Impatience lead to a bad first print

A project log for MetalArc: A Low-Cost Metal 3D Printer

A 3D printer based on a MIG welder

roboteursroboteurs 11/14/2016 at 16:370 Comments

The first print I did with this printer was just bad. And the reason is I couldn't wait for the shielding gas to show up. From the beginning I intended to use the smallest welding wire possible (0.020). But I didn't have that on hand or the shielding gas when I go the machine together for the first time.

In my impatience I decided to try a print using (0.035) MIG Flux-core wire. That was a mistake.

The current required to melt this wire and deposit a the rate I needed kept tripping the breaker. Also my feed rates where to high so the weld kept skipping ahead of its self.

As you can see it was just a mess.

Another lesson learned from this experiment is that 14Ga steel is not thick enough to print on to. The plate warped like crazy. I have done some work on the very big and fancy 1.5 Million dollar machines and they print onto a 1 inch steel plate to prevent warpage. I guess I need a thicker plate :S