Build your own 3D Printer STE”A”M kit WM UTC Employer Project
View Students pitch to the WM UTC principal Avtar and employers:
WMC UTC Simon Maxfield, VP and Imran, Director of student services thrilled to introduce the ‘’build your own 3D Printer STEAM kit’’ to the students as part of their ‘’Innovate’’ Employer Project. A number of students from the Smart Product Design Course were selected, keeping it relevant and focused. They were provided with a brief from Revathi, Director of Avatar 3D.
Reuben, Ravinder and Yasir share their experience :
“Our brief was to assemble a 3D printer and to provide a ‘step by step’ guide, manual for others to follow.
Our first exercise involved costing engineering of the mechanical/electrical components. We were supplied with a list of parts and details of suppliers.
The three of us worked as a team to research into the cost and function of each part. We were not able to find many of the parts cheaper but we were able to find a cheaper supplier for the aluminium frame which makes up the X, Y & Z axis of the printer.
We were then given the parts for the assembly of the printer with a supporting video animation of the assembly.
We started the build of the ‘’y’’ axis which was the base of the printer and realised that at first we were not doing this correctly as we needed to pay more attention to how many nut holders were going into the aluminium frame. We found it hard to follow the animated video, we flagged this up to Revathi and started to make notes to make improvements which was included in the ‘step by step’ assembly manual. Yasir took the responsibility of putting together this manual which lists the
menu of components and diagrams on how the printer is assembled.
Whilst most of the 3D printed parts were of high quality, we highlighted to Revathi that nut holders 3D printed were too small, so we found it quite hard to insert the nuts in to the holder. The solution was to simply purchase the M4 nut holders from the same supplier KJN who provided the frames for the printer.
Both Ruben and Ravinder completed the assembly of the ‘’x, y and z axis’’ of the printer whilst Yasir completed the manual from the feedback we gave him.
Revathi was very impressed with the fact that we had constructed the printer and the design of the instructional manual without her supervision.
Our next task is to assemble the bed and complete the wiring which we are waiting parts for from the supplier. We will then be videoing the whole assembly process. We hope to make the video manual simple for other engineering students, hobbyist to follow and enjoy the build of a 3D Printer.
Revathi will then support us further to operate the printer to not only print in thermoplastic materials but chocolate.
We would like to thank Revathi for this work experience opportunity, it has taught us a lot about both 3d printing process and being an entrepreneur in the creation and lunch of a new product. We look forward every week to supporting her with her project and pitch to our principal Avatar.”
Look out for next blog on the completion and experimentation with different materials using the STEAM kit.
Visit the shop to see the demo video of the 3D printer STEAM kit here.