Assembling the 3D Printer Kit





Introduction: Assembling the 3D Printer Kit

Let`s try to construct 3D printer, the last time invention.

The description of what is it and the attempt to create step-by-step manual is behind.

I`m not a professional in 3D printing. This printer is the first experience.

The review is written by the novice.

The package by the first.

Big box.

The box is spacious. The size - 540х460х225mm. Total weight 11kg. The another one was inside. The name of printer is specified on the inner side but somehow it is — 3DCSTAR.

All the components are neatly stacked in three trays of polyethylene foam.

Top tray

Here is control board and the display panel, fixing elements, vertical mechanisms and acrylic elements of the frame.

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On the second tray is a board and a bunch of acrylic frame components.

Board is made of glass and is put into the package center.

On the lower tray is metal rails and spindles, as well as motors, extruder, power supply and all small stuff.


The motors are neatly stacked in it`s sections.

The package is great. It`s really hard to damage something.

The control board included with the printer manages all the mechanisms: motors, heating of board and extruder, receiving the signals of all the terminal switches, etc.

The card is very common. It`s separately available. Most likely the boards only have different firmware.

Also the kit includes MicroSD. The printer model and the version of firmware are specified on the package.

Control board

On the left side of card the motor drivers chips are set ( as far as I understand — Allegro A4988). The small radiators are glued to this for the better cooling.

On the right side of card the «brains» and transistors of heaters power management and fans are set.

The down side of card is empty. There is only paths.

Some group photos.

1. Processor AtMega1284P

2. Drivers closer. Each of the drivers has the trimmer for adjustment of motor current behind.

3. Also on the card is set jumper USB VREG. I don`t understand why it is needed so I left it without analysis. The Reset button is set behind and for all time I didn`t have to use it even once.

4. Small radiators are set on the transistors which manage board and extruder heating power.

1. Fans are connected via transistors. Radiators don`t needed here because current is small.

2. The connection to the USB is implemented with a chip FTDI FT232RL.

3. There is a level converter chip 74HC4050. It provides the convertion of input signals with high voltage into signals with logic level, safe for the microcontroller.

4. Connector for the in-circuit programming and for the additional devices connection (as far as I understand).

All connectors are detachable. Leftward the X-, Y-, Z- axes motors and motor of E extruder are connected. The Z-axis sockets are working simultaneously and connected in parallel as here is two motors.

The SD card has been in the socket already. It contains the construction manual and a couple of models for testing. The SD card is nameless, 8 GB.

The MiniUSB socket for connection to the computer is set behind.

Printer supports both SD card and direct computer printing.

The build process.

Step 1, X-axis motor

Motor is on the general tray with other motors, the lowest level of package

The acrylic details and the package with mounting hardware are behind.

There was two packages with mounting hardware. The bigger one is needed.

Also the allen wrench and screwdriver are needed.

I arranged the mounting hardware in separate packages according to the size and type of hardware for the convenient building.

Advise you to do the same cause it`s much more helpful.

The kit includes four stepper motors SY42STH38-1684A , one pair to drive with a gear belt (left) and another pair with the defined dampers (right).

For this step you need the motor which is on the left in the photo.

So, take the acrylic detail which is on the photo, motor, four 10 mm long screws and Hex key.

Complete node. On the photo the wires from the motor headed up but it`s better to set it down ( turn motor 180̊ while mounting).

Step 2, the front side of the frame

Take a package with a small acrylic elements and an element with the bearing on the lower tray.

All the necessary is on the photo.

Here is applied screws for Phillips screwdriver, not for hexahedron.

Connect details and fix the structure with screws. Elements have to be tightened firmly.

Some acrylic residues are in the corners of such nodes sometimes. If the elements don`t fit well, try to check and cut off the excess.

Step 3, the back side of the frame

Two types of switches, two big and one small. For this step, you can use one of big. Connection with glue.

All the necessary for the further construction is on the photo. Motor from step 1, small acrylic elements from step 2.

The switch is screwed to one of the small acrylic elements as on the photo.

Complete node.

Step 4, constructing heated platform.

At this point, we open the small packet.

Take a frame, three bearings and twelve large diameter screw.

Yes, exactly three bearings, instead of four. This is not a fault, but a feature.

Twist all together as on the photo.

In addition to the glass table in the package was heater.

The point is it`s needed to heat the table for better printing quality. Sometimes quite a bit, sometimes up to 100-110 degrees (e.g. ABS plastic).

Board is made of glass. It is recommended to stick the blue masking tape on the surface of the table for better adhesion of the model. Nevertheless, tape stuck to the down side and I cut off the excess.

Twist the heater and board together with the 30 mm long screws and nuts. Set the spring on the top. Thermal sensor, which helps to control the temperature of the heater, is stuck by the blue scotch tape from below.

Gathering together the whole structure. But I didn`t realized I had to disassemble the back.

So I recommend you not to do final stage.

Step 5, Z-axis motors

The required kit for the assembly of one actuator is on the photo. Two kits, for left and right actuator, are necessary.

This nodes have to be installed so that one hole would be at the left and one at the right.

Elements are screwed to the motors. Elements have slots which can be bent a little while pushing.

I set it mounting so that the bottom of damper extend a little beyond the acrylic shell.

Two almost identical units ready.

Step 6, assembly of the printer frame

Pick the biggest part of frame, corner elements, power supply, big terminal switch and two small acrylic elements.

Power supply, metal casing; passive cooling, is included with the printer. Designed for the output voltage of 12 V and a maximum current of 20 Amps.


Setting power supply, display and terminal switch on the frame.

The power supply is mounted by three screws.

Mounting holes for terminal switch is the slots for adjustment. I installed it in the top position, but then shifted down.

Step 7, installation of the Z-axis actuators

Frame and actuators from the step 5 are needed.

Wires should be inserted into special holes at first, then set the actuators.

Power supply should be set after setting the actuators.

Step 8, constructing the Y-axis mechanism

400mm long studs with 8 mm diameter are needed.

Frame from step 7 and node from step 3 are needed.

Also wrench, which doesn`t included (it`s a pity), is needed.

Screwing the back side with motor.

After this, cheat on each pin on the nut and put on one washer, insert axis as made in the image and put on the washer, then the two nuts and another washer..

Node from step 2 is needed. Screwing it to the sticking studs.

It`s convenient to fix the front side at first.

After this, set the distance 220 mm between front side of frame and inner side of the front by the nuts manually.

Then tighten the nuts inside the frame by the wrench.

Tighten nuts to the back side manually. Finally, tighten the nuts at the back side of the printer with the wrench. Make sure there is no misalignment or bending of the acrylic parts. It can burst in the process.

Step 9, setting the board frame

Pick the 380 mm long studs without thread and complete board from step 4.

Parsing out the construction watching out the springs.

Moving aside the front (or back) clamps. Setting the studs to the linear bearings inserting it to the opposite side of the frame. This way setting the board frame.

Close the clamps.

Step 10, setting Y-axis gear belt

One gear belt is needed.

I had one hand to stretch the belt taut, the second to twist the screwdriver and the third to hold the back side of the nut. :)

I wrapped the rest of belt around the frame and fixed it with strainer.

The gear head is set on the motor to make the belt be closer to the center in any position (right top photo)

At the end of the building I noticed an element for the board frame.

I redid the fasteners.

Step 11, extruder and fan

The extruder at 1.75mm thread was included.

Also the kit includes fan, radiator, protective grille and fasteners.

The mechanism of extruder is on the photo. The push-type pedal mechanism is right at the top. Roller moves away from the gear shaft while pressing and the thread can be inserted inside.

The thread is pressed to the gear mechanism with the roller after releasing mechanism and can be provided to the extruder (heater) while motor rotation. Printer electronics enables the reversal as well.

The additional fan for cooling the printed item is seen on the right.

Mounting radiator with two screws. I extra greased place of contact with heat conducting paste

It looks like this being assembled. Few goals has left. I laid them between the plastic racks and radiator.

Step 12, X-axis actuator.

Two 440 mm long studs and screws are needed.

Fastening the last remaining motor and switcher to the plastic guide.

Gathering the whole structure all together.

Step 13, setting the X-axis actuator gear belt

Inserting belt into grooves.

I used screeds to fix the belt, two at first and the third to make the loop tightened.

Step 14, setting the X-axis actuator and extruder.

Gathering and joining together all the rest :)

Inserting the studs without thread and setting the X-axis actuator at the same time.

Inserting the threaded studs and dropping them on the thread.

After this, tighten the belt fixing it with screeds at the same time.

Step 15, setting the card

Inserting all the wires to the card

Step 16, wire connection

All connections are done according to the scheme

Building is now complete.

Arranging stuff and minor improvements

A special tube, screeds and clips was included . There weren`t the clips enough but the tube has remained.

Putting the wires to make it not fall at the heater or in the mechanisms.

I made the ends of the wires with different lengths and brought them out one by one. Unnecessary wires are folded and stuffed into a tube.

I set the soft speaker cable instead of the board heater connection wire and directed it towards.

The board has two LEDs. While the heater is working only one lights.

Attaching the wires from switch.

Building the printer is finished.

The kit includes the details for building the stand for plastic

Axis made of a tube was short.

Making new longer furniture tube instead of one included

The main printer menu. When you press the up / down button, you can view the current status of the printer. On the photo printing time is after some short tests.

Printer calibrating, distance between board and extruder. To perform it, click on the middle button, then to the bottom, to the right, then once again. Для этого нажимаем на среднюю кнопку, дальше в самый низ, вправо, потом еще раз.

Here is calibration menu. This menu lets you do six basic operations:

1. move all the mechanisms to the zero state

2. set the extruder at the four corners of the board

3. set the nozzle height above the table. The default state is 0.2mm. It can be changed but only until the next move.

Press «right» button to activate the necessary mode.

Do the following steps at first:

1. Set the same distance between the X-axis and bottom side of frame on the turned-off printer (горизонтальные направляющие по которым бегает экструдер). Rotate the relevant motors manually.

2. Twist the nuts of board tightly. Make sure the board doesn`t press against the mount underneath.

3. Switch on the printer. Select the settings menu. Selecting operations “to the zero point”, “to any particular position” and rotating adjusting screw on the photo make the nozzle bottom stay a bit higher above the board surface.

Then, select the extruder positions 1,2,3,4 in the menu riding it to the corners of the board alternately. Doing it, insert sheet of paper between nozzle and board, twist the adjusting nuts so that paper would be tightened with a little effort.

Cut the end of the thread at 45 degrees and align 6-7 cm long piece.

Press the top pedal and insert the thread inside.

Press the mechanism ( holding the extruder from below with another finger) and insert the thread against the stop. It`s necessary to move the thread and let it go even deeper. Remove the fingers from the mechanism.

Printer supports both SD card and direct computer printing. It`s more reliable to print from SD card. I printed from computer. The MiniUSB-USB was included for this.

Start printing is better with PLA!

Printing was performed at the software Repetier-Host, slicer - Slic3r.

This is ABS plastic. I had to learn the printer settings. The tuning process can be seen on the purple details. The items peeled-off from the board causing problems.

There is three videos – 1 and 2 with acceleration to 5 times and the third with acceleration to 7 times.

Plastic PLA and the software Repetier-Host were used. Slicer Slic3R is applied in the first case and CuraEngine is in the second and third cases.



This item is for cleaning the plastic thread of dust.

Dust shouldn`t get into the extruder. It may cause the problems with the printing. Don`t remove the thread from extruder until the operation stops.


Area where got the dust is at the bottom right on the photo.

My opinion:

The kit is well packed. It`s easy to build. The set includes almost all the necessary stuff and enables the printing almost immediately after building. The one rule is to start with the PLA plastic.

Good luck!




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    Great tutorial. When I eventually get a 3D printer I am definitely going to assemble it myself.

    Thank you for your support, I tried, but the site can not display an overview of the way it was designed :(