For the last week and a half, I’ve been posting about enclosing my Ender 3 V2 with the Creality tent. This post will briefly summarize the steps I took up to this point. Then I will share some of the finishing touches to complete this project. Overall I must say I am pleased with the printer being enclosed. I’ve been able to print ABS parts without warping.
Here is what I previously did to get the enclosure going:
- Setting up the Creality tent.
- Removed most of the electronics from the chabmer. The stepper motors, limit switches, heater cartridges, and thermistors are left for electronics on the printer itself.
- Added LED lighting.
- Reduced the LED lighting so I wouldn’t be blinded.
- Ran wiring from the printer to the electronics outside of the enclosure.
- Installed a new electronics case. Buck converters were also added for the Raspberry Pi and LED lighting.
Tidying up the case
Inside the case, I tidied up the wiring, so it runs straight from the motherboard’s top edge to the hole on the enclosure’s right side. I made sure none of the wiring was above the buck converter going to the LED lighting.
I added two heatsinks to the LED lighting buck converter. There are a couple of components on the LM2596 DC-DC buck converter that can run quite hot.
Finally, I put shrink tubing on the connectors going into the rocker switches. I know I can buy these connectors with silicone covers. But I prefer to use shrink tubing.
Putting heatsinks on the stepper motors
Stepper motors can put out a lot of heat. I’ve noticed the silent stepper motor drivers that come with the 32-bit motherboard cause a lot less heat on the motors, but they still can generate quite a bit of heat. To help dissipate that heat, I’ve installed heatsinks on the x-axis, y-axis, and extruder stepper motors. No heatsink was put on the z-axis motor because there is nowhere to put a heatsink on it.
The x-axis and extruder stepper motors were relatively easy to put on. These are 40x40x11mm heatsinks with thermal conductive heat. They can be put on the bottom of the motors.
The y-axis stepper motor is a little bit more tricky to heatsink. One of the leveling wheels goes right by the stepper motor when the bed goes to the rear of the printer.
Initially, I was going to take the fins away from one corner of the heatsink and stick it on like that. That works fine for the Ender 3 Pro. That, however, won’t work the same for the Ender 3 V2. The Ender 3 V2 has a bed that goes back further and thus goes farther along the stepper motor’s middle.
So I decided to install a series of small heatsinks. Below is the picture of the heatsinks I installed. There are five heatsinks with fins. Then I have three heatsinks that are just flat pieces of copper. With the heatsinks placed like this, I have more than enough room to level my bed. Plus, heat should still get dissipated a lot better with this setup than going without any heat dissipation solution.
Tidying up wiring inside the enclosure
I reused the cable tubing that came with the printer where I could. I did add some more tubing to keep everything neat and tidy. The only wires not in the tubing will be replaced in future projects (and future posts).
Mounting the camera
I decided to use Thing 3147295 by 3D-FloW to mount the camera. I like how this particular mount mounts on the x-axis, allowing it to move up when the z-axis goes up. I found out the hard way to print version two of this model. The Ender 3 V2 has a larger fan shroud than the original Ender 3s. That shroud will crash into the camera if version 1 of the camera mount is used.
You may notice a zip tie in the picture below. The design was a little too tight for my Arducam. So I made a slight modification, and it works fine. I will maybe reprint the cam case in the future, so I don’t need the zip tie.
One of the first upgrades I did a year ago to my Ender 3 Plus was to add yellow springs. I had some on hand but decided to hold off on adding yellow springs to the Ender 3 V2 to see how good the stock springs are. Well, they are crap. The stock springs would not stay level for anything. For every new print, I would be making significant adjustments. Now, with the yellow springs in, I am only making the occasional micro-adjustment.
Outside cable management
Outside of the enclosure, I put tubing on the wiring going from the case to the enclosure. This makes everything look neat and professional. The only cable not inside the tubing is the ribbon cable going from the Raspberry Pi to the camera.
I also added a longer ribbon cable to go between the motherboard and the display. This gave me room to mount the display up on the wall. The display is now at the perfect height for me to use as I level my bed. My recommendation for displays is to find a comfortable height and then figure out a mounting solution.
That’s it! I’ve printed a few parts with the enclosure, and I am pleased. I was unable to print anything ABS before unless it was a tiny part. Even temp towers would have issues. Now I can print ABS with no problems. I’ve also noticed PETG prints turn out much more superior. I did have to adjust my fan settings slightly, but it’s normal having to change settings for PETG anyhow. The space above the case will have shelves added. And the poster behind the enclosure will be moved to an open wall.
This series of posts ended up much longer than I planned. But I think it could help anyone who intends to do something similar to see the steps involved. This whole process could quickly have been done in a short afternoon.
Song of the day: Father Christmas
It is Christmas Eve. So I might as well play one of my favorite Christmas songs. This is from the Kinks, probably one of the most underrated bands of all time.
Bonus Song: Mistress for Christmas
And what is Christmas without AC/DC?