Manual 3D printing with a MIG welder

On Tuesday the 7th we went to metaallokaal, a metal workshop, to play around with some MIG welders and to get additional information on the welding process. Jeroen, the owner of metaallokaal, gave us some advice on which settings to use. During the instruction our group had a collective eureka moment when Jeroen demonstrated a “wrong” setting for the MIG welder. The feed rate and the power setting were both too low to weld on to the thick plate.

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Kemppi KempoMat 2500

We’ve been looking at one of the core components of our metal 3D printer, the MIG welding machine. In our case, the welding machine is a Kemppi 2500 MIG welder. Since we want to be able to control power and feed rate, we needed to know if and how we could digitally control the main settings of the welding machine.  As it turns out, the feed rate can easily be digitally controlled, but the power requires a small servo on the current switch, since this would be easier and require less alterations to the existing welding machine. Tomorrow we will not only continue our work on the welding machine, we will also tie the knot on the open-source 3D polymer printer we’ll base our design upon. We will keep you posted!

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