Mhackney's Rostock Max

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SeeMeCNC Rostock MAX: a year in review...

Post by mhackney » Fri Mar 21, 2014 10:07 am

My Rostock MAX has been operational for slightly over a year. There have been LOTS of changes from SeeMeCNC over the year and great upgrades from the community (you guys and gals). There have also been many advances in the personal 3D printing world. The most important Rostock enhancements IMO have been the EZStruder from SeeMeCNC, Xnaron's printable magnetic u-joint upgrade (although SeeMeCNC's new delta arms are very nice too) and Gene's amazing assembly manual. I know the basic kit has undergone a lot of tweaks too but even my fairly early kit has been extremely reliable and trouble free (for a 3D printer!). I wanted to share some metrics on what these machines are capable of and what my machine has done, but first, here is a high level overview of how my Rostock is currently configured (you can see all of this in this thread or on my photo build log link):

Basic Rostock MAX kit, Xnaron magnetic arm upgrade, after market 12V and 24V power supplies mounted in base (where original PS was located). The 24V powers my Onyx. My original aluminum heat dissipator on top of the Onyx. It not only dissipates heat but constrains Onyx warpage. I really wish this upgrade had worked out commercially as it has been rock solid for me. I run a borosilicate plate covered with .03" PEI taped on with 3M tape on one side. (PEI is an amazing print surface.) I run the machine with a RAMBo v1.1b with the LCD display. I mounted my RAMBo differently for accessibility. It is also cooled with a fan to prevent stepper driver overheating. The business end is a 4 nozzle Kraken hot end driven by 4 EZStruders. It is water cooled and an amazing device. This is still a work in progress but coming along nicely. I'll be moving to an Azteeg X3 Pro controller to drive all 4 extruders, it's configured for 2 at this time with RAMBo. I've been running the threaded themistors in the E3D and Kraken exclusively and am completely sold on these as an upgrade. Two of the EZStruders are top mounted on printed mounts, the other two are on SeeMeCNC's "side arms". I have a part fan on the effector, used primarily for PLA parts. My hot bed reaches 80°C in less than 2 minutes with the 24V supply and 3 minutes to 100°C. And here are some metrics on what I've done with this machine:

  • I've printed well over 1000 parts of all sizes. You've seen some of them in the "What are YOU making?" topic. I've printed some amazingly tall and fat vases (one of my personal favorite items) that took over 12 hours to print down to a little gizmo that is less than 1cm^3 with lots of intricate features. Many of these 1000 parts have been the tenkara line holders that I now manufacture and sell.
  • I've printed LOTS of PLA, LOTS of ABS and a fair amount of Taulman Nylon (3 types), polycarbonate, NinjaFlex, Laywood, several soluble support filaments, and a few others I've forgotten about. I estimate that I've consumed about 18 1Kg spools of ABS and PLA.
  • I've been running my machine around 8 hrs a day most days for the last 3 months producing commercial parts. That's over 700 hours just for this period. Prior to that I had about 500 hours on the machine. I've not really had to do any maintenance to the mechanics of the machine. I do keep the Cheapskate bearing covers clean (isopropyl alcohol on a Q-tip does a great job).
  • There were some early reports last year on pre-mature belt wear, broken belt teeth, etc. During this time I've not had a single issue with belt wear. Until Tuesday, I had not touched my belts at all in over a year. Earlier this week I started to notice a little "part offset" at high print speeds that turned out to be a loose belt on my Y tower. A quick adjustment fixed that (the tensioning adjustment screw at the top of the tower was very loose. I do not have any special tension adjustment mods, just the original SeeMeCNC setup. Given that I've only had to adjust 1 belt re-tension in over a year, it doesn't seem like a mod is necessary. My MAX has the original small 15 tooth pulleys that were suspects for poor belt wear.
  • I've done a lot of experimenting with hot ends. I've installed and used several J-Heads, a E3D v5 hot end, a self-designed all stainless hot end and now, the 4 nozzle Kraken. the E3D and Kraken are my favorite by far (they share a common design) with the Kraken's water cooling edging out the E3D air cooling by a bit. I'm a big proponent of water cooling now. I've had no trouble printing PLA, ABS, Nylon or polycarbonate with these two extruders. The J-Head is also a very nice extruder. And the updated SeeMeCNC extruder with the new(isn) nozzle design is quite competent too. I've also tried a few other "exotics" like a direct drive Q3BD hot end/

So there you have it, a year in review for my Rostock MAX. I can only imagine what the next year will be like!

cheers,
Michael

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by Eaglezsoar » Fri Mar 21, 2014 11:32 am

I just read all that and now I think I need to take a nap. Reading about all that work made me tired.
Thanks for writing it though, it is a good testimonial to the reliability and durability of the Rostock Max.
You'll probably get over 1000 hours in the next year.

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by Prozac » Fri Mar 21, 2014 6:29 pm

Thanks for that , really good info for us new owners to know how well it holds up over time. I was thinking the belts would stretch and would eventually need trimmed or replaced.

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by geneb » Sat Mar 22, 2014 7:20 pm

The GT2 belts actually have fiber strings embedded in them so they won't really stretch. Kind of like how a "V" belt for a car is made.

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by Tinyhead » Mon Mar 24, 2014 3:44 pm

Awesome to know how well these things hold up. Thanks for the write up!

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Multiple extruder caution

Post by mhackney » Mon Mar 24, 2014 7:50 pm

This is a cautionary tale! Currently, different versions of Repetier firmware has different pin configurations for the second and third hot ends and thermistors. If you forget to edit Pins.h to fix this and IF you have 24v on your heated bed, you WILL blow your heat cartridge on hot end 1. How do I know, I did it twice unknowingly and the "second time was the charm" in terms of investigating the cause! This is how Repetier .91 is configured (on GitHub) and is BAD, BAD, BAD! Do you see why? HEATER_PIN_1 is the same as HEATER_BED_PIN (pin 3). That means the hot end will get the 24V to it unintentionally.

#define HEATER_BED_PIN 3
#define TEMP_BED_PIN 2

#define HEATER_0_PIN 9
#define TEMP_0_PIN 0

#define HEATER_1_PIN 3
#define TEMP_1_PIN 2

#define HEATER_2_PIN -1
#define TEMP_2_PIN -1


This is correct:

#define HEATER_BED_PIN 3
#define TEMP_BED_PIN 2

#define HEATER_0_PIN 9
#define TEMP_0_PIN 0

#define HEATER_1_PIN 7
#define TEMP_1_PIN 1

#define HEATER_2_PIN -1
#define TEMP_2_PIN -1

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by enggmaug » Tue Mar 25, 2014 2:32 am

MHackney, I don't understand how it could blow your heat cartridge. It will not send 24V to it.

The pinning is just to inform the software which pin to trigger to heat up, and which one to read the temp on. if both are on the bed pins, in my oppinion, it should just heat up the bed when you ask it to, and heat up the bed when you ask the hot end1 to.
The thing is you will ask a higher temp for the hot end than the bed. So it could damage the bed, or anything related to the bed control.

Can you tell me more about your wiring, because I really don't understand what happened to you.

However, I fully agree. it is BAD (BAD BAD).

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by mhackney » Tue Mar 25, 2014 7:46 am

Good point. However this is two times that these pins were set incorrectly and the cartridge blew.

Pretty standard wiring that I posted here last week. I have hot end and thermister 0 hooked up exactly like they have been for over a year. I've hooked up my second hot end to hot end and thermister 1 terminals on RAMBo and heated bed is on the heated terminals. Nothing fancy. I am constantly changing firmware working on a couple of different things. When I grabbed the latest repetier yesterday I forgot to configure pins.h and when I ran, I got no heating of the 2nd hot end. So I started debugging. When I hook up hot end 1 to the hot end 0 port and vice versa verifies that the cartridge originally in hot end 1 is inoperative. That also validates that all the wiring, etc is fine (which has been working for over a week now). Then I checked the pins.h configuration and found the incorrect setup there, so I updated pins.h. I have not re-installed a new cartridge to validate that it will work but having done almost exactly this same sequence earlier, I am pretty sure it will. There is also the possibility that I have 2 bad cartridges - although they came from 2 completely different sources and one was a year old or more.

But now that I think about your comment, I agree that the pins configuration should/could not have affected this hot end!

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by enggmaug » Tue Mar 25, 2014 12:17 pm

If in the end, you get to understand what happened to your cartridge, then please, let me know...

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by dpmacri » Tue Mar 25, 2014 1:37 pm

I thought the SeeMeCnc version of Repetier 0.91 had (has) a modification that assumes the PEEK fan is attached to HEAT 1. So I thought it turned HEAT 1 on to 100% as soon as it starts heating up Extruder 0. Could it be that just applying 100% power to the cartridge has burned it up?

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by mhackney » Tue Mar 25, 2014 2:43 pm

Not sure and I am not using the default configuration since I am experimenting with multiple extrusion. However, oddly, this morning I was checking some things and determined that this cartridge is fine and is working properly installed on the Max now. But, I have been using the .91.7 version of Repetier, enabling the precision delta calculations, loading Marlin, etc. I have noticed some very odd things with the .91.7 causing unexplained translations in X-Y and seeming "frozen" only to have an Emergency Stop clear everything up. It's possible it was operator error or some communication anomaly that I've been experiencing with .91.7.

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by Renha » Sat Jul 05, 2014 4:12 pm

mhackney, what firmware would you recommend to use with azteeg X3 pro and kraken? Could you put somewhere your tweaked firmware files with some comments please?
3D printing is magic!

Sorry my engrish :-/ you could PM me in Russian.

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by mhackney » Sat Jul 05, 2014 4:14 pm

Renha, I'm, using the latest Repetier. I'd be happy to post the info but I am at the airport traveling to Warsaw, Poland for the week! It will have to wait until I return.

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by Renha » Sun Jul 13, 2014 12:53 pm

Ok, thanks! I hope your voyage is (or was) good!
3D printing is magic!

Sorry my engrish :-/ you could PM me in Russian.

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by Renha » Fri Aug 01, 2014 2:01 pm

How are you? Is all ok?
3D printing is magic!

Sorry my engrish :-/ you could PM me in Russian.

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by mhackney » Fri Aug 01, 2014 2:04 pm

Renha, thanks for asking. All is fine, just extremely busy with everything right now! Travel is over but now a lot of work and family stuff going on.

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by RegB » Tue Aug 05, 2014 10:28 am

I just got an E3D-V6 and I am a bit concerned about the heater cartridge.
The wires come STRAIGHT OUT and feel quite stiff.
I slid the outermost insulation back and found what SEEMS like thin ceramic sleeves around the metal wires. I want to NOT bend and break these - if that is what they are.

and yet... there is a picture on this page;
http://e3d-online.com/E3D-v6-Assembly
that shows the wires bent 90 degrees to go straight up.

Earlier in this thread there are some pictures of the wires taking a gentler sweep - which agrees more with my intuition about strain relief.

Guidance ?
Has anyone broken a cartridge or insulation by bending the wires up too sharply ?
{ & will you ADMIT it ? (-: }

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by mhackney » Tue Aug 05, 2014 10:33 am

I've used a lot of these cartridges and have about 11 of them here ready for other projects. You can bend them very sharply without concern. I used a gentler bend on my rostock because the Kraken is a big, hot beast! On my other machines the wires are almost a sharp 90° - lets say the radius of a dime. I've not broken one yet.

cheers,
Michael

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Astrosyn Vibration Dampers!!!

Post by mhackney » Tue Aug 26, 2014 7:36 pm

I finally broke down and purchased 3 sets of Astrosyn dampers for Astroboy. They came in on Saturday and only took 20 minutes to install on my Rostock Max. No significant disassembly required - just remove the steppers, add the dampers, adjust the pulley and reinstall.

I CAN NOT BELIEVE HOW QUITE MY PRINTER IS NOW! Seriously, I thought these were a gimmick until I read some trusted posts and felt compelled to try them. It is remarkable how much quieter it makes the printer. I have my machine right next to my computer where I work all day. Before it was too load to use in the background while I was on conference calls, now I can run it all the time!

cheers,
Michael

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!!!! DANGER DANGER !!!!

Post by mhackney » Tue Aug 26, 2014 8:12 pm

I had been running for over a year with my 24V supply hooked directly to RAMBo and then to my Onyx. When I rewired my Rostock a couple of weeks ago top permanently use my Azteeg X3 Pro I decided to "do the right thing" and use an SSR to control the Onyx. It had been working for a couple of weeks and just now, I noticed that distinctive "magic smoke" smell. Then I heard sparks so I immediately unplugged everything. When I opened the bay the smell was bad and the Fotek SSR-25 DD was extremely hot - way too hot to touch. The wires in and out were cool but the SSR was melting down. I've not experienced this with an SSR before and I got the 25A version as I thought that was plenty, maybe not.

Now I have a little anxiety about going down this path again. If I had stepped out to get some water or something I might have had a melted down printer best case or a burned down house worse case. Anyone have any reliable recommendations for an SSR?

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Re: Mhackney's Rostock Max

Post by DavidF » Tue Aug 26, 2014 8:16 pm

I think I would miss the music. When I'm running a 40 hour plus long print and wake up at 3 am I can just listen and hear the printer still going. That way I don't have to get out of bed to check on it, especially when you have a nightmare that you ran out of filament right at the end of a print, very comforting sound to wake up to LOL
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Re: !!!! DANGER DANGER !!!!

Post by bdjohns1 » Mon Sep 01, 2014 3:25 pm

mhackney wrote:Now I have a little anxiety about going down this path again. If I had stepped out to get some water or something I might have had a melted down printer best case or a burned down house worse case. Anyone have any reliable recommendations for an SSR?


Here's the one I'm using on my bed. I don't have quite the number of hours on my printer that you've got on yours, but it's been running fine so far - even though he says it's completely unnecessary, I've got the heat sink mounted on it too. I haven't aimed an IR thermometer at it, but it doesn't feel like it's getting above ambient with the heat sink.

http://www.auberins.com/index.php?main_ ... cts_id=288

I've bought a fair amount of electronics from this guy for my other hobby - beer making - I've got an electric setup where I'm switching 240V water heater elements with his SSRs - those definitely need heat sinking.

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Re: !!!! DANGER DANGER !!!!

Post by Broose » Mon Sep 01, 2014 4:31 pm

I blew a couple of Fotek SSRs with heatsinks myself and went back to hooking up directly to the Rambo board with my 24V power supply. I wonder if the PWM frequency is too high for these cheaper SSRs. I think some people hook them up with bang-bang control instead of PWM for that reason although they probably don't have as good temperature control.

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Re: !!!! DANGER DANGER !!!!

Post by bdjohns1 » Mon Sep 01, 2014 8:05 pm

Broose wrote:I blew a couple of Fotek SSRs with heatsinks myself and went back to hooking up directly to the Rambo board with my 24V power supply. I wonder if the PWM frequency is too high for these cheaper SSRs. I think some people hook them up with bang-bang control instead of PWM for that reason although they probably don't have as good temperature control.


You can change the HEATER_PWM_SPEED in Repetier's Configuration.h to go as low as 15Hz (value = 0). I have mine at setting #1 (30 Hz) and it's been fine so far.

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Re: !!!! DANGER DANGER !!!!

Post by Broose » Mon Sep 01, 2014 9:22 pm

bdjohns1 wrote:You can change the HEATER_PWM_SPEED in Repetier's Configuration.h to go as low as 15Hz (value = 0). I have mine at setting #1 (30 Hz) and it's been fine so far.


That's good to know. I couldn't find that entry in the default RostockMax Repetier configuration.h file. Where is it located in your file?

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