Hackaday Prize Entry: MCXY – Mini Laser Cut Aluminum 3D Printer

With the easy availability of cheap and 3D printers from the usual Chinese websites, you might think that there could be little room for another home-made 3D printer project. fortunately, the community of 3D printer making enthusiasts doesn’t see it that way.

[Bobricius] has a rather nice 3D printer design in the works that we think you’ll like. It follows the MakerBot/Ultimaker style of construction in that it is a box rather than a gantry, and it is assembled from CNC-cut aluminum for a sturdy and pleasing effect. Whar sets it apart though is its size, at only 190x190x251mm and with an 80x80x80mm print volume, it’s tiny. You might wonder why that could be an asset, but when you consider that he already has a much larger printer it becomes obvious that something small and portable for quick tiny prints could be an asset.

Unusually for a home-made 3D printer, it has no 3D printed parts, instead, it is laser cut throughout. And also unusually all the CAD work was done in EAGLE, better known for PCB work. It’s a work in progress we’re featuring today because it’s a Hackaday Prize entry, but it looks as though the finished item will be something of a little gem.

Homemade 3D printers can be particularly impressive, for example, we’ve shown you this excellent SLA printer.

11 thoughts on “Hackaday Prize Entry: MCXY – Mini Laser Cut Aluminum 3D Printer

  1. The article title says laser, but the body says CNC cut aluminum.

    The documentation is quiet on the matter – or I failed to spot any such… But some cuts appear to have square corners suggesting laser, so maybe the CNC is a typo.

    Another thing whar sets this article apart is the use of the typo word whar.


    1. water jet’s and such are controlled by cnc (Computer numerical control) as they are just that controllers. just because it says cnc does not mean it is a mill or a lathe. Hope that helps

  2. Box design printers at that size have one major drawback for me: Accessibility to the hot end for maintenance. For an “Ultimaker sized” printer, the box design can still work, because you can move the bed out of the way and gain access to unclog/clean/swap your nozzle without too much problems. Hands and tools have enough room to work in there. But at the size of this mini-printer, it gets A LOT harder to do anything in there. Just look at other small boxed printers like the Fabricator Mini (II) and how hard it is to get to the hot end in there… So, unless the box offers any advantage over an open frame design (heated chamber?) it’s not very practical.

    1. Yes. I’ve build this machine myself: http://daid.eu/~daid/titan/TITAN3.png (20x20x20cm)
      Didn’t work very well (Z axis problems). But I did get some good burns from fiddling with the hotend in a space that small.

      A box like this does offer advantages, it’s very rigid and strong. I can simply stand on that machine with no problems, throw it around, still works fine.

    1. My brother used to work for Winnebago (the RV/motorhome company) running some of their laser cutters. They would often cut 1/2″ thick plate steel. Pretty impressive stuff.

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