Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

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prussiap
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Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby prussiap » Tue Dec 15, 2015 12:27 pm

Hi,
I got a Diamond Hot end and am building a smaller experimental (kossel mini) but after a bit of research I read that I could add an expansion board maybe to my RAMPS in my Rostock Max V2 ?

Can somebody confirm and/or help me out with this.

Expansion is called Extrudrboard here: http://reprap.me/printrbot-extrudrboard.html
Some info here: http://reprap.org/wiki/Adding_more_extruders

diamond hot end: http://www.3ders.org/articles/20150402- ... arter.html

I think it's probably easier to add this expansion board, though I'm a bit fuzzy on hardware/firmware changes I'll need for my Rostock Max V2, then to use a new brain like Azteeg X3 pro or Rumba board replacement and totally new software etc ?

Thoughts any help if somebody has done this. I'd love to get a head start on my Max 2 but I was afraid of messing with this printer thus the experimental new one :)

Anyway help please,
David

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby Eaglezsoar » Tue Dec 15, 2015 1:36 pm

The Reprap page gives you the wiring diagram to make it work so that is taken care of.
The rest would be slicer configuration to use the extra nozzles (hotends) plus the firmware would need to be modified by
creating and configuring new pins for the added extruders.
If you type in the following in your search bar of your browser site:forum.seemecnc.com dual extruders
you will find threads where people talk about how they added more hotend extruders to their printers.
Best of luck!

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby Polygonhell » Tue Dec 15, 2015 6:37 pm

The hardware is straight forwards you can just go buy a stepper driver board like those on the ramps board (about $5-$10).
You just need to pick 3 unused IO pins, and connect enable, step, direction, 12V power and the 4 output pins for the stepper.
The only real gotcha is that the boards are very susceptible to over voltage, so you NEED to have a decently sized capacitor across the 12V lines to prevent them from dying during power up/down.
You'll also need to manually adjust the current pot.
The firmware isn't complicated if you understand what you need to change, BUT I would suggest you find someone locally who understands how all the parts fit together, without that knowledge your going to end up with a very frustrating excercise, trying to figure out what any issue actually is.

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby prussiap » Thu Dec 17, 2015 12:30 pm

Hi,
Thanks for the info.
I guess i'm still a bit lost so will keep researching. @polygonhell you mean these?
https://www.dropbox.com/s/15sf4tkq0p1y7 ... 6.jpg?dl=0
https://www.dropbox.com/s/928tpkr742fq6 ... 6.jpg?dl=0

I have a few but you mean solder them directly without using the Extruderboard ? Sadly there aren't many people in our neck of the woods with a deep firmware/hardware understanding of these printers. I'm trying to get there. Trying to figure out what pins I could use by looking at this schematic: http://rigidtalk.com/wiki/index.php?tit ... ematic.png
Google didn't show any example wirings sadly.

@Eaglezsoar One of the beauties of Diamond hot end is just one nozzle for three different filaments. I just need to control the 2 extra steppers.

I'm an arduino person so not too bad on soldering/coding I just want to make sure I know what I'm getting into before I destroy a perfectly good working printer :)

Thanks,
David

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby Polygonhell » Thu Dec 17, 2015 3:45 pm

I guess i'm still a bit lost so will keep researching. @polygonhell you mean these?
https://www.dropbox.com/s/15sf4tkq0p1y7 ... 6.jpg?dl=0
https://www.dropbox.com/s/928tpkr742fq6 ... 6.jpg?dl=0


Yes something like that, there are a lot of variations with varying drivers, but they the boards are pretty much all electrically equivalent.
I would probably solder connectors directly to the stepper board, or if I'm feeling lazy a small bread board to verify the wiring, you are literally just running wires from the driverboard to the IO pins, short out the uStep jumpers and provide power. The driver board pinouts and specs are available at places like pololu.

The reason I recommended finding someone who knows how it all works end to end is because when it doesn't work, your stuck in no mans land trying to debug it you have no idea if the issue is the wiring, the electronics or the software configuration. If you have and are comfortable using a scope it's really not that hard to debug, if you don't, it can be an excercise in frustration.

I would probably pull the signal lines of Aux3 or Aux4 (but I'd have to validate none of them are actually being used), run power directly from the PSU and put a big capacitor across the power line. Since you only need 3 signal lines You could also probably use the unused endstop lines.
The only issue with configuring the firmware is understanding the way the numbered firmware pins map to the arduino IO's, and ensuring none of you selected pins are being "used" by anything else.

It's not rocket science, but IME debugging these sorts of things when they don't work requires having decent test equipment and a methodical approach to establishing what's working and what isn't.

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby Eric » Thu Dec 17, 2015 3:53 pm

One of the greatest strengths of these driver modules is that they're easily replaced, but direct soldering defeats that. I'd suggest using protoboard and putting female headers on it for the modules. You'd end up with a DIY version of part or all of http://reprap.org/wiki/Adding_more_extruders#RAMPS_using_CNC_Shield. That page also gives you the basics on firmware changes required to use it.

Looking at your RAMPS schematic, the free pins are going to be found on the AUX and Servo connectors. If you have an LCD, then AUX3 and 4 are in use. Either way, should be plenty of pins for this purpose. VCC and GND are also found on those connectors. You also need motor power, from the 12V supply. Looking at the same schematic, see the Stepper Drivers? One or more of those circuits is what you want to replicate, changing only the input pins. And, as Poly said, don't forget the 100uF capacitor between GND and 12V, placed as close to the driver board as practical.

All depends on how much of a DIYer you are.

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby JJPowelly » Tue Dec 22, 2015 1:17 am

Do you mean ramps or rambo? The Rostock comes stock with a Rambo board, not ramps...

As for adding another stepper motor, that is easy on the ramps... A little more tricky for the rambo... This past week i managed the get a stepper motor hooked up through a weird combination of the MX ports... I don't have it perfect just yet, but it should only be about another week until I have the stepping, current, and firmware all squared away... I rewrote the firmware already, and it's good to go, I'm just experimenting with different stepper motor drivers right now to optimize performance and microstepping....

Here's I video I made the other day explaining how to do it. I search high and low on the internet trying to see if anyone else has done this successfully, and I think I may be the only one so far to get it working...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E6QRihCgjec

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby prussiap » Thu Dec 24, 2015 8:46 am

Hi,
Thanks for the video. You are indeed the first one I've seen to at least document the process let alone do it :) . Ramps is what I meant as I'd rather not change the board if I don't need to. Looks like you're doing diamond hot end too.

Do you have your firmware yet to share or any other files? I did the mods last night during my project night event with our maker space. It was a community effort :) . The other two steppers can use the built in connectors. Also where are you placing the other two spools? Did you mod the top or just put them on the side with the extruders that came with diamond hot end.

Thanks to you I'm significantly closer on both my Rostock and my experimental printer.

David

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby JJPowelly » Thu Dec 24, 2015 7:30 pm

Sorry David, but youre still confusing me... You keep saying ramps... the ramps is a cheap pcb add on to an arduino mega... the rambo is the one that comes with the rostock... two totally different boards.

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby prussiap » Thu Dec 24, 2015 10:45 pm

Rambo is what I meant.

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby prussiap » Mon Dec 28, 2015 1:29 pm

Any chance on getting your firmware notes or info for how you coded the two new steppers in the video?

I guess I'll mimic a bit the retraction and other settings they have on diamond hot end.

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby JJPowelly » Mon Dec 28, 2015 6:06 pm

When I get finished / and around to it - I'll make a detailed video and/or instructables or something. I'm currently trying to find the best combination of drivers/boards/pins/code/etc... So far I've found about 5 different ways to make this work... I'm just trying to figure out the best way right now... Which is not straight forward...

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby jesse » Mon Dec 28, 2015 6:30 pm

I was able to get the RAMPs 1.4 working with the CNC Shield. It adds four extruders. I was trying to get it working with a Diamond 3 to 1 nozzle but haven't had much time.

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby prussiap » Tue Dec 29, 2015 7:39 pm

@jesse you mean this? http://www.miniinthebox.com/3d-printer- ... s_shopping
How did you set that up on Ramps? Any thoughts welcome.

@jjpowelly it looked like you had some code going (I think that was your video) to move the servos in that example.

Well I have the same issue time and lack of understanding but trying to get there. There are definitely a few options though I didn't get as many as 5 :) .

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby JJPowelly » Wed Dec 30, 2015 5:04 am

Yeah, I'm trying to gauge your level of technical/mechanical understanding to see how I should explain this... I'll try to keep it as basic as possible... However, I'm a professional engineer, so it's hard for me to explain basic concepts without first assuming a certain level of knowledge from whom I am explaining it to... I want to be as helpful as possible - but if I sound condescending or like a dick at anytime - just know it's not my intent... But like I said, I'm an not an HR/PR guy - I'm an engineer - so my social skills naturally aren't the best, lol...

First, we REALLY gotta stop saying Ramps when we mean Rambo, it's really confusing me now... Adding extra motors to RAMPs = very, very easy... Adding more steppers to Rambo = not so easy (but also not too hard)... But if you bought the Rostock printer from SeeMeCNC you have a Rambo board. The only way you have a RAMPs is if you physically made the decision to buy one and put it in yourself... But no sane person would do that given the fact that Rambo is a vastly superior board compared to the RAMPs... (Think trading in a Corvette for a Kia)


Second, Servos != Steppers... Steppers and servos are two totally different types of motors... They are not interchangeable and shouldn't be talked about interchangeably... (same applies to engine vs motor - another pet peeve of mine, but I won't get into that here)

Servo Motors

Fast, high torque, accurate rotation within a limited angle – Generally a high performance alternative to stepper motors, but more complicated setup with PWM tuning. Suited for robotic arms/legs or rudder control etc.

Stepper Motors

Slow, precise rotation, easy set up & control – Advantage over servo motors in positional control. Where servos require a feedback mechanism and support circuitry to drive positioning, a stepper motor has positional control via its nature of rotation by fractional increments. Suited for 3D printers and similar devices where position is fundamental.

Basically:
SERVOS = Robots
STEPPERS = Linear motion / CNC motion


As for my setup now... I completely changed what I did in terms of setup since making the last video... I bought a little stepper expansion board from reprap.me (I think you talked about it in this thread already)... I bought it to play around with it - not expecting it to work - however, when I hooked it up to the Rambo and played with the firmware, it ended up working out for me... So there's that...


Right now I'm designing my own EZ(er)-Struder... and new 'Flyin Struder' to support the three stepper motors that drive the filament into the Diamond... I'm also dealing with all the extra wiring that comes with adding these extra motors and how to route that up to the top of the machine... Right now, I'm about 1-2 days way from having this 100% set-up and printing...


Here are a few pictures....

DSCN1183.JPG


DSCN1178.JPG


DSCN1190.JPG


DSCN1185.JPG


DSCN1186.JPG


DSCN1186.JPG
Attachments
DSCN1187.JPG
Last edited by JJPowelly on Wed Dec 30, 2015 7:35 am, edited 4 times in total.

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby JJPowelly » Wed Dec 30, 2015 5:29 am

As for Firmware, I posted this last week on another thread on here... Here's a copy and paste of what I posted...



It sucks the rambo doesn't have very much in terms of technical documentation (especially v1.3, pretty much nothing)... To find the best pins and voltages, I literally had to unravel the schematic because the only schematic that gives (accurate) digital pin outs was for the v1.1... So I literally had to solve a riddle to figure out which pins (that weren't already used) go where... That's what took the longest for me... I'm a computer science guy by trade, coding is one of my strengths... So I had the firmware good before I even started with the electrical... However, The digipot is still a riddle to me right now...

I found the nomenclature for the digipot and looked up the manufactures specifications and data sheets. It's a 6 channel digipot, but only 5 of those channels are declared in the code... The main channel line is declared in pins.h

Code: Select all

#define DIGIPOT_CHANNELS {4,5,3,0,1} // X,Y,Z,E0,E1


To me, this is a very odd array of channels, especially when you look at the board - it makes no sense why they would number it that way... clearly there are 6 overall channels and channel 2 (or 3 if you're starting with 1) is not used...So there is an open channel on the digipot, it's just a matter of finding where it leads to... I would imagine, since the digipot's primary concern is current control and micro stepping, that the vmot aux that I showed in the video (the one seeme uses as a board fan) is actually that 6th channels voltage out, or can at least be mapped to it... Even more proof is that, the 12v (vmot) out is also under the same fuse as the rest of the motors... and then the microstepping pins (MS1 and MS2 for 4982) route out to the analog auxiliary due to the fact that the majority of the MS pins are in the pin 60-69 range - which is also the auxiliary out ports' range... But like I said, the documentation to verify all this is nonexistent, so I'm literally solving this problem like a detective... I would love to have at least one accurate pinout/schematic... Their github doesn't even have anything of great use... Even an eagle file would be great... I mean, the board exists, it had to be made somehow, this shit does exist somewhere.

So I ended up adding another channel to the array (2) for the third extruder

Code: Select all

#define DIGIPOT_CHANNELS {4,5,3,0,1,2} // X,Y,Z,E0,E1,E2




The objects/constructors for the digipot channels are constructed in commands.cpp here...

Code: Select all

#if STEPPER_CURRENT_CONTROL==CURRENT_CONTROL_DIGIPOT
// Digipot methods for controling current and microstepping

#if defined(DIGIPOTSS_PIN) && DIGIPOTSS_PIN > -1
int digitalPotWrite(int address, unsigned int value) // From Arduino DigitalPotControl example
{
WRITE(DIGIPOTSS_PIN,LOW); // take the SS pin low to select the chip
HAL::spiSend(address); // send in the address and value via SPI:
HAL::spiSend(value);
WRITE(DIGIPOTSS_PIN,HIGH); // take the SS pin high to de-select the chip:
//delay(10);
}

void setMotorCurrent(uint8_t driver, unsigned int current)
{
const uint8_t digipot_ch[] = DIGIPOT_CHANNELS;
digitalPotWrite(digipot_ch[driver], current);
}
#endif

void motorCurrentControlInit() //Initialize Digipot Motor Current
{
#if DIGIPOTSS_PIN && DIGIPOTSS_PIN > -1
const uint8_t digipot_motor_current[] = MOTOR_CURRENT;

HAL::spiInit(0); //SPI.begin();
SET_OUTPUT(DIGIPOTSS_PIN);
for(int i=0; i<=4; i++)
//digitalPotWrite(digipot_ch[i], digipot_motor_current[i]);
setMotorCurrent(i,digipot_motor_current[i]);
#endif





In the same file "commands.cpp" I added my Extruder2 (3) variables and identities, only a few lines... but it all compiled and didn't throw back any pointers, throw exceptions, errors or whatever shit the compiler usually wants to give me in error... So the digipot must be using those added pins and controlling them because the motor is spinning after all... So I'm not sure if it's magic, or if I actually figured it out...

NOTE: Arduino's compiler is NOT backwards compatible with repetier firmware... This FW is written in Rep v0.91, the new version is v0.92... This code WILL compile in arduino 1.6.5, however, it WILL NOT compile in 1.6.6 or newer... And visa-versa - Rep FW v0.92 will compile in 1.6.6 and newer, but not in 1.6.5 or older... SOLUTION: tough shit? uninstall arduino IDE and reinstall it with the version that will work... It's a pain in the ass, but arduino is a glorified text editor - AT BEST - it's not comprehensive IDE like Eclipse or Netbeans... So there's a lot of short comings with Arduino IDE in terms of debugging and configuring advanced FW packages like this one... Someone should really create a new IDE with ardiuno API so it would be easier to configure stuff like this...


There are only a few lines of REAL source code I changed outside of the basic macro declaration header files - pins.h and configuration.h - that most people like to call "the code", but they've never touched any other file and would be completely lost 5 lines into any of the cpp files... But Repetier is good code, and a good sign of good code is scalability and object orientedness, so I didn't have to do much and had very little trouble throwing those lines in there and getting it to compile without issue.



Code: Select all

#if defined(X_MS1_PIN) && X_MS1_PIN > -1
void microstepMS(uint8_t driver, int8_t ms1, int8_t ms2)
{
if(ms1 > -1) switch(driver)
{
case 0:
WRITE( X_MS1_PIN,ms1);
break;
case 1:
WRITE( Y_MS1_PIN,ms1);
break;
case 2:
WRITE( Z_MS1_PIN,ms1);
break;
case 3:
WRITE(E0_MS1_PIN,ms1);
break;
case 4:
WRITE(E1_MS1_PIN,ms1);
break;
case 5:
WRITE(E2_MS1_PIN,ms1);
break;
}
if(ms2 > -1) switch(driver)
{
case 0:
WRITE( X_MS2_PIN,ms2);
break;
case 1:
WRITE( Y_MS2_PIN,ms2);
break;
case 2:
WRITE( Z_MS2_PIN,ms2);
break;
case 3:
WRITE(E0_MS2_PIN,ms2);
break;
case 4:
WRITE(E1_MS2_PIN,ms2);
break;
case 5:
WRITE(E2_MS2_PIN,ms2);
break;
}
}

void microstepMode(uint8_t driver, uint8_t stepping_mode)
{
switch(stepping_mode)
{
case 1:
microstepMS(driver,MICROSTEP1);
break;
case 2:
microstepMS(driver,MICROSTEP2);
break;
case 4:
microstepMS(driver,MICROSTEP4);
break;
case 8:
microstepMS(driver,MICROSTEP8);
break;
case 16:
microstepMS(driver,MICROSTEP16);
break;
}
}
void microstepReadings()
{
Com::printFLN(Com::tMS1MS2Pins);
Com::printF(Com::tXColon,READ(X_MS1_PIN));
Com::printFLN(Com::tComma,READ(X_MS2_PIN));
Com::printF(Com::tYColon,READ(Y_MS1_PIN));
Com::printFLN(Com::tComma,READ(Y_MS2_PIN));
Com::printF(Com::tZColon,READ(Z_MS1_PIN));
Com::printFLN(Com::tComma,READ(Z_MS2_PIN));
Com::printF(Com::tE0Colon,READ(E0_MS1_PIN));
Com::printFLN(Com::tComma,READ(E0_MS2_PIN));
Com::printF(Com::tE1Colon,READ(E1_MS1_PIN));
Com::printFLN(Com::tComma,READ(E1_MS2_PIN));
Com::printF(Com::tE2Colon,READ(E2_MS1_PIN));
Com::printFLN(Com::tComma,READ(E2_MS2_PIN));
}
#endif

void microstepInit()
{
#if defined(X_MS1_PIN) && X_MS1_PIN > -1
const uint8_t microstep_modes[] = MICROSTEP_MODES;
SET_OUTPUT(X_MS2_PIN);
SET_OUTPUT(Y_MS2_PIN);
SET_OUTPUT(Z_MS2_PIN);
SET_OUTPUT(E0_MS2_PIN);
SET_OUTPUT(E1_MS2_PIN);
SET_OUTPUT(E2_MS1_PIN);
SET_OUTPUT(E2_MS2_PIN);
SET_OUTPUT(E2_MS3_PIN);
for(int i=0; i<=4; i++) microstepMode(i,microstep_modes[i]);
#endif





I'm not too far away though, I have the stepper motor spinning as third extruder through repetier, so the hard part is done... now I just need to fine tune everything and get all my steps, current, heat, etc all together... It should be about another week and I'll be done...

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby Eric » Wed Dec 30, 2015 2:18 pm

I'm going to have to disagree with your Corvette/Kia comparision, since that implies performance differences that simply aren't there. The differences are almost all in packaging, not performance.

A better car analogy would be the same car with different trim levels. They perform almost exactly the same on the road, but the one with leather seats and power seats has a few extra features and costs more to buy. A RAMPS setup (including everything) is significantly cheaper to buy than the all-in-one Rambo. The most significant extra feature on the Rambo is the digipots instead of manual pots (automatic tire inflation instead of manual, if you want a car analogy).

And yes, I responded earlier about RAMPS, because that appeared to be what he was talking about. Now we know it's really a Rambo, so on with the story.

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby Polygonhell » Wed Dec 30, 2015 3:08 pm

I would not undervalue the digipots.
I have 3 or 4 RAMPS boards here, and setting the pots consistently was one of the bigger bears, depending on the driver and the pot you could have perhaps a 1/16th of a turn window where they behaved.
Now setting the uStepping in the firmware, rather than with physical jumpers on RAMPs is much more like automatic tire inflation.

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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby prussiap » Thu Dec 31, 2015 3:14 pm

Hi all,
First thanks for all the info. And yes my apologies. Running on 1hr of sleep at most and 103F for last 5 days. Combine that with a Rambo, a Ramps and an Azteeg X3 pro build all simultaneously (thankfully getting help with the other two). It's definitely my fault there on terminology and I will try to replace in edits. I did respond to RAMPS build but was my fault to start.

Stock Rostock Max V2 and Rambo since that's what comes with it. I was considering replacing with Rumba or Azteeg X3 pro but was hoping this Rambo mod would be easier. Seems that it's just a bit of soldering and wiring and adding the proper lines of code. You mentioned you went with the expansion board in the end? so this one: http://reprap.me/printrbot-extrudrboard.html I assume your code corresponds then.

I'm also very well aware of servo vs Stepper motors. I've been a software and hardware guy for a while but rather new to 3D printers. This Rostock Max V2 was my first personal venture in this field and I've been terrified to make any changes up until now. Trying to just improve my ABS prints. (I haven't even put the fans on for PLA yet).

I think I need to digest this but you're saying to look for digipots for the additional stepper? Any chance of a pic of your board with an arrow? I would need a third stepper but there is already an empty stepper slot for that.

You said that you were only 1-2 days from finished, working and testing the build so I'd love to hear the ending. First, how did you modify the effector carriage (sorry for terminology) to fit the new diamond. From the picture it looks like you just added the plastic part they gave to us to the existing effector structure? I've seen some prints on Thingiverse for a mod or replacement also.

I hope to do exactly what you're doing with the three filaments up top. They gave me three stepper motors that look identical to yours so guessing we did a similar Kickstarter level.

Code: Select all

#define DIGIPOT_CHANNELS {4,5,3,0,1} // X,Y,Z,E0,E1

Looking at your code snippet I'll guess E1 is the stepper that's the available free slot on the board not currently used and obviously the last stepper is the digipot one you mentioned.

To clarify since i'm rather slow lately, you're saying to use firmware for Repetier 0.92 with Arduino 1.6.5 ? That's fine I have to have like 4 versions of Arduino on my machine for Esp8266, arduino and other specific builds. It does get annoying.
I wish there was a tutorial to get a better understanding of the parts of firmware that are important and making changes. Both for Rep or Marlin. This without having to dig into the code for hours... I want to get better at modifying my printer, learn how the parts interact and make improvements for my Hacklab as well just sometimes overwhelmed with the options and also lack of information (reliable information).
SeemeCNC only has the Repetier 0.91 showing so I was afraid of using 0.92. That's all due to my lack of understanding of the firmwares, the changes and how to get my configs to stay the same.. I'm trying to get a better understanding ofhow to make changes to improve my printing and builds but it will take me some time as it's only on my off hours.
Reading your code snippet was very elucidating for some things.

Finally I'd love that EZ(er) struder mod of yours. I'm having issues with the built in one probably being too tight thus grinding the plastic and causing under-extrusion among other things. But yeah any calibrations, steps, heating etc other things you do I'd love to get hold of. You're definitely a trailblazer, have superior engineering knowledge with these printers and the info you have given me already gets me significantly further and faster then I could have gone on my own with no 3D printer gurus in my area.

I will also be doing a write up of your work and whatever I have to do (obviously you'll be lead on there) and either posting it on CNC or letting the guys at reprap/diamond getting access. Might help them and others get to printing faster.

Thank you more then I can express in words for all the help with the RAMBO (not ramps) and the stepper configurations. I'll try to find a tutorial or good read for newbies about the Rep and/or marlin firmwares.
I will only have 4-5 days in January to work on this due to work travel but I'll try to get as far as I can with what you have. Hopefully at least to calibration.

Thanks,
David

Marco
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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby Marco » Tue Aug 23, 2016 6:56 pm

jesse wrote:I was able to get the RAMPs 1.4 working with the CNC Shield. It adds four extruders. I was trying to get it working with a Diamond 3 to 1 nozzle but haven't had much time.


Can you please elaborate. I just bought a ramps 1.4 / arduino mega r3 / cnc shield v3 combination.

According to the reprap page: "This outlines the hardware connections required to add an extruder to your existing RAMPS board for cheap."

Can the shield in fact drive 4 additional extruders?

Bought a Diamond Hotend. And i'm very interested in printing in 3 or even 4 different colors.

Eric
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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby Eric » Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:50 pm

Marco wrote:
jesse wrote:I was able to get the RAMPs 1.4 working with the CNC Shield. It adds four extruders. I was trying to get it working with a Diamond 3 to 1 nozzle but haven't had much time.


Can you please elaborate. I just bought a ramps 1.4 / arduino mega r3 / cnc shield v3 combination.

According to the reprap page: "This outlines the hardware connections required to add an extruder to your existing RAMPS board for cheap."

Can the shield in fact drive 4 additional extruders?

Bought a Diamond Hotend. And i'm very interested in printing in 3 or even 4 different colors.


I assume you're referring to this page: http://reprap.org/wiki/Adding_more_extruders

Note that the CNC shield is not actually being used as a shield. All the shield pins are just hanging in mid-air, not connected to anything, and could be clipped off. It's just being used as a convenient board that has sockets for the driver modules. It's got nicely labeled breakout pins on the top that are being used instead of the shield pins.

That page gives good instructions for adding ONE extruder using the cnc shield (in addition to the 5 available on the RAMPS shield). Implementing the other three sockets on the CNC board is an exercise for the user. Once you actually understand how that first one works, the other three should be straightforward. You just have to assign the other spare pins from the aux connectors on the RAMPS board and change the software to make use of them.

Note what you're NOT getting with this setup is additional mosfet outputs or additional thermistor inputs. That doesn't matter for something like the Diamond that has a common heater/thermistor, but for other setups it would be a serious lack.

Marco
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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby Marco » Wed Aug 24, 2016 7:43 pm

Sorry for the lack of clarity, yeah exactly that page. Thank you for the clear answer.

I see. Ok so what i gather is that with RAMPS 1.4 + CNC shield the maximum possibilities are:

HOTBED
DIAMOND
DIAMOND

HOTBED
CHIMERA

HOTBED
DIAMOND
SINGLE

----------------
or without hotbed (maybe for pla):

DIAMOND
CHIMERA

CHIMERA
SINGLE HOTEND

KRAKEN (DONT USE 1 HOTEND)

----------------

By the way, considering the Diamond nozzle, can i print with only 1 filament loaded without any hassle, or would it clog up in the vacant space because it should be used with 3 loaded filaments?

Eric
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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby Eric » Wed Aug 24, 2016 9:09 pm

Yes, that seems right, assuming you hardwire the cooling fan, and don't need software control over it.

Adding more mosfets isn't that hard, btw. Search for "arduino mosfet module" to find ready-made stuff. Or you can make your own: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:22202. You'll need one of the spare PWM pins assigned to it.

The thermistor input circuit isn't that hard to duplicate either, should you need it. It requires one of the spare analog pins on the Arduino.

The limiting factor on all these simple expansions are the unused pins from the Arduino.

I can't help you with operational details on the Diamond. I only run single filament hotends myself.

Marco
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Re: Adding more Extruders to Ramps ?

Postby Marco » Thu Aug 25, 2016 6:15 pm

Thank you, that's very helpful.

I indeed forgot about the lost fan control, great tip how to regain it!


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