Get A Better Look At E3D’s Tool-changing 3D Printer Kit

Want a closer, in-depth look at E3D’s motion system and tool-changing platform? [Kubi Sertoglu] shared his impressions after building and testing the system, which comes in the form of a parts bundle direct from E3D costing just under $3000 USD. The project took [Kubi] about 15 hours and is essentially built from the ground up. The system is definitely aimed at engineers and advanced prosumers, but [Kubi] found it to be of remarkable quality, and is highly pleased with the end results.

E3D Motion system and toolchanger, with four extruders

We first saw E3D’s design announced back in 2018, when they showed their working ideas for a system that combined motion control and a toolchanger design. The system [Kubi] built uses four 3D printing extruders for multi-material prints, but in theory the toolheads could just as easily be things like grippers, lasers, or engravers instead of 3D printing extruders.

One challenge with tool changing is ensuring tools mount and locate back into the same place, time after time. After all, a few fractions of a millimeter difference in the position of a print head would spell disaster for the quality of most prints. Kinematic couplings are the answer to being sure something goes back where it should, but knowing the solution is only half the battle. Implementation still requires plenty of clever design and hard engineering work, which is what E3D has delivered.

Want a closer look at the nitty-gritty? Check out E3D’s GitHub repository for all the details on their toolchanger and motion system.

4 thoughts on “Get A Better Look At E3D’s Tool-changing 3D Printer Kit

  1. You usually do a good job of linking to related articles. In this case, kinematic couplings, jubilee tool changer and other tool changers would be good, to avoid this looking like an advert for E3D.

    1. As it looks like they have documented and opensourced the entire thing I wouldn’t complain. Its an advert for a ‘free’ product – You don’t have to have anything to do with E3D if you don’t want to, and can still have the device…

      1. I suppose to keep the comments section excellent, I should clarify that my initial comment is not a complaint. I was trying to highlight the value I find in the Hackaday convention of linking to related articles at the end of most of their articles. When I see an article now which doesn’t do this, especially when it is so favourable towards the subject, I feel it has lost something of the balance that linking to alternatives can achieve. My comment was certainly not complaining about E3D’s efforts either.

  2. I remember that presentation at MRRF. You could hear a pin drop in the room as everyone strained to hear it. The platform was meant to be a proof of concept to show what could be done, but as these things go, it became more than that. I’ve never been a customer of E3D, but I do appreciate the level of mechanical engineering that went into that design–and I assume the rest of their products. It’s a refreshing change from the normal “I tried some stuff and finally got something that is good engough. No idea who this one works…” level of design common to the rest of the hobby 3D printing industry.

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