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Building A Quadcopter Using Parts 3D Printed On An ORD Solutions MH3000

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Today's entry is another from our 3D Printer Tech, Mike:

So the first project by me on the blog will be the quadcopter. We'll call this part 1 of x. I've now received most the parts I need to get in the air.

First shipment I got was my flight controller, power distribution board and radio receiver, from Autobotix.

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2nd shipment from hobby king was my motor ESC, motors, lots of props and 1 battery.

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And for my frame I'm starting with the hover ship MHQ2 which can be found on http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:567141. Naturally I printed the parts on an ORD Solutions MH3000 printer (Version 1 of the RoVa3D), and so I had spares I printed a few more, 1 in red PLA (seen in picture), 1 in green PLA, and one in black carbon fiber filament, just for comparison of strength and weight. Results to follow.

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2nd Update

So I've been messing about with my quad parts and frame and did some preliminary assembly to see how things are going to fit. I'm already seeing design changes I want to make to the frame.

First off I'm not crazy about the features of having folding arms, so that's the first change I'll make and should be able to shave a few grams of weight.

2nd the ESC mount to the lower dirty frame (pic 1) and with the various options and physical sizes out there I would like to see more flexibility to accommodate the options‎ so I want to add mount points, and allow for different Heights of the ESC's and at the same time separate the arm mounts from the upper dirty frame to reduce the amount of disassembly if you need to work on ESC or power distribution.

3D Printed Quadcopter Body

3D Printed Quadcopter Propellor

Pic 2 shows the uppers dirty frame, and my marks where I want to move holes. The 4 screws near the middle will move to align with the leg mounts, and I'll add 2 standoff points to maintain rigidity while eliminating 2 screws from the overall build. And the arms need some refining of the motor mount points, I had difficulty lining up screw holes.

Other items I'm looking at is more options for mounting power distribution boards as there are also many options out there.

And to shift away from the quad for a moment I'm going to talk about flight cases.

I've picked up these, 1 from Home Depot which will be for the charging system, batteries, tools, and parts.

The other from Canadian Tire will be for my radio, the more delicate parts, and eventually FPV gear.

I wouldn't mind hearing tips or suggestions for setting up flight cases.

Quadcopter Remote Control

Thanks for reading. 

3rd Update Plus Creating A NEW 3D Printed Robotic Arm

So things have been getting crazy and our printers have been flying around the world faster than santa. but I managed to squeeze some time in to some side projects

The quadcopter is still in the works, and while I figure out a few ideas of the direction I want to go with it and wait for some parts to arrive from my friends at autobotix.ca im shifting gears a bit to bring you this side side project here at thingiverse: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1015238 I found this 3d printable robotic arm, and as luck would have it a few months ago I bought 50 or so of the same servos used in this arm.

So while pondering the quad I printed the parts on my ORD Solutions MH3000 printer, and began assembly

I don't yet have pictures of my build but will get them out soon. With the build process underway, a few of the parts were tricky to print and needed to be run in multiple part batches because the design has low layer times at the top which often creates a situation where too much heat is dumped into a small area causing deformation of the part.

There are multiple strategies to address this issue, from slowing the print down when a layer takes less time to complete, printing multiples of the same part so that one can cool while the others are printing, or adding cooling fans. I'll post some examples later.

So watch for my printed examples of this arm and some build process and my quad project, check out the thingiverse link if you want to print this arm or the instructable Instructables.com for details from the creator of this item.

Progress on The 3D Printed Robotic Arm

So, I've been pretty busy customizing and testing printers for our newest customers, but I managed to squeeze some work in on the robot arm. Got it all printed, and assembled, and it wasn't the easiest, I had to file and grind several parts to make my servos fit. I guess china servos have a fairly lax tolerance.‎ But here it is:

Now I just have to do the electronics and for that I think I'll use this tiny arduino I got from dfrobots, it's called the beetle:

Arduino

And they also have this nice breakout shield called the beetle shield:

The beetle arduino fits on perfectly and handles the power distribution nicely so the arduino needs only worry about the signals:

Together they should easily handle the 4 servos. Then it's onto coding, Hopefully the code from the arms creator will mesh nicely with this arduino, because I'm not a programmer. I'm also never that lucky, but hey that's the great thing about projects like this, it pushes me to learn something and with all my tinkering in mechanics and electronic it's only natural to learn some coding as more and more diy projects blend these 3 technology disciplines.

Thanks for reading and watch for the next update when this thing moves!


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