Category Archives: 3d Printing

Prusa i3 8” 3D Printer Enclosure

UPDATE
Files for the enclosure are now listed on Gumroad!

In the late fall of 2013, I bought and assembled a Prusa i3 3D printer. I split on the costs with a friend. We ordered from Makerfarm.

I will write a different blog post about owning and using a 3D printer. In the meantime, I decided to design an enclosure for my printer. Partly for containing heat without overheating. Partly for creating a central venting position.

My beautiful wife used Hot Pop Factory in the recent past for laser-cutting so it seemed a natural solution for me to go with for my enclosure. I contacted Matt from Hot Pop Factory and got some advice in how he needed files set up. After several iterations in design with feedback from Matt, I settled on this:

Enclosure Plan

Matt, once again, proved invaluable in being willing to test out my design. Namely the nut capture and slot fitting. He was the one that pointed out the need for the tabs on either side of the nut to supply structural support and enforce the 90° angle;

Laser Test

I really like machine screws. Specifically the #6-32 machine screws (machine screws don’t have pointy ends) of varying lengths. You can go to Home Depot and buy a box of screws for around five bucks. Good deal if you want to monkey around. A box is usually 100 pieces. For this enclosure, I made sure to have three lengths available; 1/2″, 3/4″ and 1″. With a box of 6-32 nuts to fit.

Nut and Screws

Finally, after much finagling, my enclosure was designed, uploaded, downloaded, configured and cut! Matt called, I drove over to Hot Pop and there was my enclosure begging to be assembled.

Newly Cut

I am writing the assembly instructions and will sell the plan via Gumroad soon for $10. I will also offer a price for a laser-cut enclosure kit which you will assemble yourself. All necessary hardware included. That will be in the under-$100 range.

This is the assembled enclosure with the printer inside. On the right, I’d popped an under-cabinet LED strip in to see it with lighting.

Assembled

The filament holder is strong enough to hold two fully-loaded spools! Check it out!

Filament Holder

I will say it was fun experiment and even were I to never sell one of these in kit form, it was worth doing. If only because it let me do something I was unfamiliar with in the beginning.