today is May 24, 2022

By now we’re all used to the idea of three dimensional printing, as over the last fifteen years or so it’s become an indispensable tool for anyone with an interest in making things without an industrial scale budget. There are still a few limitations to the techniques used in a common 3D printer though, in particular being tied to layers in a single orientation. It’s something that can be addressed by adding tilt and rotational axes to the printer to deliver a five-axis device, but this has not been available in an affordable form. [Freddie Hong] and colleagues have tackled the production of an affordable printer, and his solution fits neatly on the bed of a Prusa i3 to convert it to five-axis machine without breaking the bank.

The quantity and quality of the work is certainly impressive, with suitable slicing software being developed alongside the 3D printed parts to fit the two extra axes. For now all we can do is look at the pictures and the video below the break, but once the work has been presented the promise that all the necessary files will be made public. We can see versions of the hardware finding their way onto printers other  than the Prusa, and we can see this becoming yet another piece of the regular armory available to those of us who make things.