MRRF 17: E3D Introduces Combination Extruder And Hotend

Since the beginning of time, or 2006, the ‘hot glue gun’ part of our CNC hot glue guns have had well-defined parts. The extruder is the bit that pushes plastic through a tube, and the hot end is where all the melty bits are. These are separate devices, even though a shorter path from the extruder to hotend is always better. From Wade’s gear extruder to a nozzle made from an acorn nut, having the hotend and extruder as separate devices has become the standard.

This week at the Midwest RepRap Festival, E3D unveiled the Titan Aero. It’s an extruder and hotend rolled into one that provides better control over the filament, gives every printer more build height, and reduces the mass of a 3D printer toolhead.

 

The aluminum thermal block of the Titan Aero

The Titan Aero, revealed on the E3D blog yesterday, is the next iteration of E3D’s entry into the extruder market. It’s a strange mashup of their very popular V6 hotend, with the heat break coupled tightly to the extruder body. A large fan provides the cooling, and E3D’s thermal simulations show this setup will work well.

The core component of the Aero extruder is a fancy and complex piece of milled aluminum. This is the heatsink for the extruder and provides the shortest path possible between the hobbed gear and the nozzle. This gives the Aero better control over the extrusion of molten plastic and makes this the perfect extruder and hotend setup for hard to print materials.

Combine the Aero with a smaller ‘pancake’ stepper motor, and you have a very small, very light hotend and extruder. This makes it perfect for the small printers we’re so fond of and for printers built for fast acceleration. I can easily see a few end effectors for Delta-style printers built around this extruder in the near future.

E3D’s Volcano nozzle sock

Also at the E3D booth were a few prototypes of nozzle socks. Late last year, E3D released silicone nozzle covers – we’re calling them nozzle socks – for their V6 hotend. These are small silicone covers designed to keep that carbonized crap off of your fancy, shiny hotend. It’s not something that’s necessary for a good print, but it does keep filament from sticking to your hotend, and you get the beautiful semantic satiation of saying the words nozzle socks.

E3D’s other hotend, the Volcano, a massive and powerful hotend designed to push a lot of plastic out fast, did not get its own nozzle sock at the time. Now, the prototypes are out, and the E3D guys expect them to be released, ‘in about a month’.

26 thoughts on “MRRF 17: E3D Introduces Combination Extruder And Hotend

  1. I’ve been trying for two days to get the Titan working with a Volcano/E3Dv6 combination… Jam jam jam jam jam. Yay, i get to spend more money on the Aero upgrade, two days after getting a titan.

      1. Sorry I started this comment thread whining. I just literally spend the last four or more hours trying to get mine working. I hadn’t really looked up a mk8 before… My other printer has that (pretty much exact) configuration just from trial and error. Who knew!

  2. You’re underplaying the value of a nozzle sock way too much! The insulation keeps temps much more consistent, especially with excessive or imperfectly aligned part cooling fans. While not strictly required, they’re such good value it would be foolish not to use them

    1. It’s on Hackaday because Brian is here hanging out at MRRF, and writing about new stuff in 3D printing is why he’s here. It may seem like paid marketing, but what’s he supposed to write about at a 3D printing convention if not new stuff in 3D printing? Besides, it’s not like Brian to NOT write what’s on his mind, even if it’s just what he had for breakfast. Sometimes I think he does it just to troll people in the comments section. :P

          1. Actually, they just installed a new coffee machine yesterday. I walked into the lobby this morning and found a coffee machine completely different from the one I used yesterday.

            With close proximity to a Dairy Queen, easy access to state road 15, and several lines of trees between you and the railroad tracks, the Best Western has everything you could ask for in a midwestern hotel. For vacation or business, the Best Western in Goshen, Indiana has it all.

  3. I think that the E3D stuff is highly overrated.
    They may have good ideas, but the quality doesn’t keep up.
    A friend of mine bought an original E3D v6, but never could make it work, it clogs all the time.
    The same thing as a cheap Chinese clone works like a charm.

    1. no reason not to buy the clones, the e3d is an open source hotend, there is one being produced here in denmark for a third of the price, works like a charm, i have never fiddled with an original e3d but i suspect there isnt much difference.

      1. Isn’t the majority of the difference the low friction and finer machining on the heatbreak? Something you can’t be sure of from a clone. I just bought the heatbreak and nozzle from e3d, and dissected a clone for the other parts. Best of both IMO

        1. Check out this video of a guy who reworks the Cheap chinese clones using a dremel tool, some high speed bits and steel wool. The cheap chinese clones work great after you do some finish machining on them.

      2. +1 for the link.
        I’ve tried clones from china and they have several issues:
        – someone decided to put a PTFE tube in the head break, which IMO defeats the purpose of the “all metal” design. You have to “request” the heat break without PTFE.
        – the heat break is not machined properly and the filament can not enter the hole and jams the extruder
        – they use inferior fan, which does not provide sufficient cooling causing the filament to get soft in the upper path and jam

        Overall I had to spent too much time with a dremel tool to get the heat break to work on the clone and in the end it was still jamming due to poor heat dissipation.

        My original E3D V6 still works fine after two years. Not exactly economical though, so I would welcome a well made clone.

      3. link for all the people, http://3deksperten.dk/3de-printerhoved-j-head-all-metal-v-6-flere-valgmuligheder.html
        i tried finding an english version of the site, but if there are questions their customer support is perfectly fluent in english, the shop is in denmark so check your timezones, the phone country code is +45.

        it does come without extruder and fan and is meant for bowden extruders in the config i bought and linked above.
        i have a davinci printer and this was basically a drop in replacement that fit the bowden extruder it included(with a printed converter to fit the davinci cartridge tool system), the thermocouple is even compatible with the original electronics.

        they do have extruders and a kit with a fan included in the hotend category linked here: http://3deksperten.dk/reservedele/extruder-hotend

        dunno how those prices compare, their filament is also quite cheap and i havent had any issues with the 3kg of abs i have tried, their own brand is the 3DE stuff

        1. Hmm. I don’t seem to be able to find any information indicating that they are produced here in Denmark. But very well thanks for the link. I might grab a heat break form them, as shipping time is considerably faster than aliexpress.

          1. to be fair, neither can i, but they are produced by the danish company 3deksperten, as is their filament, with subcontracting a very real possibility it is hard to tell exactly where they are physically produced, but that goes for pretty much any product in the modern world, the ‘made in x’ moniker has a few workarounds.

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