Introduction: Embed Google Cloud Print

I had this cheap, mono laser printer that I wanted to dedicate to my kids endless printing of internet garbage. I've scrapped every PC in favor of a Chromebook, Chromebox, and Chromebit. YES, I have a problem.

There is a ton of information about using the Pi to link your antiques to the cloud. So I'm not going to cover that in here. Here is a great step by step of you need help.

I wanted to save space, reduce power supplies, and minimize the chance my kids would destroy anything.

For this project I embedded a Raspberry Pi B+ into the printer.

Step 1: Parts

I already owned all these parts....

Dell 1130
Raspberry Pi B+
Micro USB
Printer USB (A-B)

Step 2: Open the Printer

The first thing I did was to open the printer near the power supply.

If I need to tell you to make sure it's unplugged, please stop reading. Better yet, please stop breathing.

My goal was to meter out 5v after the power supply board.

Step 3: My Lucky Day

I found an empty plug with DCV printed on the board. Yep, 5v has been found.

Step 4: Power Supply

I cut the USB end off the micro power supply for the Pi.

Stripped the wires, and soldered them onto the appropriate posts.

The worst solder job ever was a temp to make sure it worked, I did go back and do a respectable job.

Step 5: Printer Cable

I didn't want any cables, so I improvised.

I shortened the printer cable to about 4 inches. Just cut, splice, solder, and protect.

This printer had a blank in the spot where an either cable would go. (Wish I got the option)

It was a perfect spot for the USB to fit into the Pi.

Step 6: Add the Pi

I pulled a Bic Clic pen apart and cut the barrel in half.

Using double sided tape, I mounted the two pieces on the existing PCB. Next, I added a piece of double sided tape on top of each piece.

I connected the Pi to power, connected the USB from the printer, and pushed the Pi down on the tape.

The last picture makes me laugh. I wedged the pen tip in there to help secure it down.

Step 7: Close It Up

I put the back cover on.


Step 8: Thoughts

Obviously the cloud functionality was tested before the installation.

I originally wanted to use a Pi Zero. However, I would need a powered USB hub to get everything to work and that made it not worth it.

Speed is absolutely a compromise. The first day of use my girls were doing multiple prints because they didn't think it worked. Sure, a Pi 3 would help, but I'd still have the B+ sitting around. Oh, and it's not my problem, it's theirs. lol

I could not find a spec sheet or reason for the hub I stole 5v from. I did meter out 2 amps worth of LEDs and kept them on for 24 hours to ensure overheating wasn't an issue. Lastly, I did hook up a monitor to the Pi to confirm that the low power indicator was not on.