HE3D K280 3D Printer Review – Part 1: Build, Tweaks, and First Prints

Hello Karl here again with another 3D printer review. Today we are looking at an HE3D K280. I saw the brand for the first time on Gearbest a couple months ago and asked for it to review. I never heard of this brand before and have been wanting to review a delta style printer. In my case, I should have been careful what I asked for. It took me quite some time to get it to print utilizing the whole print bed. I experienced several challenges and after defeating them I enjoy this printer quite a bit. Delta style printers mesmerize me with the movements that they make and all the math that goes into moving the extruder in the X, Y and Z. Regular Cartesian printers are rather simple in this respect. Build Volume – 280×600 mm Heated bed No Parts cooling 2020 aluminum and all injected molded parts […]

Tronxy X3S 3D Printer Review – Part 3: Upgrades to Fix Bed Leveling Issues (Permanently)

Karl here. I have had the Tronxy X3S 3D printer for a while now. It prints well but as I mentioned in previous articles I had to level for every print. Actually near the end I would just overpower the stepper motors while the skirt was printing and level. Leveling front to back was not affected. Only the z height. So this worked but it was frustrating. Before that I tried several different things to mitigate. I thought maybe the endstop for Z homing was inconsistent and replaced it. I tried heating the bed for extended period of time thinking that maybe some thermal expansion. Didn’t help. I finally did a major change to the X carriage with success. I even moved the printer to our local library and the bed stayed leveled for a demo. I call this a success, and will show how I did it. Inspiration for […]

Tronxy X3S 3D Printer Review – Part 2: Upgraded Heatbed and RAMPS Board

Karl here. So the bed I mentioned in the first part of Tronxy X3S review is not very good. It took about 10-11 minutes to heat up to 60 deg Celsius. I also mentioned I was going to upgrade the board to a RAMPS board. Today we are going to look at both these upgrades. New Heated Bed I can take no credit for this one but I wanted to pass this along. Folger tech sells a 12v 280w heated bed stick on pad. I picked this up for $20, but is now $22. In order to do this upgrade you will need a MOSFET, 12V/30A power supply, and of course the pad above. Super easy installation. Remove the bed and stick on the self adhesive pad centered. Replace the power supply with new one. Should be self explanatory. In order to power this bed a MOSFET is needed. A […]

ACEPC AK1 Celeron J3455 Mini PC Review – Part 1: Unboxing, Teardown, and First Impressions

Karl here. Today we are going to look at the ACEPC AK1 mini PC. Here are some of the specs pulled from ACEPC’s website. The feature that is most notable to me is the included 2.5” hard drive compartment. Hardware CPU:Intel Celeron J3455 GPU:Intel HD Graphics 500 RAM:4GB DDR3L ROM:32GB eMMC WiFi:Ac3165 Dual Band,2.4G/5G LAN: Ethernet RJ45 10/100/1000M Bluetooth: BT V4.0 Interfaces USB port:2xUSB 3.0;2xUSB 2.0;1xType C;support USB disk and USB HDD Card reader: TF Card (up to 128GB) HDMI Port: HDMI 1.4 Microphone audio: 3.5mm Microphone jack x1 Unboxing & Teardown     Some close-up photos to get a better look at the chips, and overall hardware design. First Boot – Storage / Task Manager Storage after first boot: Storage after update: Thermal Testing with Prime 95 Cooling seems adequate. Below is a picture of Prime 95 after 5 minutes. I am glad to see it staying at about […]

Tronxy X3S 3D Printer Review – Part 1: Build and First Prints

Karl here with part 1 of Tronxy X3S build. It is another large volume printer to fully assemble on your own. Taking between 8-10 hours to put together. I have high hopes for this printer. Key things I like: metal frame, dual X, large build volume. Just from looking at it I don’t like the fact that it has no parts cooler but is easy to remedy. Tronxy X3S Specifications Let’s look at some specs. 300 x 300 x 400 mm hot bed (Actually get 330x330x400 build volume) Hot bed temperature: 40 – 110 Deg.C Nozzle temperature: 170-275 Degree Marlin 1.1.5 Frame material: Aluminum Extrusion I have not taken the hotend apart yet so not sure about the nozzle temperature going over 245°C. I will take it apart for the next part. If you are not familiar you don’t want to get lined nozzles above 245°C, or the lining starts […]

Designing a 3D Printed Jig to Flash Firmware to ESP8266 based Light Bulbs

Karl here. I have to say that my favorite part of 3D printing is designing things from scratch. Recently a reader was asking about a way to flash a lot of Ai Lights on a project he was working on. I suggested 3D printing a jig that pressure fits pins. He didn’t have a printer, and we exchanged contact information and he sent me one of the lights and some pogo pins from Amazon. Design in Fusion 360 I started by taking a picture of the light to get my pin placement. I set a scale by measuring a known distance then printed and tested. It took about 3 iterations to get them to line up in real life. Keep in mind camera lenses distort reality and knew It would take a couple times. I would just let a few layers print then stop and line everything up. I had […]

Review of Vobot Alarm Clock with Alexa

Karl here with a review of Vobot sent By Cafago. I had to Google it when I was asked to review it. Turned out it was an Echo type device with a pixel display and a battery. It started as an Indiegogo campaign. I had been wanting to try to do some sort of voice control with my home automation so I agreed to review it. Vobot Clock C1 Specifications These are pulled from Vobot’s website. No power supply is included but a long USB cable is. Vobot Setup I let my wife do the initial setup as I figured that she would use it the most. She followed the instructions, and it seemed straightforward from what she told me. She said she had to reboot it once during a step but it continued the setup with no problems. She tied to our Amazon Prime account, and she quickly was […]

Review of Sonoff RF Bridge, Sonoff 4ch Pro, and Sonoff POW with Sonoff-Tasmota Firmware

Karl here. Today we are going to look at 2 new and one older Sonoff devices. Sonoff RF Bridge – $9.90 433MHz RF to WiFi Bridge Sonoff 4ch Pro – 4 Gang WiFi RF Smart Switch Sonoff POW – Wireless switch with power metering capabilities I spent very little time with the stock firmware on the device. I don’t like the fact that an Internet connection is needed, and I am not in control. As of the time of this writing I found the Ewelink was not configurable enough to meet my needs. There is one feature that is really nice that I could easily see keeping stock firmware. It is the Alexa Skill. It worked. I am also currently reviewing Vobot Smart Alarm Clock with Alexa integration and had no trouble controlling the Sonoff devices with Alexa. But unfortunately I am lazy and want everything automatic so I can’t […]