Tag Archives: Ceramic 3D Printer

Build your own ceramic 3D printer for under $700

A Maker by the name of Johnathan Keep has unveiled a new Ceramic Delta 3D Printer powered by an Arduino Mega 2560 (ATmega2560). The build, which only cost about $700, is capable of printing a clay medium opposed to the more traditional plastic filament.


According to Keep, “The aim of the design was to keep it simple, using basic DIY skills and parts available on the Internet.” And, while the design is specifically created to print clay, it could be adapted to work with other materials, the Maker adds.

Based on ‘delta’ style 3D printers, the DIY design is comprised of modified parts from a Techcon Systems dispensing gun for the extruder — including the gun’s cartridges and retainer body. Compressed air is used to extrude the material from the cartridge and is capable of providing around one hour’s worth of printing before it needs to be replaced.

The Maker elected to equip the printer with an Arduino Mega 2560 (ATmega2560) in order to drive the three high torque stepper motors to position the guide rods. The rods are held in place using MDF and plastic pieces as a platform and open-frame top to allow for movement while being stable. The project also is controlled by a RAMPS 1.4 set.


“Annoyed and frustrated by 3D Systems buying out and then stopping the production of the RapMan 3D printer. This was the first kit printer Belgian design duo Unfold adapted to print with clay and has subsequently been copied and widely used by others, I decided to develop my own replacement 3D printer,” the Maker elaborates on his blog. “By 3D printer standards this is a rather primitive tool set, but it does offer an accessible way into a very exciting new way of working with clay.”

For more detailed information on this Maker’s build, head on over to his step-by-step blog post here.

This Arduino-based 3D printer uses clay to build ceramics

While a vast majority of 3D printers use materials such as plastic, metals and even wood to bring ideas life, a Dutch Design duo has introduced a machine capable of creating objects out of ceramic.


Powered by an Atmel based Arduino and Ramps 1.4, the printer is equipped with an SD slot and three 2A stepper motors. The structure of Vormvrij itself has been built with as many standard components as its creators could find, in order to reduce costs and leave plenty of room for improvements and modifications.

MAKE Magazine’s Cabe Atwell notes that given the machine’s rather large size, Vormvrij is capable of printing out items that are nearly 3-feet tall with a base of 23” x 31″.


While the speed of their printer is contingent upon the specific design and wetness of the clay being used, the device is still faster than other desktop 3D printers. For instance, simple designs like a ceramic bottle may take just under 20 minutes to construct, while more complex things like a vase can take up to an hour.

Users may find that the base itself is unusually heavy; however, it was designed this way to offset the weight of the clay and counteract the movements caused by the single Z-arm.

Interested in learning more about the Dutch Makers’ 3D printer? Head on over to their official website here. For those do-it-yourselfers out there, you can always build your own for less than $700.