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This is the second-to-last installment of my ongoing series on building the MakerGear Mosaic 3D printer. This part covers assembly of the heated build platform, including installation and adjustment of the leveling plate, mounting the heating element and build surface, and making the associated electrical connections. Next week, I’ll be wrapping up the build by installing the electronics. And then, hopefully not too long thereafter, I’ll be printing a shot glass and celebrating my first 3D printer in the traditional fashion!

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Sean Michael Ragan

I am descended from 5,000 generations of tool-using primates. Also, I went to college and stuff. I write for MAKE, serve as Technical Editor for MAKE magazine, and develop original DIY content for Make: Projects.


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  1. MiiCraft MiiCraft says:

    We are actually studying to develop an affordable Stereolithography 3D printer right now.  You can see some of our 3D models samples from the links below.
    http://www.miicraft.com

    1. Thanks!  The “pico” projector based desktop stereolithography is really exciting to me.  I’ve covered it a couple times, before.  Here’s the post that stands out in my mind:

      http://blog.makezine.com/archive/2010/10/homemade-high-resolution-dlp-3d-pri.html 

      I was not aware of your project.  Thanks for bringing it to my attention.  

      There’s no doubt the improved resolution of the stereolithography process is exciting.  My understanding, per a shall-remain-nameless source at MakerBot, is that this technology is currently encumbered, at least in the US, by one or more patents that are standing in the way of hobby-scale commercialization.   That’s just hearsay–I don’t know the specific patents in question and it could well just be a myth, which wouldn’t surprise me too much, since the original stereolithography patents are long since expired.    

      Whether there is encumbering IP or not, I imagine the mess and safety concerns–realistic or otherwise–about handling the liquid photopolymerizable resins will remain a barrier to hobby scale commercialization of the SLA technology.   Not necessarily an insurmountable one, though, since in terms of its mechanical simplicity and improved resolution your method has a heckuva lot to recommend it over FDM/FFF.
       
      I will keep an eye on your project, and please feel free to e-mail me directly at sean@makezine.com when you have news.   

  2. Anonymous says:

    Wow- Good thing I didn’t see this in the [MAKE Magazine - daily] I might have bought me one of these…
    http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/printrbot/printrbot-your-first-3d-printer

    The size and resolution look great; maybe the Maker Shed will carry it some day!

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