More Axes for 3D Printers!

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All FDM 3D-printers have problems printing overhangs that have an angle of more than 45 degrees. To solve this problem you have to print a support structure below parts that have too much overhang. But printing the support structure takes a lot of time and wastes printing material, as it is just thrown away afterwards.

I was always unhappy with support material and I wanted to have a better solution for the overhang problem. Recently I had the idea of building a 5 axis 3D printer that might solve that problem.

As a final project in the Fab Academy this year I have developed a fourth axis as an upgrade for a reprap 3D printer. In a first test I was able to achieve an overhang of 60 degrees and I belive that I can push that limit towards something like 80-90 degrees. Afterwards I will experiment some more with the new axis to get a nicer surface finish by tilting the nozzle (print head) to the angle of the surface normal.

You can find some more information about the project on my Fab Academy website at:
http://fabacademy.org/archives/2014/students/fischer.johannes/index.html#final

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