Thing of the Moment – Rostock

Thing of the Moment is where I find something of interest to print, either useful or fun!

Think of a 3D printer and you will probably think of it having 3 linear axis’ x (left/right) , y (forward/back) and z (up/down) . When you want to move in one direction you move the axis that way. It’s simple and it works – which is why all the 3D printers I have seen operate in that way. But does it have to be that way? The answer would seem to be – no. Step in Rostock.

Up and Down
Like a conventional printer the Rostock has 3 axis – but that is where the similarities stop. On the Rostock the axis all go up and down. No left or right or forward or back. The axis are placed on the corners of a triangle and the print head is attached by rods connected by linear bearings on each axis. With the rods using universal joints they have a wide range of movement. To make the printer produce a straight line all three axis move at varying rates and varying speeds. To update the saying – a video is worth a thousand words:

At a Price
So why is it that not all printers are made this way? Well reading up it seems that geometry calculations needed to move the head even in a simple line are complicated. However this method does reduce the number of parts the printer is made from – about 200. It should be easier to build as well.

And I thought my Huxley was hypnotic to watch…

Links
Thingiverse Page
Documentation

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