This SLA 3D printer can be created using materials found throughout your home — and an Arduino.
Although many 3D printers strive for simplicity and affordability, this one surely takes the cake. Whereas a device under $500 may catch your attention, one that costs less than a Saturday night dinner surely will hold it. Buildyourownsla.com user “Mystamo” recently created a DIY SLA 3D printer for less than $30 that prints from the top-down or bottom-up, all powered through an Arduino Uno (ATmega328).
SLA typically features a bottom-up style due to issues like the need for more resin and layer height control. A projector or laser diode sits underneath the resin tank with transparent bottom and a non-stick surface, pointing upwards to cure the resin.
For his build, Mystamo had taken his top-down device and wanted to test as to whether it would work with his ACER 5360 720P projector for a bottom-up design as well. After some investigation, the projector was indeed suitable for the job without requiring much further customization other than removing its focus screw for manipulating the focus wheel and a little fine-tuning of the focus.
The Maker reveals that since he didn’t have Z-axis limits, he set the build plate just slightly above the resin surface with some resin pointing out of the his perf board holes. Mystamo acquired an inexpensive stepper drive that was soldered directly to the pin, and added a few connectors for easy removal. It also runs at 1/16 micro stepping. Beyond that, he refined his 3D printer by employing the Arduino to run a very simple HTL code with only minor modifications.
From there, the 3D printing process was ready to begin with 8-second exposures on the first three layers, and 2.5 second exposures on all other layers, all at 0.05mm per layer. While this particular design doesn’t use any 3D-printed parts itself, it still embodies true DIY spirit as the entire thing was devised using items found around the house. And in case you’re wondering, yes it works, as seen with his latest print: a Terminator skull.