”a printer that prints itself”
Probe is an adjustable and transportable frame for the large-scale 3D-printer Hangprinter, which is developed by Torbjørn Ludvigsen. The Hangprinter project is based on the RepRap movement initiated in 2004 by Dr. Adrian Bowyer at the University of Bath, UK.
The frame consists of square aluminium profiles, 3D-printed joints, a wooden base plate, a 100 cm diameter glass print surface and a handful of screws and nuts. It is designed to be fabricated on a common RepRap printer and with some basic tools.
Virtually anything can be produced by printing. It’s an efficient method, especially for personalized products that would otherwise need a lot of hand work. Printing makes the construction of more challenging pieces possible, like items that would normally be difficult to remove from their mold, or items with detailed inner walls.
At the moment, the size of the printed projects is limited by the printer’s frame and base, whose diameter is 100 cm. Up until now, the highest printed piece was 75 cm tall. The ready pieces possibly need some reworking, like honing, puttying, or painting.
For printing material, we use bio-degradable PLA, which is one of the most common printing filaments currently. PLA can be produced using raw materials such as corn starch and sugar cane.
Future changes to the printer:
1. Heated printer base that makes the use of other printing materials possible.
2. An automatically changeable printer head, that allows mixing different materials and colors.
3. High printing quality, so that there’s no need for any reworking after printing.
4. Print head for shredded waste plastic