Introduction: 3D Printer Enclosure With Lights

About: I'm a woodworker who makes fun woodworking projects in my garage and shares them with the world!

I made an enclosure for my Prusa i3 RepRap 3D Printer to protect it from sawdust in my woodworking shop. Watch my video of the project and follow these steps to make one for your 3D printer. The overall size is 19.5" wide x 22" tall x 23" deep; however, you may need to adjust the size to fit your 3D printer.

Supplies: 1/4" plywood, 1/2" plywood, 3/4" plywood, clear acrylic, zip ties, screws, glue, LED light strip, washers, magnets

Tools: Table saw, band saw, drill, square, sander, trim router, scissors, tape measure

Step 1: Make the Base and Sides

I measured the 3D printer and cut a base a little bigger than the footprint of the printer. I cut two sides with openings for windows that would be taller than the printer. I screwed these together with the base elevated, so that I can mount the electronic components underneath the printer.

Step 2: Add Windows to Sides

I used a trim router with a rabbeting bit to route a recesses for the plexiglass windows. I measured the opening and cut the two windows to fit.

Tip! Use caution when cutting plexiglass. New plexiglass usually comes with a protective film applied. Leave that film on to prevent scratches. Saw surfaces can scratch plexiglass.

Step 3: Mount the 3D Printer

I marked and drilled holes where the wires need to pass through to the electronics underneath. I also marked and drilled small holes under the four corners of the printer so that I could secur it to the base with zip ties.

Tip! I highly recommend that you take pictures of all wiring connections before disconnecting them and routing them through the access holes. This can help to make sure you reconnect them correctly.

Step 4: Mount the Electronics

I mounted the electronics upside down under the base. I made wooden L brackets for the power supply. I used eyelet screws and zip ties to secure the Arduino linquini. I used zip ties to bundle the loose wires so they would not hang down too far underneath.

Step 5: Build a Control Panel Box

I built a small box to hold the printer's smart controller and mounted it to a board for the front of the enclosure. I also added a lighted rocker switch to power on both the 3D printer and the LED light strip. If you have the same smart controller, click here to visit my website article on this project and download my free Control Panel Box template.

Step 6: Add a Top

Cut a top piece from 3/4" plywood with another window and screwed it to the sides.

Step 7: Add a Filament Reel Holder

Make two small side brackets for hanging a dowel rod to hold the filament reels.

Step 8: Add the Back Panel

Cut a back panel to fit from 1/4" plywood. I used 4 screws to attach the back, so that it would be easy to remove if I need to change out the filament reels.

Step 9: Secure the Side Windows

I cut some small guitar pick shaped clips and screwed them to the sides to secure the side windows. It would also be easy to print some similar clips with the 3D printer.

Step 10: Add the Front Window

The front of the enclosure is just a single piece of plexiglass. I attached some cleats across the top and bottom about a 1/4" inside the enclosure. I cut two semi-circles from a large washer and glued them to the middle of the cleats. I drilled recesses in the plexiglass and glued in two small rare earth magnets to hold the window on.

Step 11: Turn It On!

I plugged in the power cord and turned it on, and it worked on the first try! Awesome! Now I just need to learn how to design 3D models that I can print with it, but that's another project for another day!

If you need to make an enclosure for your 3D printer, I hope this project gives you some useful ideas. Thanks for checking out my Instructable! Steve....

Make it Glow Contest 2016

Participated in the
Make it Glow Contest 2016