Project Leonard – My Own RepRap
Today I have started a new robotics project, Project Leonard. Leonard is to be my first CNC style automaton based on a RepRap design. I hope that the machine will afford me capability for home 3D printing, engraving, light milling and more. My thinking is that once I have completed the main unit (3D Printer) I will be able to then use it to develop and implement as many interchangeable CNC based attachments that I can think of.
For those of you not in the know:
RepRap is an open-source desktop 3D printer capable of printing plastic objects. Since many parts of RepRap are made from plastic and RepRap can print those parts, RepRap is a self-replicating machine – one that anyone can build given time and materials.
For my build I have opted for the Prusa Mendal variant as it is stated to be:
- It’s much simpler to build it.
- It’s much simpler to modify it.
- It’s much simpler to print it for your friends.
- It’s much simpler to repair it.
For the electronics I have opted for the RepRap Arduino Mega Pololu Shield, or RAMPS (1.4).
The RAMPS official spiel states:
It is designed to fit the entire electronics needed for a RepRap in one small package for low cost. RAMPS interfaces an Arduino MEGA with the powerful Arduino MEGA platform and has plenty room for expansion. The modular design includes plug in stepper drivers and extruder control electronics on an Arduino MEGA shield for easy service, part replacement, upgrade-ability and expansion. Additionally, a number of Arduino expansion boards can be added to the system as long as the main RAMPS board is kept to the top of the stack.
Once complete I aim to use Leonard to develop mini Netduino/Arduino bot kits as inspired by Geir Andersen’s excellent Timing Belt Tank.
Ill add more information as things progress, but for now here are a few usefull shopping links and personal reference for me:
Hardware – http://thingfarm.org/
Electronics – http://reprapworld.com/