Makergear M2

General discussion of 3D printers

Makergear M2

Postby tmccafferty » Mon May 13, 2013 5:12 am

Has anyone been around a Makergear M2 to know how it's print quality and performance stack up against others? Is it hacker friendly or a closed design like Makerbot?
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Re: Makergear M2

Postby BenJackson » Tue May 14, 2013 1:26 am

I have one. I've also got a thing-o-matic and I had a Prusa (printed by the ToM) which I've since disassembled.

I'm not sure what you mean by "hacker friendly". Of course you could modify it or the electronics and firmware yourself, but the design is not published. Even if it were it would be hugely impractical for an individual to produce the mechanical parts for a one-off build. The cutting/bending/machining is much more complex than the 2.x laser parts and people still wait for Bart to produce those. It also uses true linear bearings and a Z stepper with integrated leadscrew, both of which would be more expensive as one-offs than Rick must be paying in quantity.

The quality of the design, the parts, and the fit and finish is excellent. At the time I got mine there was a 10 week lead time (actual time between my order and arrival) and the documentation was not as good as it should be, but that didn't stop me from putting it together in 4-5 hours total. Print quality is very good. Better than my Prusa or ToM, but neither of those is a strong basis for comparison.
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Re: Makergear M2

Postby tmccafferty » Sun May 19, 2013 3:06 am

My main interest by hacker friendly was more regarding the firmware than building a copy. I was wondering if it was some version of Open source such as Marlin. With printers, the hardware is what it is and won't necessarily change. Their mechanical system looks very good. I would be concerned though if I was stuck with today's software forever. A single company can't keep up with the open source community on software releases as things evolve.
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Re: Makergear M2

Postby BenJackson » Thu May 23, 2013 9:28 pm

The electronics are http://reprap.org/wiki/Rambo. That's an open source board that will run all the open source firmware options. I know Rick will offer (or is offering, I'm not keeping track) a commercial host software in partnership with the company that makes it. You can drive it with open source solutions (slic3r, pronterface, repetier, cura, etc) as I do.
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Re: Makergear M2

Postby tmccafferty » Fri May 24, 2013 3:22 am

Great! That's what I was hoping for. I'll leave mine on order . Should be a couple weeks away.
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Re: Makergear M2

Postby Digitalmagic » Sat Jun 01, 2013 1:28 pm

M2 Early bird here.
Very satisfied with it, printing since september 12.
Human has 20 nail ... extruders.
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Re: Makergear M2

Postby tmccafferty » Sun Jun 02, 2013 1:01 am

Great, thanks for the feedback. I have one due about mid-June.
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Re: Makergear M2

Postby Digitalmagic » Sun Jun 02, 2013 3:09 pm

My M2 is to be customized/modded with duastrusion, heat chamber on slide with temp PID, control panel.
I advise you to use 24v power supply, the Rambo Molex connector is heating too much at 12v and pins 5 & 6 are burning, up to creating a resistance.
Human has 20 nail ... extruders.
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Re: Makergear M2

Postby BenJackson » Sun Jun 02, 2013 7:15 pm

That connector was not designed to be used the way it is. It doesn't have enough retention force (in fact it has almost none) and the 12V PSU cable is quite bulky (and had a large ferrite that acts like a fulcrum). It really needs strain relief directly behind that connector. If it melts it's probably due to being backed partway out. I have warned Rick about this.

The other pair of power inputs are driven from about 20V (the other Dell PSU) for motors and the hot end.

If you drive the bed from 24V you're going to blow the polyfuse (you'll double the amperage). I don't know if the FET on RAMBO can handle it (I replaced the one on my RAMPS and used an external fuse when I did something similar to my prusa)
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Re: Makergear M2

Postby Digitalmagic » Sun Jun 02, 2013 8:13 pm

BenJackson wrote:That connector was not designed to be used the way it is...If it melts it's probably due to being backed partway out.

The pins contacts kinda oxydes > resistance > tension > heat and HBP tension drops.
I totally removed the Rambo Molex, replaced with soldered thick pins, with cable soldered to them. I use soft silicone cable multibrin. Both PSU cables are now reduced to a connection box.

BenJackson wrote:If you drive the bed from 24V you're going to blow the polyfuse (you'll double the amperage). I don't know if the FET on RAMBO can handle it (I replaced the one on my RAMPS and used an external fuse when I did something similar to my prusa)

If you go 24v, you have to connect the 2 heater elements of the HBP in serie, to keep the amperage (HBP connector goes Y)? As you did, I removed the polyfuse (14A - 16V) and added a 15A blade fuse in the connection box. The NXP FET for HBP can handle 15A (Specs).

Will tell how my 24v upgrade works (for HBP, steppers and logic).
Human has 20 nail ... extruders.
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