JuJu's Frame with 3D printed parts and aluminium profiles

Hello Maslow community

I am new to this and I recently ordered a Makermade M2 (waiting delivery). Maslow M4 seams to be a good project, but I arrived to late for the Kickstarter. Anyway, see later how it is working.

I was thinking about the frame fabrication, but I was not very satisfied with the standard or XL frame propositions.

I need a frame which can be folded vertically on the wall to save valuable space in my garage…

Also I was not certain about the wood option, for the following reasons (I may be wrong):

  • Once fabricated, it will be difficult to modify if I need to make some adjustments or changings
  • Difficulty to obtain assembly with good accuracy (within 5mm) due to wood deformation, etc. This will make the calibration operation even harder.
  • Heavy assembly, difficult to disassemble / move if needed one day

I saw the alternatives, using Unistrut or Rexroth profiles, but it is not so easy to procure for me in France at a reasonable price.

Also I wanted to take opportunity to use my 3D printer. So I was inspired by the RS-CNC32 (MakerFr), which use aluminum profile for the frame (100 x 18 mm in France, 100 x 20 mm in the rest of Europe). And I designed a frame.

The frame use the aluminum profile beams and 3D printed parts for the assembly. It is still a draft and I will need to update when I will receive the M2 (after checking dimensions, etc.).

I took care to design with 2 configurations (10 and 12 foot top beam). And with variables to allow adaptation If needed (e.g.: profile dimension 100 x 18).

Also, I kept in mind the possibility to convert/adapt the frame for the M4 in the future. See at the end a quick draft design for the M4 frame using the same assembly system and profiles. But I will not work more on this for the moment…

I am very curious to have your opinion, on my project. And I don’t know if someone already made a similar frames ? If it was a success ?

If it works well, I will maybe share the files and drawings. I will also try to take pictures during the assembly of the frame. Maybe I could make some tutorials later if I have time. I am quite sure this frame could be convenient for beginners with a 3D printer.

The bolts are not showed, but you should understand the principle.

First set of bolts are external from the aluminum profile (sandwich) to make the first assembly and setting. This assembly can be adjusted.

When the setting and accuracy of the frame is good enough, the profile will be drilled trough the 3D printed part, then a second set of bolt can be added to block the frame geometry (it give possibility to disassemble / reassemble keeping the settings).

Edit: I cannot post more than one picture (new user), so I did a big one for the moment…



frame building accuracy is less important than the frame being stiff (not flexing under the loads from the chain)

make sure you leave enough space around the workpiece for the sled to extend 1/2 it’s diameter (looks like you may not have on the bottom)

and if you are cutting to the edge, you want a couple inches of support beyond the edge of your workpiece at the same height as the workpiece.

If you are bulding with aluminum extrusions, make it so the top beam can move in and out to keep the chains parallel to the workpiece.

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Indeed I am not sure about the stiffness… Mainly for the top beam, which will take most of the efforts. I was thinking maybe to double the beam. The assembly should work with longer bolts.
I will certainly make changes when I will start assembling…

For the space around the edges, I need to assess the best way to assemble the support board. I could also enlarge the structure. I will think about this.

For the setting of the top beam in and out. The assembly could mouve like that (limited). But I would prefer to find the best setting during assembly, then to keep it fix. The workpiece thickness should not vary to much and I don’t want to make changes on the frame everyday. Stacking of boards under the workpiece could do the trick as well.

Thank you !

By the way, I started to print some parts.
I will keep you informed later with the modifications and real assembly.

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Those are beautiful prints, nice work!