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Tuesday 17 April 2018

3D Plotter from 3 old DVD

At work was just grabbing something when saw some old PC's with old DVD in them and thought might be fun to make up one of these plotters so asked if I might have them...

I have a spare Arduino MEGA and a 3D CNC Shield and A4988 controllers.

Hardware :-
1) Arduino Mega -

2) CNC Shield (loads on ebay)

3) A4988 Stepper drive (one for each axis) (loads on ebay usually come with the shield)

4) 3 DVD drive stepper axis (donor from old ones, it doesn't matter SATA or IDE as long as work)

Software :-
1) GRBL -

2) GRBL Controller -
Trying a few, seem to like the browser based chilipepr when I wrote this.

3) X-loader (if uploading the hex to arduino when running Windows if not using avrdude or the IDE when running Linux)

This site is worth a visit


M1KTA said...

Asked why would I want to?

Well if you plot onto say a PCB and not paper and the pen you use is say a fine tipped permanent marker (like one of those things we once used in technical drawing class) you can specify in GRBL the 'bit size' that means you could make a etch mask. OK I agree not seriously tiny SMT perhaps but still pretty fine (or broad) depending on what you use.

I have a feeling you might be able to create a solder mask too on an etched board but that might be a bit fiddly as the solder mask usually overlaps both tracks and etched board.

Someone I know creates place setting cards for 100+ at a time and I am sure this might be of interest.

M1KTA said...

Currently I use "unipatch" which is the brand name for touching up PCB that need etched and they do the job fine. They come is different nib widths and write permanently to PCB fine.

There are quite a few different types and colours available.