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ANET A8 exoskeleton

by aeropic Jul 11, 2017
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Thanks for the great design!

As I said in the post a make, I created a couple of quick spacers for the motherboard and the LCD because I didn't have long enough screws, so I took the suggestion directly from here. They were printed tight and then threaded to accept 2 bolts from both sides, so that long bolts are no longer needed.

That, indeed is a good way to solve the long screws issue.

Yeah I have a pretty good collections of M3/M4 screws but here I needed some extra long ones and unfortunately had only a few, not enough for the entire process, so I preferred to quickly design a simple spacer with the correct dimensions and a tight hole that I postprocessed with an M3 threading tool. 5 minutes to solve everything in an easy way, thanks to your previous comment that I found pretty helpful!

Hi there - stumbled across your carbon stiffeners - you've also got a bracket at the top of the junction between the vertical plates and the horizontal top beam - is that one of yours? - it actually uses the bolts on the frame to hold it in - which is better than some of the other brackets I've found on here..
thanks for your suggestions, I'll be adding to the printer I've almost finished assembling.

The pièces in Y shape are not really efficient. I printed those first and after having been disapointed, I designed the exoskeletons set.
I kept the Y more by laziness to remove them !

Do you still work on 1/4" rod version? I printed the Hulk brace from Leo but yours looks more easier to implement.

Right now, i don't... But if there is a need, it would be very easy to do

Just a note for the next makes, you will need:
. 3x M3x35 (on the top and middle left)
. 5x M3x25 or M3x30 (on the bottom and middle right)
. 8x M3 nuts

Hi aeropic,

I like the look of your exoskeleton designs and may as way go all the way with your ideas!

Can you tell me where I can find the STL for the diamond-shaped upper support pictured in your third and fourth photos?

Or is it not required?



Hi Matthew,

Search for ANET A8 T brace on thingiver, but franckly speaking they are not needed if you install the exoskeleton. I printed them first before the exoskeleton and they were not stiffening the frame enough... I kept them just before they were installed ;-)

Excellent. Thanks for the quick response. I’ll skip adding the T brace then.



Hi aeropic, would be possible an option to 6.3mm (1/4") rod? In my region, it is the most affordable rod, other options are like 6x times more expensive. I tried to just enlarge the holes, but it messes with the bolt holes. Thanks

Sure, it will be quite easy to modify the openscad script.. But I'm not at home , leave me few days ...

Oh! Thank you for your attention, but I accidentally found a 6mm aluminum rod in a store for an affordable price. Soon, I'll post my make.

Cool, I had not started ...
You will not regreat the aluminium rods, they will do the job!

How much of an improvement will this be for the frame? Wobble is gone and you can print faster now correct? Do you still need frame braces for the belt tensions?

After those " exoskeletons" mods the printer becomes rock solid. You can print faster for a given print quality.
Wobble needs to be trimmed at the level of the motor mounts (they must be correctly aligned).

If you print the Y exoskeleton, you'll indeed do not need any other brace as no effort is applied to the acrylic parts. Should you start with one mod, do this one !
The X belt tensioner I use can be found in my collection of mods for ANET

Hey would you recommend carbon fiber tubes or carbon fiber rods? If tubes what ID? Found them both pretty cheap.

Hi, no problem both will do the job.
Inner diam is not that important as the stiffness is given by the external fibers.
Buy the cheapest !

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Hi great design, Would there be any chance you could make a version for 8mm rods? Please

Technically it would be quite easy as the rod radius is a parameter of the openscad source files. But 8mm is a too big diameter for two main reasons:

  • the bottom nut (close to the z motor) must be blocked into position by 2 bolts each of them locaded on the two sides of the rod and they shall enter the hole in the acrylic plate. i think the hole is too small for 3+8+3 + some margins = 14 mm and more ...
  • I wanted a middle junction with some plastic around the rods, thus the design alloows , for 6 mm rods, to get 1mm at the thinnest part. There again we do not get plenty of margins, the Z carriages, the X carriage come very close to the actual design, I don't think it would work with 8 mm

Thanks for getting back to me, I only asked as i have some 8mm rods but will have to get some 5mm ones, thanks again

If you can find 6 mm, that would be optimal (my configuration) and should you have some spare rod, you might be interested as well to use it in this thing : https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2456797 ;-)

ANET A8 Y frame "exoskeleton"
by aeropic

My pleasure !
If you build one, please post a picture, I'd like to see other colors ;-)
And if you don't find 6 mm but only 5, it would be imediate to adapt the Y exoskeleton pieces to this !

sorry to say this, after i tried this i cannot approve this.
the rods are way to hard to push in or will getting lose over time -> they need a mechanical interlock
also the rods need to be over 600mm what is hard to get or expensive.
also the installation made very big problems (e.g. the need of very long m3 screws)

but i like the idea to enforce this axis and will create a own idea for it later

If the rods are too tight, just use a drill tip to enlarge the hole. Both nuts at the extremity of the rods are properly locked in place. if you look carefully the design, the holes in the nuts are open so that a small part of the rod is protuding from the nut. Once the nut screwed in place the rod cannot move anymore.

The middle junction can be left lose its function is just to avoid lateral motion. And once in position you may just deposit one drop of CA glue ...

You're right for the length of the M3 nuts. The longest are at the LCD screen level and on the left middle junction. If you don't get M3 threaded rod, you may just print a tube spacer and use is as a nut with a screw at each extremity...

The length of the rods is 41.5 cm not 60 ! Which means that you just need les than one meter of rod. This is standard dimensions, please go to a kite shop to get carbon tubes or you can buy steel rods...

Whould it be possible to get a costumized version for other rod diameters

Yes sure, it is really simple to modify the openscad script...
Which diameter ?

5mm would be helpful

Just go to the file section and collect the zip file, you'll get all the stl you need...

there is 2times one symetrical part and the left and right junction is there only one times

oops... to fast with the zip ;-)
it is fixed (I hope)

now it is fine, thanks again ^^

wow thank you man!

you're welcome.
Please, post a picture when made.

Not sure why your post keeps getting removed from the Anet group! Looks good to me!

again blacklisted from the anet group... I do not understand how facebook is working !!!

Ya not sure why. do they say why?

No, there are no explanations. I suspect maybe this comes from the fact I logged with a pseudo, maybe they want a real name ?

I love it to see designs of people who understand mechanics. Simple, elegant and right on the point. Thumbs up.

I love your comment !

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The idea is good, but the rods collide with the printing space.

However, thank you for the like !

No, they do not collide with the printing area, unless you want to print outside the bed surface ( a kind of very big vase or conical piece ?).

This is the reason why I attached the rods to the uppers screws of the LCD... and outside the crews to win some millimeters !
If you look closely your printer, the Z motion is limited by the Z axis nuts. They collide with the upper plates of the frame.
Once in this upper position, the extruder is far bellow by more than 10 cm and it can reach the whole bed width ...

The perspective of the picture is somewhat misleading, but you can trust me, the design preserves the whole printing volume which is part of its beauty ;-)

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