Mike's gMax XT1.5+ Scratch Build and Questions

Contains all the latest assembly instructions manuals as well as assembly tips.

Mike's gMax XT1.5+ Scratch Build and Questions

Postby motorbikemikexb9 » Thu Oct 13, 2016 5:53 am

Hi Everyone I'm Mike,

I'm new to the forum and to the gCreate world. I have had a Printrbot Simple Metal for about 3 years now. I have printed a ton of stuff on that little printer and love it, but I would like to step up to a large format printer to tackle bigger projects. I have been planning on scratch building my own large format 3D printer for some time now. I was thinking of cannibalizing one of my x-carves and just designing /building my own with most of the existing parts, But a few weeks back I stumbled across the gMax website and decided I want to make something like that instead. After looking deeper at the gMax printer I really fell in love with the machine. It looks very well designed , simple and very well thought out. Buying a turn key gMax is out of my price range so I was thrilled to see that the print files are available for download.

I did a lot of searching for information about the gMax 1.5+ on the forum, the web, and studying photos of both the 1.5 and the 1.5+. I learned a lot about this machine but I still have a handful of questions.

Here is where the questions begin:

#1. I did some poking around and I couldn't find much information on the rest of the machine parts or any drawings for the 1.5+ i.e. extrusion profiles and lengths. plates, brackets etc. Is info for these parts available or is this not really an "open source" machine?

#2 The best I can tell from reading and poking around the forums and looking at the older 1.5 assembly manual, the extrusions are 8020 1515 lite series. Am I correct in guessing that the extrusion lengths called out in the 1.5 assembly manual are the same lengths for the 1.5XT+ minus the Z column extrusions? Additionally what are the lengths of the 2 Z column extrusions?

#3 What is the profile size of the smaller V-slot extrusions for the X and Y carriage's? They are just called out as "thin extrusions" in the 1.5 manual.

#4 gMax parts availability. I would like to buy some of the more complex items from gCreate like the 16x16 heated bed and the aluminum bed assembly. Both are on the website but are listed as sold out. does anyone know if these items will be back in stock are they gone for good?

For now I'm going to get started printing the printable parts for the 1.5+ If someone could help me out with the questions I listed above that would be very much appreciated so I can place an extrusion, bracket and hardware order so I can start making this dream a reality.

Also, I'll keep everyone updated on my build progress here as I get things done.

Thanks, Mike
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Re: Mike's gMax XT1.5+ Scratch Build and Questions

Postby sandman » Sat Oct 15, 2016 5:56 am

Hello motorbikemikexb9 ,

I just completed building my own gMax 1.5XT+ so I can give you some guidance. I have to figure out a lot on my own after many hours of researching. Unfortunately there is not a lot of activity on this forum so you probably won't get much help here. Highluy recommend you join the gMax users Facebook Group for quicker answers. I will share some of what I learned to help you out. I will address each of your questions best I can below.

#1. I did some poking around and I couldn't find much information on the rest of the machine parts or any drawings for the 1.5+ i.e. extrusion profiles and lengths. plates, brackets etc. Is info for these parts available or is this not really an "open source" machine? It is an open-source machine but some parts MUST be purchased direct from gMax for a successful build like Heated Build Plate , Aluminum Y-Carriage, LCD Metal Housing. The extrusions are available from 80/20 and they can cut to them length and tap for you for an extra fee. Well worth it if you don't have the know-how and tools. The size for all the framing components is 1.5" x 1.5" You need to purchase 15 Series Extrusions from 80/20. If you have your own chop saw, you can buy cut-off's at considerable savings from 80/20 on Ebay.

#2 The best I can tell from reading and poking around the forums and looking at the older 1.5 assembly manual, the extrusions are 8020 1515 lite series. Am I correct in guessing that the extrusion lengths called out in the 1.5 assembly manual are the same lengths for the 1.5XT+ minus the Z column extrusions? Additionally what are the lengths of the 2 Z column extrusions?

If you are building the XT+ model, the Z-Axis extrusions are 26" tall. I didn't use the Lite since I wanted the frame to be very rigid, it's worth the extra bucks to get the solid extrusions imo. The ;lengths listed in the build manual are correct. Make sure you are using the 1.5+ build manual. Lots of the info in the build manual is outdated so you have to do your homework but that was half the fun for me was the hunt.

#3 What is the profile size of the smaller V-slot extrusions for the X and Y carriage's? They are just called out as "thin extrusions" in the 1.5 manual. The Smaller extrusions are your Linear V-Rails which can be purchased from http://openbuildspartstore.com. You need to order 20mm x 20mm 1500 mm to have enough for the two Y Axis rails and one X-Axis Rail. You will have to cut these yourself. http://openbuildspartstore.com/v-slot-linear-rail/ gCreate sources lots of the gMax parts from Open Builds Parts Store so you can get a lot of your needed components there.


#4 gMax parts availability. I would like to buy some of the more complex items from gCreate like the 16x16 heated bed and the aluminum bed assembly. Both are on the website but are listed as sold out. does anyone know if these items will be back in stock are they gone for good?
You need to contact gCreate about the parts. It took almost a week to get replies to all my inquiries via email since they are very busy but be patient. They don't move fast as they are a small operation. Quite a few of the parts they told me they won't be able to sell directly because they needed them in-house to build customer's printers to meet demand but things may have changed in the months since I bought my items. I was able to purchase the Heat Bed, Aluminum Y-Carriage, LED Casing, Electronics case but I had to ask since some of the parts are not available through their online store due. Be prepared for a long process, it took me almost 5 months to complete my gMax printer. I had to do hours and hours of searching and inquiring to fill in the blanks left out of the gMax build manual. To help on a little tid-bit, gCreate uses this exact fan for the extruder: https://www.digikey.com/product-detail/ ... ND/1021167 so you'll need to order one.
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Re: Mike's gMax XT1.5+ Scratch Build and Questions

Postby motorbikemikexb9 » Sat Oct 15, 2016 6:26 am

Thanks for the help Sandman. I kind of figured you'd be the one to help me out.

time start ordering and printing parts. I'll post pics as I start building.

Thanks, Again.
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Re: Mike's gMax XT1.5+ Scratch Build and Questions

Postby sandman » Sat Oct 15, 2016 7:06 am

Another great place to shop for parts is http://www.mcmaster.com/# . They offer great prices on all the screws, bolts, and odds and ends needed for the printer. Gathering the parts was a long process. I made up a spreadsheet at first and would go through the build manual and count how many of each screw, bolt, and nut was needed. I wished I could send you my spreadsheet but my laptop I used when gathering all the info to build the printer died and I lost all of my files. I can go from memory on most of it though.

Here's some stuff to help you. You'll need the following

GT2 Timing Belt..Order at least 10 feet here: http://openbuildspartstore.com/gt2-2mm-timing-belt/

gMax changed the lead screws to 8mm ACME Rods for Z axis, you'll need 2 x 1000 mm length: http://openbuildspartstore.com/8mm-metr ... ad-screw//

gCreate uses these NEMA 17 Stepper Motors for all axis and extruders: http://openbuildspartstore.com/nema-17-stepper-motor/

You will need 2 of these Anti-Backlash Nut Blocks for the Z-Axis: http://openbuildspartstore.com/anti-bac ... ead-screw/

You will also need 2 of these: http://openbuildspartstore.com/anti-bac ... ead-screw/

you will need to order two of these used on the X and Y Axis: http://openbuildspartstore.com/smooth-i ... wheel-kit/

I will list more as I think of the parts...
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Re: Mike's gMax XT1.5+ Scratch Build and Questions

Postby sandman » Sat Oct 15, 2016 7:17 am

You will also need two RJ45 Breakout boards: http://store.gravitech.us/rjbrbo.html

1 BLTouch for Auto Leveling Bed: http://www.ebay.com/itm/201548081668?_t ... EBIDX%3AIT

1 Keystudio Printer Control Board: http://www.ebay.com/itm/131679775625?_t ... EBIDX%3AIT

You will need 2 Mechanical Endstop Switches: http://www.ebay.com/itm/5pcs-Mechanical ... 51ddfb6b2b

More to come......
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Re: Mike's gMax XT1.5+ Scratch Build and Questions

Postby Equinox1986 » Mon Dec 12, 2016 11:27 pm

Hey Mike,

Great Questions!

I was running into similar issues with my build.

Was wondering if you found anything on GCreate or otherwise to use for the Z-axis angled plates.

Thanks!

Steve
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