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Anet A8 Dual Bowden Conversion

by 8SquareFeet Aug 23, 2016
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Hey! thanks for inspiring me to build my own dual extruder.
I have everything set up but i have one final problem: I used the rrd fan extender for the ramps but i cant get the print fan working! But the extruder fans are working could you help me?And it is not a problem with the software because the little led is glowing.

Does this happen to match offset of the 2018 / 2019 dual extruder? (It looks closer together than the stock ANet extruder mounts) I'm asking to know if I need to update offsets or if I can use the original X-Offset in the stock firmware. Thanks :D

Hi, can you add the sketchup files? I'm trying to make a similar mod to my anet. Thanks!

Do you have to buy the linear bearings separately? If not, how to I take off the aluminum "shielding" thing that covers the linear bearings?

2 extruders ??? It's awesome. Does it work perfectly? and you have the file Configuration.h (marlin?)

Thanks for your answer

Do you know how to set up cura 2.6 with this. also,which one is hotend 0 and which one is hotend 1.
Lastly,how can I set up a x chain for this.

In order to set up via Cura, you have to modify a copy of a dual-extrusion printer's json file within Cura's AppData folder. The process is technically involved, and I never got it to work well. As far as which hotend is which, that comes down to how you wire the heaters/thermistors, and how you configure your printer firmware. Obviously, this isn't compatible with the control board which ships with the Anet A8, and requires something like a RAMPS setup (I use a Rumba board with support for up to 3 extruders, running Marlin.)

you say you have a rumba board? i was wondering if you could help me getting my rumba board setup please. any info advice tips links anything would be greatly appreciated

First off, you're going to have to get a dupont style connector kit and crimpers, and if the rumba board you get doesn't come with them, the stepper drivers you wish to use. I went with a set of DRV8825s for all steppers, configuring X, Y, and E1/E2 as the highest microstepping setting available. It's really a matter of wiring and crimping on the new connectors, really. I'd have to say the hardest part of that was re-wiring my autolevel sensor to work.

Take note of the stepper motor color pairs, and take care to wire them correctly so they work right- there are videos online on how to do this if you're confused at all. After all is set up, you WILL have to tune the current of the stepper drivers, this requires a basic multimeter or voltmeter. For the Z steppers, I have one of them crimped into the connector, the other uses the on-board screw terminals, both motors run in parallel.

As far as the software, it's fairly easy to get Marlin up and going, and very similar to flashing your Anet board to Skynet; Both use the Arduino IDE, but for the Rumba, you will want to use default marlin source, not Skynet. Most of the configuration is straightforward, as there is detailed comments in the file(s) required, where you simply select the options which fit the printer. For further information, I believe I referenced to a Rumba-specific configuration page online.

Overall, it's a hell of a project, and not one which will be done particularly quickly or easily, as you have to recrimp all the connections and then go and configure software, re-tune everything, and get used to the changes. I'd say it's worth it for microstepping, alone, to quiet your printer down. If you're doing it for dual extrusion, I'd say you're best off looking into a mixing (Diamond) head, as the offset of the two print nozzles is not always exact, and oozing is a pain to deal with. Furthermore, it's a hassle to make a custom dual-extruder profile in either Cura or S3D. It does work, but the results I got were mediocre at best, wasting a lot of filament, taking a lot longer to print, and then dealing with the cleanup of the print.

I have most the parts printed, My second e3d has arrived. Im just waiting on my other extruder.

Does this carriage use any specific offsets for the extruders at all. I went searching through your files and couldn't see a reference to the offsets. Sorry for the noob question, i'm still learning and thought I may need some offsets.

This is a great question, would also like the answer!

Ive messed around and its not perfect but:
Hotend 0 has no offset.
At the moment I have hotend 1 at x 32.50 and y -0.06. Its still off a bit.

I would have perfected it but I started a new job so I my life has been a bit hectic at the moment.

I set the offset using Gcode - M218 T1 X 32.50 Y-0.06, then using the M500 so save to EEPROM.

As soon as life settles down Ill be re-visiting it, unless anyone gets a better offset before I look at it :-).

How do you set the slicer offsets

in cura
I currently have this thing working but I can print either from extruder 1 or 2. I cannot print with them simutanously

It seems like ages since I done this...

I set the offset using M218 T1 X 32.50 y-0.06 and then m500 to save the settings.

Unfortunately I no longer have this setup as one of the clone E3d v6 I bought decided to clog and jam and I never replaced it due to having no time.

I assume you set the marlin config to include 2 hotends. What model are you using to test it with?
I printed this: https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:533814 to calibrate my offsets.

Dual Extruder Calibration Print
by walter

Are the cold-end fans 40mm?

Please post back side again =) Also i can't understand how to mount it...

I've re-upped the photo of my x carriage:
*update I've added the photo to my remix of this thing:


Anet A8 Dual Bowden with Autolevel (18mm inductive)
by dhw666

Thanks and LOL, that's ok to mount all using cable tie?

Yeh its quite strong and the design is lightweight anyway..

How is the cooling performance?

print fan or filament?

The one that cools the printed filament. Not the two extruder ones.

Its the same as the stock A8 one, where it only cools from the front.
Idealy you would need to adapt one of the 360 degrees ones.

Any chance you could post original files so I can easily add a mount for the 18mm cap autolevel sensor... Also can I see the back end the Dropbox link is dead, also is the Marlin software setting for dual extruder fairly straightforward. Sorry to add so much at once. the mk8 Amazon link is dead so I am assuming that any mk8 is fine.. have ty tried any flex material is the one concern I have with a Bowden set up.

I've modified the backplate to hold an 18mm induction sensor see here:

Any mk8 should be fine but the ones with the handle part like this will be easier to use:

With regards to flex.. the only issue would be at the cold end part where you have gaps above and below the motor gear (where the filament is pinched). I've seen on thingiverse, slot in parts that should overcome this problem.

Anet A8 Dual Bowden with Autolevel (18mm inductive)
by dhw666

I'm planning on doing this upgrade but I'm afraid I grab the wrong RAMPS board or any other components. Can you give me the links of the products you bought?

Thanks in advanced.

as i am from germany, i bought this one, any similar should work .. https://www.amazon.de/gp/product/B0111ZSS2O/

and i'm curious to the software part. where do i get the firmware for the arduino and where do i get a filament loading stepper motor?

and thanks for the help webmin i've found the same kit somewhere else.

just look for marlin firmware or skynet (if you use autoleveling) - as it would be easier in the beginning i suggest using marlin as there are just a little modifications to do

Can I still use auto bed leveling?

I am curious are you still using the stock Anet A8 board?
Where did you wire in the new stepper and hot-end?

No, you need to use ramps or similar. It´s not possible to use dual extruder with the original anet board.

Can you please post some images of the back side ? I can´t imagine how the axis part should hold. There is no backsinde or is it needet to print twice ?

Comments deleted.

Uhttp://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2236501se 3mm cable ties to hold the LM8UU Linear bearings. I used 2x1.5mm instead as that's what i had already: https://www.dropbox.com/s/9gsajii4jym92pd/DSC_3014%20-%20Copy.JPG?dl=0

I think you can take the bearing out of the metal housing on the existing ones but I just bought new ones as you need 4.

Anet A8 Dual Bowden with Autolevel (18mm inductive)
by dhw666

Please post back side again =) Also i can't understand how to mount it...

"I have converted to a RAMPS setup, so I no longer use that display."

Comments deleted.

I am also looking to convert to ramps.. anything on your experience worth noting?

Comments deleted.

Thanks for sharing your upgrade.. this is something i've been wanting to do for a while.
Have you tried using PVA filament for supports with this setup??
Also what linear bearings did you use for the carriage? (there's no photos of the back of the carriage but from what i can see it doesn't look like you used the original sc8uu box sliders..)

For the comments below I'm pretty sure he's using a ramps v1.4 board

u modified the motherboard and the programs?

I have the same printer, so what control board do you have so you can have 2 extruders?

a ramps board will have two extruder connectors and also something like an mks gen L board will have that too

but as you made the connections to the board?