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Is it possible to print chocolate or food using Ramps 1.4? I have seen printers that are capable of printing food. But I am not sure if there is one that is open source. Does any of you have any experience printing food? Thanks

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  • $\begingroup$ chocolate in "normal" form once melted loses temper. It's difficult, perhaps impossible to re-establish the temper of the chocolate once it's been extruded. Work-arounds exist with compensating mixtures, but that removes the pure chocolate aspect from the food product. Not an answer, hence the comment, for consideration. $\endgroup$ – fred_dot_u Feb 2 '18 at 23:41
  • $\begingroup$ I use an open source and very cheap model: you probably have all the parts you need to build it right in your kitchen too! 3.bp.blogspot.com/-pJXV-mEySlE/VPaNe-HaR4I/AAAAAAAAGUw/… ;) $\endgroup$ – mac Feb 3 '18 at 4:47
  • $\begingroup$ It's somewhat possible to reduce/mitigate/eliminate the loss of temper by not overheating when melting. While not easy for the average person, a machine might just manage it (or a more complex machine could perhaps re-temper before printing.) (see scene 6 here: goodeatsfanpage.com/season8/chocolate/chocolate_transcript.htm) $\endgroup$ – Ecnerwal Feb 4 '18 at 21:31
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The controller interface board (that being the RAMPS 1.4 you ask about) should be up to the task and not care WHAT it's printing. You'll probably be creating your own hotend design to pull this off, and if you make it open source, then it will be. I'm envisioning stainless steel, careful temperature control, lots of mixing, perhaps some sort of screw-feed extruder (or batch-fed plunger with the melting and filling under close control on a separate machine, then the hotend on the printer doing a fine and careful job keeping the temperature right at 91.7 °F around the plunger.) You'll have design work to do on the mechanical hardware side, but the electronics and software should be easily adapted.

Read up some on food equipment design to make sure whatever you come up with can be cleaned appropriately for food handling, and uses only food-safe contact surfaces and lubricants/bearings.

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