Not long after assembling my 3D Printer (the Schlabricator
), my wife, Beehive, AKA She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed, banished my beloved, but slightly odorous machine to the garage. The structure, originally built for Model-T era vehicles, is behind the house and unusable as a garage, owing to a gnarled Russian Olive that obstructs the driveway. There is power to the building, but no heat, and therein lies the motivation for building an enclosure for my Printrbot. When the weather is coolish - in the 40's - it takes an inordinate amount of time for the heated bed to actually heat up. I have experimented with insulating the glass with a blanket of paper sheets, but it still takes far too long, and the temperature plummets when the "blanket" is removed.
UPDATE: I've been using this enclosure almost daily since I built it and I can tell you two things: it works great at trapping heat and controlling the thermal environment around your printer, and that the vent is a useless vanity. Sure, it looks cool, but if it is warm enough to warrant venting the enclosure (as it was occasionally during the summer), I just pull the hinge pins and remove the door. DON'T drop the door! Just sayin' I am building a smaller enclosure for another home-built 3D printer that I am dedicating to ABS after frustrating experiments with PLA.
Other uses for a 3D printer enclosure might include mitigating fumes, noise abatement, or protection from dust or inquisitive felines. Regardless, join me on my 3D Plexiglass adventure...