). The sketch consists of geometry such as points, lines, arcs, conics (except the hyperbola), and splines. Dimensions are added to the sketch to define the size and location of the geometry. Relations are used to define attributes such as tangency, parallelism, perpendicularity, and concentricity. The parametric nature of SolidWorks means that the dimensions and relations drive the geometry, not the other way around. The dimensions in the sketch can be controlled independently, or by relationships to other parameters inside or outside of the sketch.

In an assembly, the analog to sketch relations are mates. Just as sketch relations define conditions such as tangency, parallelism, and concentricity with respect to sketch geometry, assembly mates define equivalent relations with respect to the individual parts or components, allowing the easy construction of assemblies. SolidWorks also includes additional advanced mating features such as gear and cam follower mates, which allow modeled gear assemblies to accurately reproduce the rotational movement of an actual gear train.

Finally, drawings can be created either from parts or assemblies. Views are automatically generated from the solid model, and notes, dimensions and tolerances can then be easily added to the drawing as needed. The drawing module includes most paper sizes and standards (ANSIISODINGOSTJISBSI and SAC).





With a multiple extruders you can print in multiple colors or materials simultaneously by assigning each extruder specific color or material. Some printers can be upgraded from single to multiple extruders, some can’t. The biggest benefit of multiple extruders is when you print you can set your support structures with a different material that can be dissolved in water or some other type of solvent, depending on the materials used!


Anatomy of a 3D Printer: How Does a 3D Printer Work?

Feb. 4, 2016


Between the names of the parts and their functions, it can be hard to keep it all straight. Here is a quick guide of the anatomy of a 3D printer. We will focus on mechanical and electrical components of the most common desktop 3D printer type: fused filament fabrication (FFF) or fused deposition modeling (FDM).


A place online to buy parts for 3D printers or to build your own from parts –

3D Printer Components


3D printing is different to any other hobby, half the fun is experimenting with different set-ups and to alter the way things work. Our 3D printer components give those who can’t leave things alone the opportunity to tinker and fine tune a big range of 3D printers. You could even build a DIY printer if you are up to the challenge, it’s actually not as hard as it would seem.

We offer components to suit most hobby type printers that use protocols such as Rep-Rap and Marlin, and the range is constantly growing.


How to build your own 3D printer

June 20, 2016


Before starting the build we’ll look at the key components. These are parts that you can upgrade during the build, or in the future, to improve print quality or reliability, so it’s worth knowing a little more about them and the different options as quite often they are interlinked. A fact that some of the cheaper kits on the market fail to take into account.

Also –

Full details can be found here for the PRUSA i3. Once done you then need to download and install Pronterface. Once installed this software can be used to connect and commission the printer before the first print. Finally, once commissioned you’ll need some slicing software to convert a 3D model into layers ready to print.

The most popular is Slicer, which lets you load a 3D file in STL format, select your printer and print.




3D Slicer is a free open source software (BSD-style license) that is a flexible, modular platform for image analysis and visualization. 3D Slicer are extended to enable development of both interactive and batch processing tools for a variety of applications.[4]

3D Slicer provides image registration, processing of DTI (diffusion tractography), an interface to external devices for image guidance support, and GPU-enabled volume rendering, among other capabilities. 3D Slicer has a modular organization that allows the addition of new functionality and provides a number of generic features not available in competing tools.

The interactive visualization capabilities of 3D Slicer include the ability to display arbitrarily oriented image slices, build surface models from image labels, and hardware accelerated volume rendering. 3D Slicer also supports a rich set of annotation features (fiducials and measurement widgets, customized colormaps)

And –

Slicer’s capabilities include:[5]

Slicer is compiled for use on multiple computing platforms, including WindowsLinux, and Mac OS X.

Slicer is distributed under a BSD style, free, open source license. The license has no restrictions on use of the software in academic or commercial projects. However, no claims are made on the software being useful for any particular task. It is entirely the responsibility of the user to ensure compliance with local rules and regulations.The slicer has not been formally approved for clinical use by the FDA in the US or by any other regulatory body elsewhere.




3D Slicer is an open source software platform for medical image informatics, image processing, and three-dimensional visualization. Built over two decades through support from the National Institutes of Health and a worldwide developer community, Slicer brings free, powerful cross-platform processing tools to physicians, researchers, and the general public.


G-code generator for 3D printers

Slic3r is the tool you need to convert a 3D model into printing instructions for your 3D printer. It cuts the model into horizontal slices (layers), generates toolpaths to fill them and calculates the amount of material to be extruded.

Slic3r, being a true non-profit community project, allowed the people to experiment with several original new features that have become common thereafter such as multiple extrudersbrimmicrolayeringbridge detectioncommand line slicingvariable layer heightssequential printing (one object at time), honeycomb infillmesh cuttingobject splitting into partsAMF support, avoid crossing perimeters, distinct extrusion widths, modifiers, and much more. All of these features were first introduced in Slic3r and are now part of the commercial software out there.


Found one more I wanted to add here – it has a lot of very handy info too –

Best DIY 3D Printer Kits


It’s a big misconception that it is expensive to start with 3D printing. When you have a tight budget, cheap DIY 3D printer kits can be a great starting point. Why DIY kits still exist mainly has to do with saving costs, because the components can be packed and shipped more efficiently.

Below we’ll first describe what to look for when buying your first kit and at the bottom of this page you’ll find a list of the best cheap 3D printer kits.

NOTE – make sure and check the great chart and list at the bottom of the post about the best 3D printer kits with their costs and how long it takes to construct them – they start at $150 and go up, with build time from 4 – 8 hours, although one of them takes 16 hours to build and is high end on price too. It is probably wonderful. Great article!