Sunday, October 24, 2010

No luck on keeping the metal bridge

Well after looking and trying to fit the Lexmark stepper motor to the metal bridge I've decided to ditch it and use some wood I had sitting around the garage from previous projects. So I used the metal rod, the print head, the pulley(?) and tensioner from the print head bridge and reconstructed it from some solid wood. Doesn't look half-way bad :)

I do do apologize for the odd red huge in the picture above, the wood is actually a nice yellow shade. Anyway as you can see the tensioner is recessed and the guiding rod is holding the printhead. The print head will hold the laser later on.

Underneath the printhead you can see the movable table. It's a piece of wood, not heavy but not very bendy at all, it's 9 by 14" which is the area this CNC laser will be able to reach. The table will be attached using the Lexmark's scanner pulley, tensioner and stepper motor. I had originally planned to use the rods that held the scanner optics to hold the table but I decided against that for now because there was only one attachment spot, which meant the table would tip and seesaw, not exactly desirable behavior. The table is mounted on 4 wheels, that previously served as paper guides inside the MP530.

So after about 5 hours of work I have the basic construction almost ready. I still need to connect the belt for the table and route a hole for the stepper motor so it's gears are flush with the base. Oh and of course finish the legs for the bridge, it's sitting on my daughters wood blocks, she's sure to want them back if she finds out I'm borrowing them.

The garage pre cleanup tonight. You can see lots of printer innards, my daughters work in the back :)

Cost so far - 0$ all materials were already in the garage, wood, printers, tools and glue. I will need to figure something out for the drivers though. I'm considering the EasyDriver by Sparkfun.

Once I have two of those, I'll still need the laser, it's driver and a parallel port!

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