Category: 3D Printing

K40 LASER Chiller

I recently renovated an Iceman Clear3 Chiller I had recieved from someone who had a knee replacement.  The pump no longer worked but I kept this around for the hose quick disconnects and the nice bucket.  When I removed the two screws holding the pump in the nice trim plate on the back fell off.  So I whipped up these retainers in Fusion 360 and printed them out on my trusty old Makerbot Thing-O-Matic and about 10 minutes later I had it back together.  Works like a charm, looks nice, and as a bonus I can see the water flowing into the tank.  Just drop in a couple Blue Ice to keep things chill for the long jobs and replace them later.

Retainers installed with original hardware in the back of the chiller

You can download the STL for the retainers on Thingiverse:  Iceman Chiller Backplate Retainer

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Thing-O-Matic Repair and Upgrade

I recently upgraded my build surface from Kapton tape on Aluminium to BuildTak.  I was a little concerned about this because like everything else there are rumors that ABS won’t come off.  But I figured for the price for 3 sheets for my little Thing-O-Matic it was worth a shot so I didn’t have to deal with blue painters tape if I wanted to switch to PLA.  I found my BuildTak on Amazon for around $8.00 (3 sheets).  I peeled off my old Kapton tape and cleaned off the print bed.  I will say this is way easier to install than Kapton since it’s a small area and the tape forms nice bubbles under it when it adheres to the platform.  I used the edge of a credit card to ensure good adhesion to the platform.

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Water Can Replacement Lid

Photo Jul 19, 12 20 50 PM

I recently lost one of the caps for my nearly new water jug.  A quick search showed me I could order a replacement cap (and spout) for $10!  I would never pay that kind of money for a few cents worth of plastic.  Instead of throwing away this really nice jugs I decided to design a replacement cap in Fusion 360 instead using the cap from my second can as a reference.  The water can in question is  this one which we purchased from Amazon:

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Makerbot Thing-O-Matic Cura Profile

I lieu of the nearly constant inexpliciple crashes I have been encountering with Slic3r I decided to try and get Cura working with my now (Ancient) Makerbot Thing-O-Matic running Sailfish. It wasn’t really terribly hard to get into Cura after the legwork with Slic3r was done. I just needed to slightly correct the Gcode coming out of cure before it was fed into the GPX post-processor to generate X3G for the printer.

My basic slicing profile can be found here: Cura Thing-O-Matic Profile

In addition to this profile I made a slight tweak to the previous post-processor script I had written for Slic3r. This removes the CURA_PROFILE_STRING from the end of the code since it causes a buffer overflow in gpx. In addition it maps over the bed temperature and tool temperature settings over to compatible settings for my Thing-O-Matic. Note: This is for running Cura/GPX on a Mac.

#!/bin/bash -f

pp_path=`dirname "$0"`
export pp_path

egrep -v "M127|M126|;CURA_PROFILE_STRING" "$1" | sed 's/M109 S/M104 T0 S/g' | sed 's/M190 /M109 /g' > "$1.tmp"
# rm $1
mv "$1" "$1.orig"
mv "$1.tmp" "$1"

"$pp_path/gpx" "$1"

exit 0

It’s amazing this thing is still running strong after 5 years of abuse.

Danby Kegerator two draught faucet upgrade

Draught Tower Upgrade

I have a Danby DKC14SLDB 5.2 cubic Foot Single Draught Kegerator  I purchased several years ago.  Several times a year I find myself with two pony kegs of homebrew I want on tap.  Only having a single draught faucet was really cramping my style.  I decided instead of purchasing a whole new tower with two faucets ($90)  or an adapter ($70), which would have required the additional faucet anyhow, I would make it work on the cheap.  I set out by purchasing the following  items form (note I have been home brewing for a long time and as such I have some old Coca-Cola pin-lock kegs that I normally use – please purchase whatever keg coupling is appropriate for your application): Read more

Slic3r Success

Everything is dialed in now in Slicer for my good old MakerBot Thing-O-Matic.  I recently started printing with PLA instead of ABS and I can honestly say I am getting used to it.  ABS certainly has it’s place but PLA does print really nice too once it’s dialed in.  I made this fantastic Valentines Keychain for my family members.  This was printed called to 75% of the original size from the original Thing posted on Thingiverse.  This cool print in place one piece design with moving centerpiece is well done.  You can download it here:  Valentine’s Day keychain


Photo Feb 14, 9 31 44 AM

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Makerbot Thing-O-Matic Silc3r configuration

I searched around for a while but couldn’t find any definitive (and working) MakerBot Thing-O-Matic configurations for my machine with Sailfish Firmware.  I decided to go about digging through and setting up my own.  My initial reason for doing this was I was having a retraction issue using MakerBot Desktop that, due to it’s non user friendly configuration I just couldn’t get ironed out.  I did not have this problem until I updated to MakerBot Desktop 3.5 earlier this week.  Prior to that I never had an issue.

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Thing-O-Matic PLA & Nylon Printing Notes

PLA Setup:

Must adjust the Z Homing offset for PLA to account for the additional Blue Painters Tape affixed to the build platform.

Platform must be more level since the “noodle” hardens almost instantly.  Perhaps a little pre-heating would help it stick/smush better

Nozzle must be clean.  I preheated to the tool head and cleaned it off with some 000 steel wool.  This prevents the PLA from curling in and sticking to the nozzle.

Need a good purge/anchor when starting the print PLA oozes much more than ABS

Taulman 618 Nylon Setup:

Adjust Z Homing offset same as for PLA (Load PLA profile with blue painters tape affixed to the build platform.

Print with ABS setting and adjust bed temp to 65 and Extruder temp to 245

Make sure  filaments dry – otherwise finish will be sub-par – damp filament is indicated by popping and steam during extrusion

A material datasheet can be found here: Nylon 618 Specification

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