Update May 22, 2019:
Hello everyone! After a few months of being really busy here at work, I'm now part-time again, so I'll resume working on 3D models. However, the computer on my other desk, which I had connected to the printer, and had Simplify 3D installed in it, is busted. Power supply blew up on me one day as I pressed the button to turn it on. Hopefully the new power supply will be here next week. In the meantime I'll start reviewing the project, to try and remember where I was at all those months ago.
This is a sneak preview of what will become the Z-X, the major leap up from the Z-19, with a double-size 40x40x20 fan for cooling the hot end heatsink (instead of the 40x40x10 that comes stock), and with maybe one, maybe two 5115 blowers at the top.
Just locating the main items for now...
Alright, I'm going to let you know in rough terms what my plan is for the Z-X.
For starters, it will be a fan-duct housing, just like the Z-19 but with bigger fans: 1 or 2 5115's, haven't decided yet, and a 40x40x20.
But there will be other things added:
- Small LED lights down below, to illuminate the print right under the nozzle.
- A junction box at the back of the printing assembly (over the wheels), for all the wires to connect (LEDs, fans, everything).
- A wire duct elbow bend to the right (in the direction of increasing X numbers).
- A cable chain coupling on the end of the above bend.
- Another cable chain coupling next to the extruder motor, at wheel height, with a cable duct squeezing between the vertical extrusion bar and the Z-axis all-thread rod, from which cables will emerge to go to the control box.
- A cable chain protecting the cables, extending between the two couplings described above.
- A gutter tray (for the chain to rest on) extending from the vertical metal plate the extruder is attached to, to the corresponding metal plate at the right end of the X axis. Note that this tray will move up and down following the Z-movements, of course.
- LED strip lighting on the underside this gutter tray, illuminating the print below.
- A DC input jack at the right end of this tray, to plug a wall-wort type 12V power supply, for the LEDs.
- In the future, an electronics upgrade may follow (PCB gerber, to etch, assemble and install).
And a few other things... ;-)
(July 24, 2018 UPDATE: I have added the extruder motor. This will become a Direct Drive Plus Fang mod. And don't worry about X-axis acceleration and extruder mass; I've got an idea for how to solve that problem too. You'll see...)
When designing the Z-19 I forgot, or neglected, leaving a record of the design process.
I'll try not to repeat that mistake.
So, here's a picture-book historical record...
I wanted my air duct to start rectangular at the outlet of the blower, to match it, and end circular at the business end. So I created the cross sections numbered 1 through 5 in the picture above, all having equal areas, 192 mm^2, exactly.
Then I turned them 90 degrees, and deleted the faces they contained, but not the edges.
Then I bridged between them, to make a tube, and added a surface subdivision modifier, to make the tube smooth. Note the red line there... That's the bezier currve to modify the tube by, to create the curvey tube needed.
Getting the end of the tube to match the blower's outlet window was a challenge. But I finally got it. It took adding more points to the curve to make a straight vertical lead-in; it took placing the undeformed tube snapped on one end to the origin point of the curve; I don't know why, and it took manually twisting the tube by 45 degrees along. Forgot to mention, the round end was too big for the nozzle; I had to go from a rectangle to a 2:1 ellipse...
Close, but not touching the fan, though, the tube you see is actually the inside surface, so there is still the thickness to add there...
Here's a view with the muffin fan removed. Next I have to do the same thing with the other blower...
As I mentioned before, in the Z-19's page, basic aerodynamics is that air flowing through a tube HATES, changes in cross-sectional area. What the majority of fang mods out there do is they expand the cross section right after air comes out of the fans; then they narrow it again to try to produce a jet of air. Might appeal to some people's intuition that expanding the air duct's cross section should make it easier for the air to flow, but that is totally incorrect. A good part of the reason I designed the Z-19 was precisely to rectify this error. When I printed the first Z-19 I tested the hypothesis: I tried blowing air through it, and compared it to blowing air through the OEM fang mod, which I had printed a week earlier. Air flowed MUCH more easily through the Z-19.
Good theory ==> good results.
But, back to the work at hand...
Duplicated my tube and bezier curve, scaled and edited the new bezier, put in the modifier, but the generated tube was in the middle of nowhere. Then I scaled the tube by minus 1 in X, and it went to the right space (between left blower and nozzle), but it got twisted and deformed. Looks like I'm going to have to read the Blender manual...
I'm toying with the idea of throwing in an extruder; make this a direct drive mod + augmented fans. Not sure yet. The long parallel bars are screwdriver access paths, for wheel adjustments. I don't want the Z-X to block access to those screws like the Z-19 did to one of them; so I have cylinders representing access paths to remind myself to keep clear off them; which is why the muffin fan moved left, out of alignment with the hot end.
View from below. BLTouch sensor with bronze tip to the left (bronze being my fancy; I don't have one so I don't know what materials to use); hot end nozzle to the right; main fan mount above, and air duct starting to take shape...
I've had to commit the air ducts. What I mean is, so far I had them as straight tubes modified by a bezier curve, and wanted to keep them that way, so I can easily modify the paths whenever I need to. But the problem is I don't understand how the Curve modifier works in Blender. I kept getting twists and distortions every time I even touch them; so I got tired of all that and I just applied the modifier. Now they are hard polygons. You can see that I'm blowing air tangentially. That's on purpose; you don't want to refrigerate the nozzle, exactly; you want to cool down the extrusion. I'm aiming to create a sort of vortex, to maximize air speed around the nozzle, but minimize air speed AT the nozzle.
As I explained in my other project, the Z-19, I was trying to think of a name for that fan duct mode, and one day it hit me that it sort of resembled a helicopter; so immediately I thought of calling it Apache, but then caught myself, realizing the Creality is a Chinese printer maker, and they would probably not take it very well that someone names a mod for their printers after an American helicopter. So I searched the net for a Chinese helicopter that to me was best resembled by my fan duct design, and that was the Z-9/Z-19 helicopter, manufactured by Harbin. Of the two, I chose Z-19 because the Z-9 was a replica of a Eurocopter model (a licensed replica; --they paid for the right to copy it), but so it was not fully Chinese; but the Z-19, though it resembles the Z-9 externally, it is a helicopter designed in China from the ground up, and by a great Chinese avionics genius and scholar, at that; but I'd have to look up his name.
But now, Z-X was a name given by some people in the West to a secretive new helicopter being designed in China, somewhat related to the Z-9 and Z-10.
Upon setting up this project I did a new search on "Harbin Z-X", to see if there was any new information coming out.
What I found was older info that I missed in my original browsings. What people in the West called the Z-X is really the WZ-10. Secretive, yes, but not that secretive. For example, it is believed to have twin engines, but not known for sure. But it has been photographed, for instance. Here is a page on it with pictures:
I'm keeping the name of this new mod "Z-X", anyhow; --it's more mistifying, liek "X-files"...
But before anybody accuses me of being a communist, or of being pro-war... Nope, my economics ideology is Extreme Center, actually. I believe in a middle path between extreme left and extreme right. Exact mathematical middle, to be exact. Long story; it is MY own economic system I believe in, which I have a book half written about. And I'm not pro-war at all. I love military technologies, strategies and tactics. I like keeping up with news in weapons development. My hope is that they will NEVER need to be used, but you can still be awed at the achievements, and proud of the progress made by any nation on Earth, without necessarily hoping that they will go to war; --or even use their capacities to intimidate and bully other nations.
I feel very proud of China's admirable rise, first as an economic power, and then as a technology leader that it is fast becoming. It is humbling and awe-inspiring. And I recognize Chinese people as culturally superior to us. Yes; as an engineer, I often have to fight hard to make sure things are designed properly. Most management in the West are conformists. "This is good enough...", "That's getting too fancy...", "We can make improvements later...", even while they waste money getting meaningless ISO-9000 approval for documentation systems that are only touched once a year as ISO review is coming up. Managers are more interested in the appearance than in any realities of Quality. Team Spirit is another lip service statue we worship. Creativity remains "a good quality to possess, as long as you don't intend to use it". And we have a social stigma about math. If you are good at math, not to speak of if you like it and enjoy it, then you are considered a "geek", which is a derogatory term without a basis or explanation for why it is derogatory. Chinese culture does not have these problems, and so it IS a superior culture, presently. But that doesn't mean that I like authoritarian governments any more than you do; don't get me wrong.