Getting started - 3D printed parts and components

A project log for Minimal Pico Vertical Plotter

Building and improving a Raspberry Pi Pico-based, wall-hanging vertical plotter.

andy-piperAndy Piper 10/26/2023 at 20:090 Comments

Back in April 2023, I built a Brachiograph, which set me off down a rabbit hole around pen plotters and mechanical drawing machines. I subsequently purchased an AxiDraw SE/A4 (and then upgraded it with a coreless servo).

I've been wanting to build a vertical plotter for my studio wall for a while, and remembered an article from Ben Everard in HackSpace magazine issue 55 (now available online).

I printed the 3D parts from Ben's Printables page, and ordered the various parts I needed - specifically I needed to order a pair of stepper motors. I already had a Raspberry Pi Pico W - which was an upgrade on the Pico that was used in the original piece, and got me thinking along the lines of updating the project to support wifi uploads for plots further down the line. I also already had a spare servo from the Brachiograph project, and a selection of push buttons.

The 3D prints were pretty straightforward - loaded straight into Bambu Studio and printed on the Bambu X1C in basic PLA. Two mounts for the stepper motors, and a gondola (that Ben had borrowed from elsewhere) for the pen. I realised that I wanted to be able to adjust the pen slightly more comfortably than directly adjusting a screw so I added another part that I found on Printables to make it easier to turn the bolt.