My first ‘real’ MDF part made successfully

Well I managaed last night to design a Sumpod holder for a dual extrusion hot end for my printer using Alibre 3D CAD and exporting the file in .stl format. I then converted it to GCode vie Skeinforge software before loading the code into ReplicatorG. That would have been a real headache a couple of days ago but it went without a hitch.

I then mounted some 19mm thick MDF on the MDF by putting a foam layer first, then mounting the MDF onto the foam. I have been using double sided tape used for carpets and it has been a total success. I also bolt the table to the 'Y'axis. The milling went very well indeed but I did have a couple of issues. Firstly, the flexible shaft I was using did not stand up to the deeper cuts so I mounted the Dremel 4000 directly to the tool holder and that proved very stable.

Secondly, I interefered too much and using a hoover to keep the channels clean but instead of pausing the print (doh!!) tried to use it by chasing the movement. This caused one jam, hence the cut to one hole! Once I got it into my head to pause the build, hoover then restart it went well. Thats until the next problem arose. Stupidly I choose a cutter that had the shaft thicker than the cutting head! I must get new glasses!!!!! This meant that as the cutter ran deeper it started to jam. Once I worked out what it was I found the right 3mm diameter cutter and restarted the whole build.

This went right through the 1 hour process with out a hitch! If I had done this from the beggining it would have been very successfull, not that it wasn't a success. It was, with the cutter just breaking though. All I had to do was a light cut on part of the base and the holder came out. I will sand it and paint it tomorrow and it will be ready to use.

On the forum I asked a question on how to zet the Z axis since I 'cheat' and set it by hand. I was surprised to learn that the couple of others who are printing in plastic also set it by hand so I thought I would make a handle of sorts to help me position the Z axis since it is a little tight to get a hand in when its near the top. This will be a temporary fix since there are greater minds than mine looking at a software fix. I have included a photo of my handle but ran out of time to fix it in place today.




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  1. [...] mill. It’s milling capability is demonstrated in the youtube clip at the end of the post at 3D-printer-kt.com. I’m tempted to do some milling myself but I think the noise will be too much for the other [...]

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