Here is a status update to share with you.
We mentioned that we received the redesigned control board in the last update. Soon after, we received the affiliated boards. Some minor problems related to design, soldering, and layout were found on the boards, but those problems won’t affect testing. Thus we plan to solve them after testing finished.
Both the redesigned control board and affiliated boards were installed on the printer. Laser engraving functions well. CNC can function as well, but the motion shifts after a long time running. We are troubleshooting now. Next, we will test the FDM 3D printing function with the redesigned board. Before we tested the FDM 3D printing function with the development board and the performance was good.
Besides, we plan to finish the cost accounting of the PCB hardware, the optimization of electronic component selection, supplier selection, BOM list V1.0 sorting by the end of June.
The basic version of the printer firmware was implanted on the redesigned board and a series of testing was conducted based on the firmware, including the signal transmission of FDM, Laser, and CNC, the heating, extruding function of FDM, engraving function of laser, carving function of CNC (it is still under debugging.).
Besides, we added sensors on the firmware and wait for testing, including tool head recognition sensor, filament sensor, auto-leveling sensor, door sensor, weight sensor, temperature & humidity sensor. The last sensor, acceleration sensor was added but hasn’t be demarcated yet.
The first round development of closed-loop motor firmware was finished. We are verifying and debugging the firmware, and expect to finish it by next week.
3.LCD & Slicer
We finished first-round debugging of LCD APP by inputting virtual command before joint debugging with the printer.
The slicer consists of 4 parts: FDM, Laser, CNC, and the host computer. We tested and debugged Laser & the host computer along with the printer. These 2 parts were verified as OK. And we are waiting for more final prototypes to test the rest parts: FDM & CNC.
A. The optimized print head was received last week and was installed on the printer. The performance will be verified in the following printing tests;
B. Metal plate base cover has an overheating problem. The solution we tried failed in the testing since adding insulating materials is not effective. We revised the solution accordingly soonest, planing to dissipate heat by enlarging the gap between the heated bed and the base cover, designing ventilation holes on the base cover, and adding silicone pads for insulation. We expect to receive the new base cover and test the effect by next week;
C. There is only 1 final prototype in use for developing & debugging now. We plan to optimize the rest 6 units of the old prototype to meet the requirements as the final prototype so that we can speed up with the debugging. Some old parts on the old prototypes need to be replaced. We plan to finish the optimization of the rest 6 prototypes by early July.
5.Testing & Production
So far, most testings we conducted are for design verification and software verification. Currently, we are working on the test specification for full printer testing. We will start full testing after we optimized the old prototypes.
NPI is sorting the whole BOM list to prepare mass production, including electronics hardware, mechanical parts.
The above is our recent work. We plan to share solid pictures/videos in the next progress update. Welcome to leave your comments below. Thank you for your support as always.