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I just received an old 3D printer from one of my school teachers. I have no idea whatsoever as to which brand it is, no instruction manual attached to it, or any other info about it.

How can I find some information about it?

Some links would be very useful. Remember when giving advice that I know nothing about 3D printers.

This is the printer:

Backside Printer as seen from the back

Front Printer as seen from the front

The X-axis stepper The X-axis stepper

The electronics board The electronics board

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    $\begingroup$ Welcome to 3D Printing! Could you provide some pictures of the printer? $\endgroup$ – Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 Jul 4 '18 at 17:02
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    $\begingroup$ Hi Craciun Alex and welcome to SE 3D Printing! You will need to provide more information, and as @Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 says, at least a few photos, including some close ups of various parts (the motors, endstops, extruder, hotend, the control board, user interface, etc.). Any serial numbers on parts (i.e. the stepper motors, extruder, power supply)? The more information that you provide, the accurate the answer... $\endgroup$ – Greenonline Jul 4 '18 at 18:26
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    $\begingroup$ Ok, thanks you for the prompt response. Today is pretty late, but I will be sure to come back tomorrow with a lot more details. $\endgroup$ – Craciun Alex Jul 4 '18 at 18:50
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    $\begingroup$ Hello! (again) I've uploaded some images of the printer and parts that came with it. Here is the link link $\endgroup$ – Craciun Alex Jul 5 '18 at 9:57
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    $\begingroup$ Hi, and welcome to the SE 3D Printing! It is not a custom to give links as these may not last for eternity (it is a pity that links die over time, it's the way of the internet...therefore the photo's are now embedded). Also, SE sites are driven by Questions and Answers that should contain the appropriate information, also for others. I've added an answer with the printer type so that you can find the links yourself. Good luck in getting it to work! And be prepared for a time consuming hobby! :) $\endgroup$ – 0scar Jul 5 '18 at 13:25
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This is an old 3D printer that looks a lot like the Mendel or a simpler remix of the Mendel (the Prusa Mendel). I think this is a Mendel you have obtained, it was released in October 2009.

This is a printer type from the early days, a lot about these printers can be found now that you know the type. These old types can be constructed from printed parts and hardware store materials. Nowadays, metals like steel and aluminium sheets or aluminium profiles are more commonly used.

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Here are some further details on:

  • The control board, and;
  • The stepper motors

Control board

The electronics board has this marking:

EJE Electronics Gubbel Engineering

EJE Electronics Gubbels Engineering

The serial number is 0070-003

According to this site Xinchejian First Mendel V2 Reprap the board is:

Gen6 Electronics, with AT Mega 644p processor (PCB EJE Electronics, Gubbels Engineering - mendel-parts.com)

It seems to be this board (the serial numbers match):

Gen6_PCB_final_batch

Information on this board can be found here: Generation 6 Electronics:

Generation 6, or Gen6, can be described as a dedicated, Plug-&-Play, single board solution for FFF/FDM 3D Printers. It is designed to be professionally manufactured, with many small surface mount components, as opposed to Generation 7 which is designed to be printed on a Mendel(among other design goals).

Another major difference with Gen6 electronics is that they use Texas Instruments DRV8811 chips to drive the stepper motors. This means they require firmware modifications from the normal Polulu-based electronics which use Allegro A4983 chips.

It goes on to say:

Benefits of this Design

  • These electronics are a single board solution, so you don't need all those cables and one thick sheet and 4 reprap parts less.
  • However, the thick sheet does add a fair amount of rigidity. @$@#?? the bottom thick sheet (big one) doesnt add much rigidity, the front one is used for stiffness of the frame, not the bottom one.
  • It has a standard USB connection (USB A>B cable needed)
  • It uses micro-stepping (1/8) for quieter operation.
  • It is cheaper than for example Makerbot's version of the RepRap Generation 3 electronics.
  • It uses small standard Molex connectors for motors, heater, and optos.
  • The pcb of the optos are integrated, so you only need the optos on cables with 5way Molex connectors

Hardware Features

  • on-board USB-RS232 convertor
  • Integrated hardware for driving one extruder (stepper, heater and thermistor)
  • RS485 bus connector with the possibility to link through the extruder step and dir signals
  • Integrated hardware for driving H21LOB or TCST2103 slotted optosensors
  • High input voltage range: 12-24Vdc
  • Use of standard connectors with easy and clean installation
  • Debug LEDs for power, communication and heater output
  • Reset button

Specifications

  • Dimensions 110x60mm
  • Mounting grid: 100x50mm (4x M3)
  • Input voltage 12-24Vdc
  • On-board controller: ATmega 644p (Atmel Corp.)
  • RS485 connector: RJ45
  • Heat output: MOSFET output, 4A
  • Thermistors input: 100K thermistor

There is a lot more information on that page, including information about the power supply, USB, End stops, Heaters, Motors, Firmware, etc. I suggest that you read it fully, in order to understand the board's functionality.

Stepper Motors

The stepper's model number can be seen here:

Stepper serial number

The stepper's model number is SY42STH47-1683B,

which is a NEMA-17 High Torque Hybrid Stepper Motor, with these specifications:

  • Step angle: 1.8°
  • Number of phase: 2
  • Rated voltage: 2.8 V
  • Rated current: 1.68 A
  • Holding torque: 4.4 kg/cm

This would be, at least, part of the datasheet:

Stepper specification

Here are a couple of links, should you need replacements (~€17):

This stepper motor is also listed on the RepRapWiki - NEMA 17 page:

Model           Holding Torque  Rated voltage       Shaft   Step angle  Motor length    Rated current   Inductance
SY42STH47-1684B   43.1 N·cm        2.8 V       Ø 5 mm double    1.8°        48 mm            n/a            n/a
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As far as I can see on the pictures - the main board shall be capable to upload Marlin software and run smoothly.

If you connect power and PC/Mac over the USB connection, then using Pronterface you can validate mechanical movements of the printer.

As the rods looks a bit dusty - please clean them with a soft cloth and degreaser to avoid jamming.

If you have any issues you could flash a new version of the firmware - please use this answer, to the question, How to upload firmware to reprap printer?, as a guide to how to upload firmware to the printer.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks you! I managed to connect my printer but there is a lot of stuff in the command prompt. And at the end it displays this: Error:: Extruder switched off. MINTEMP triggered ! Error:Printer halted. kill() called !! [ERROR] Error:Printer halted. kill() called !! $\endgroup$ – Craciun Alex Jul 5 '18 at 13:08
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    $\begingroup$ @CraciunAlex - You should ask about this error in another (new) question, as having two questions in one post will confuse the question search mechanism. You can refer back to this question (using this question's URL) in the new question, if need be. $\endgroup$ – Greenonline Jul 5 '18 at 16:16

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