At the beginning we wanted to build our prototype fully out of plastic printed pieces. After some experimentation we realized that the plastic pieces did not have the strength we needed and that they were too inaccurate to fit on top of each other. So we decided to build our machine out of square tubes and inner pipe connectors, used in the industry.
The first result stood in February 2017 and it was more stable and precise than initially anticipated. It works exactly the same as the first prototype but only in larger format and driven by motors.
Our printer consists of a 2 dimensional platform, where 3 motors are moving the axis with the help of extendable V-belts. This platform hangs from four towers, connected with each other, to improve the stability of the machine. The platform can then be pulled up simultaneously by non-stretchable belts, connected to the steppers motor, which are fixed on top of each tower.
As we were proceeding well, there were the first problems coming up to us. We had to weld some metal parts, which reduced the modularity.