The New Matter Mod-t
The Mod-t printer was developed some time last year and funded on the Indiegogo crowd funding website. The printers main feature is the new rack and pinion design that moves the print bed in the X and Y directions. The has a nice clean look about it and has pretty acrylic cover that helps quiet it down and makes it more consumer friendly in the home enviroment. Here is a list of some of the features:
- MOD-t Retail Price: $ 399
- Plug-and-play operable
- Built-in Wi-Fi for easy connection to the New Matter Store
- Prints with safe, environmentally-friendly Polylactic Acid (PLA) plastic
- Print speeds of 80mm per second
- Layer resolution selectable at 0.1, 0.2, 0.3, and 0.4mm
- Maximum object size of 6 x 4 x 5 inches
- Perfect for DIY makers, families, educators, and many others
I had backed the printer and had just received it in October 2015 and took it by Jetguy’s house to have a peek inside. The printer uses DC Servos with Optical encoder positioning feedback and looks to be geared at maybe 2:1 on the X and Y. The board seems to be setup to measure the current of the DC Servos and is how it determines when the bed hits the limits and when the Z is homed. The main board uses the STM32F106 micro processor and the CC3100 wifi module.
The extruder setup contains a very large squirrel cage fan that cools the extruder cold end and blows down to cool the printed part. The fan and chambers are sealed to keep the air blowing in the right direction. The extruder is also DC Servo controlled but looks to have more gears for further reduction. The heater block also incorporates an over temperature disconnect which is a plus on the safety side. The Z motor and gear is decoupled so if there is any z wobble it won’t be transfered to the extruder. The Z threaded rod is stationary and the motor turns a gear which turns the nut that is threaded onto the rod. The Z smooth rods are a nice 10mm diameter and is setup with a master and follower bearing setup (two bearings on one side and one bearing on the other). This helps keep it from being over constrained.
The Z is auto homed and calibrated at the beginning of every print. It first homes the bed to the center by moving it to one edge then the other after which it can determine where center is. The Z stage is then run down until the nozzle hits the bed (detected by the servo current feedback). This gets the nozzle close but it then moves up a few inches after which the nozzle is heated slightly (I don’t think it reaches the full temperature until after it homes) then moves to about 2-3mm from the bed. At this point the bed will start moving left to right about 2 inches as the nozzle is slowly moved down. It detects when the nozzle is on the bed by monitoring the changes in current on the X DC Servo (caused by the nozzle putting pressure on the bed).
For more teardown photos see my Flickr page: NewMatter Mod-t Teardown