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This project is a delta 3D printer design inspired by the Tevo Little Monster (TLM) and the Anycubic Predator (AP). This page is not affiliated with either company.
Both sources of inspiration are larger delta printers that cannot be purchased in the US as of December 2020 - April 2021. I tried to purchase a Homers Hector/Little Monster in December 2020, but no luck. After several months and zero email responses, I requested a refund. But I still wanted to upgrade from my Prusa i3 MK3S to a larger, faster, enclosed printer. That's what led to this project.
If my TLM purchase had been successful, I would have made several changes and upgrades. Lots of reviewers don't love the TLM out of the box, but many are very happy after making some modifications. This project is definitely more effort and more expensive than my original modified TLM/AP plan. But it gives me an opportunity to cut fewer corners, learn more, and use more top-shelf components.
Monster Evolution Delta 3D Printer by Gregory Alan Hildstrom is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0
For rigidity and flatness, I'm using thick plate for the top and bottom frame plates. The as-delivered c-beams likely have a chopsaw or bandsaw cut edge. If that doesn't provide sufficient squareness, the ends will need to be milled or ground as square as possible.
Why not core-xy? First, I think deltas look cool AF. Second, my Prusa is cartesian and I want to try a delta to expand my horizons. Third, to extend a middle finger to Tevo, Homers, and Anycubic for making desirable flawed products and then not continuing to produce them or an improved variant.
|Duet3D Duet 3 Mainboard 6HC||Filastruder||1||received|
|Duet3D PanelDue 7i||Filastruder||1||received|
|Duet3D Delta Smart Effector||Filastruder||1||received|
|Magnetic Delta Arms 400mm||Filastruder||6||received|
|Duet3D Laser Filament Monitor||Filastruder||1||received|
|E3D V6 Ultimate Edition Hot End||Filastruder||1||received|
|Panasonic Solid State Relay||Filastruder||1||received|
|Generic 4020 Ball Bearing Blower Fan 24V||Filastruder||1||out of stock|
|Keenovo Round Silicone Bed Heater 300mm 500W 120V||Keenovo||1||ordered|
|Custom Frame Plates (0.5"x32.0"x22.0" for 2)||Online Metals, waterjet service||2||received|
|Custom Bed Plate (0.375"x18.25"x18.25")||Online Metals, special/discount buy||1||received/made|
|BuildTak FlexPlate System, cut to fit||MatterHackers||1||received|
|Zesty Nimble V3 Flex extruder 120cm||Zesty Technology||1||ordered|
|OpenBuilds C-Beam Linear Rail 1000mm||OpenBuilds Part Store||3||received|
|OpenBuilds C-Beam Gantry Kit||OpenBuilds Part Store||3||received|
|OpenBuilds NEMA 17 Stepper Motor||OpenBuilds Part Store||4||received|
|OpenBuilds GT2-2M Timing Pulley 20 Tooth||OpenBuilds Part Store||3||received|
|OpenBuilds Smooth Idler Pulley Kit||OpenBuilds Part Store||3||received|
|OpenBuilds GT2-2M Timing Belt By the Foot||OpenBuilds Part Store||24||received|
|OpenBuilds 24V Meanwell Power Supply||OpenBuilds Part Store||1||received|
|OpenBuilds V-Slot 40x40 Linear Rail 500mm||OpenBuilds Part Store||3||received|
|OpenBuilds V-Slot 20x40 Linear Rail 250mm||OpenBuilds Part Store||3||received|
|OpenBuilds V-Slot 20x40 Linear Rail 500mm||OpenBuilds Part Store||3||received|
|Stainless Steel Standoffs||supplier||6||planning|
The hexagonal plates on the TLM look cool, but they make it more difficult to enclose. I reviewed some of the open source TLM models (jeowin, CC BY 3.0) for inspiration, but I'm not using or modifying any of those files. I decided to use a similar C-Beam spacing, but with a more triangular shape that is easier to enclose. The tradeoff of this design decision is slightly smaller build plate diameter. Without an enclosure, build diameter is reduced from 340mm to 320mm, unless you're willing to have the build plate extend beyond the bottom frame plate. With a 3-panel enclosure, build diameter is reduced further to prevent contact between the effector and the side panels. But you could certainly make the enclosure larger if you want to maximize enclosed build area. I decided to use the same design for both the bottom frame plate and the top frame plate for simplicity. I designed the plate in OpenSCAD, but I also like to model parts in Blender. The larger holes are 5mm for M5 through holes. The smaller holes are 4mm that can be drilled and tapped for M5 threads.
I got the frame plates waterjet cut out of 0.5" (12.7mm) 6061-T6 aluminum. The quoted material size is 32.0"x22.0" for both pieces. An alternative to that approach is to print the layout full scale, glue it to the uncut plate, then manually cut, center punch, and drill. That being said, the waterjet service was worth every penny. With some much-appreciated help from Al, we countersunk holes for socket cap screws using a mill/drill press.
If I would have planned a little better, I would have ordered the bed plate waterjet cut at the same time as the frame plates. But I'm doing things a bit spread out and I changed a couple design decisions along the way. I ordered an oversize 0.375" (9.525mm) 6061-T6 aluminum plate that I'll layout, cut, and drill manually. I lucked out when searching for this material. I found an oversize 18.25"x18.25" special buy at a deep discount, which was an odd size off cut or leftover. I printed a full-size template and glued to the plate. With some much-appreciated help from Al, we drilled the holes with a mill/drill press and we cut the outline with a circular saw and a jigsaw. Since the cut plate wasn't a cast/milled plate, I did a couple 500F normalizing cycles in the oven.
The bed plate will mount on standoffs to threaded holes in the bottom frame plate. That same threaded hole location is used for part of the stepper motor mounts in the top frame plate.
You can print these parts or have them printed for you. I still have my first 3D printer, so I'm printing them myself. There are definitely other ways to make these parts, but I'm using the tools available to me.