Monday, 28 May 2012

Clean up on isle 3

I decided to clean the "car wash" the part that wipes and stows the print head when not printing. The manual says remove and clean under the tap. I tried to remove it but it seemed that the entire printer section would need to be removed too. The manual does not say how to do this so I started unscrewing things and convinced myself that four bolts holding two plastic upright brackets would need to be removed. Turns out this was not the case, the print assembly can be lifted out of said brackets indeed you can see them in the photos below. But once out I could really just how dirty everything else was, not just coated in powder but hardened powder. I decided to remove the gantry, this was not very easy to do but was possible. I will try to document it when I put it back together to help others.

So here is the gantry with the print section removed, you can see a slot that it prints through and also the slot where the powder roller/spreader sits.

And another view, on the left is the powder chamber which is currently lowered and on the right the build area and the power chute which is connected to a vacuum system. I don't like the idea of the vacuum system because it is noisy, it would be better with a gravity system with just a slight negative air pressure IMHO, but what do I know at this stage.

After removing a lot of screws, some of which were a nightmare to access (because I did it in the wrong order) I was able to remove the gantry, a few more screws and the white plastic part also came off, this part is shaped to go through a slot in the back of the machine formed from two pieces of plastic cable braid that act as a curtain and prevent powder from going into the back of the machine where the electrics reside.

And the underside complete with caked on powder. The whole lot will get a good wash and the bearings an oil. Should look good as new.

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