I'm starting work on a very large 3d printer that uses very large filament. The idea is to house the entire thing in a shipping container and print things as large as cars.

Filament will be some type of epoxy that is to be extruded out of a large 25mm nozzle. A second smaller nozzle using the same material will be used to do finer edges. A third nozzle will be used to produce supports of a different material.

I know this is quite different than most 3d printing applications. I am wondering what slicers I should look into using that are adaptable enough to work with these constraints, or if such software exists.

  • $\begingroup$ Size should not matter, what you need to look out for is a slicer that is clever enough to cope with a large nozzle for the rough shape and the fine nozzle for the details. A separate support extruder is no big of a problem. A university we work with have a similar setup as you to produce CF/PEEK moulds, I'll try to find out the software they use, but it is most probably custom software. $\endgroup$ – 0scar Mar 8 '19 at 8:30
  • $\begingroup$ Interesting question. $\endgroup$ – Mick Mar 8 '19 at 9:18
  • $\begingroup$ Now I'm curious. You are using epoxy? What is the minimum cure time of that epoxy? Are you heating the environment inside the container? $\endgroup$ – user77232 Mar 12 '19 at 19:39
  • $\begingroup$ I can't reveal a lot about it due to confidentiality concerns. Hopefully I'll be able to show it off when it's done. $\endgroup$ – henradrie Mar 12 '19 at 19:42
  • $\begingroup$ I don't think I'm heating the inside environment though. $\endgroup$ – henradrie Mar 12 '19 at 19:43

After checking it up, Ultimaker Cura (and possibly most other slicers capable of multi-extruder setups) is able to handle multiple extruders of varying nozzle size and seems to be ok with 25 mm Nozzles or something ludicrous such as 200 mm filament. You should aid its slicing in some way:

  • Dedicate one nozzle to the support structure, that's easy.
  • Design your parts with 2 shells:
    • One is the main body with corners cut to the main nozzle's extrusion diameter.
    • The other is the corners and details.
  • $\begingroup$ Would I treat the 2 shells as different parts for the sake of printing properly? $\endgroup$ – henradrie Mar 8 '19 at 20:10
  • $\begingroup$ @henradrie You would need to assign each shell to one of the extruders. $\endgroup$ – Trish Mar 9 '19 at 4:50

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