Replicape Rev A4 ready for review

Replicape-1-of-6Replicape revision A4 is finally ready for review! The important changes include a brand new layout (Huge thank you to Stoneshop for sending┬áme a brand new layout, that’s what open source hardware is all about), a few grips for reducing the noise and a few tweaks on the user interface. If anyone else besides David from CircuitCo wants to do layout revision, go right ahead! Comments are welcome.

A lot of people a have been asking about the board and when it will be ready and all I can say is: Soon! CircuitCo will be producing the board, testing it and handling RMAs and it will be sold through all your favorite electronics distributors (The same that sell BeagleBone black), so when it finally starts selling, it will definitely be available! I have not yet been able to get a definite date from CircuitCo, but they are reviewing as we speak, so I’m estimating sales will begin in a matter of weeks. The price is $179.

As for the software, there have been a lot of improvements in speed and bug fixing. Since this summer, there has been a software bug in the ADC driver that has caused a few of the measurements to be dropped giving unreliable temperature readings. A backport from the 3.12 kernel seems to have fixed this, so everything looks great. In fact We are now aiming at a Kickstarter in Q1 of 2014, in the meantime, here is a video showing an early prototype of Thing printer printing something : )

Tree frog on Thing from Elias Bakken on Vimeo.

Also, Koen has been doing a great job getting Slic3r running on Angstrom, so I’m working hard on moving everything to the 2013.06 dist of Angstrom so I can finally slice directly on the printer. Yay!

Most readers of this blog are very familiar with the features of the Replicape, but if not, have a look at the repository for an overview of the features. I also had a beer with Simen of the Bengler project yesterday, the guy that wrote the original code for GRBL, which is the the core of just about every desktop 3D-printer available. He gave me some great tips on improving the path planner in Replicape. In particular he mentioned having an n-step path segment prediction instead of the 18-step currently available on the Arduinos. Also, he pointed out that there would probably be a significant noise reduction in the steppers due to the much more fine pitch timing of the steps from the 200 MHz PRUs compared to the 3o kHz timers in the Arduions. He also liked the readability of code from writing Python : )

Sorry for not updating the blog lately, I’ve been busy with a paper, but now that that’s handled, I’m back baby! As a band-aid, here is a picture of the brand new Manga Screen (Rev A3) that arrived yesterday.

Manga Rev A3

9 thoughts on “Replicape Rev A4 ready for review

  1. Hello,

    I can’t find any contact info in the site so forgive me for using the comment section. I’m Algen, I work with engineering website EEWeb.com and would love to do an exchange of website links (with your website: http://hipstercircuits.com) and feature you as a site of the day on EEWeb (you can see an example here http://www.eeweb.com/websites/multirotor-usa). Is this of interest to you?

    Hope to hear from you soon.

    Sincerely,

    Algen Dela Cruz
    EEweb.com
    algen@eeweb.com

    • Algen, thanks for your inquiry, I guess it’s typical engieers to not bother with details such as contact info : )

      It would be an honor to be a featured site on EEWeb!

      I’ll send you an e-mail to discuss the details,

      -Elias

  2. Hello!
    Is it possible to order MangaBoard – either assembled, kit or at least the PCB? If so, how could I contact you to discuss all the details?
    Sincerely yours,
    Arseniy.

  3. Hi Elias,

    Don’t know if this is the best place, but I’m having difficulties with Redeem and a Floating Point Exception when doing a Z move. But no stack trace, so I think it’s comming from the native code, or even the PRU, but not sure.

    I though I had tracked it down to the PlathPlanner.cpp specifically around the “// we are accelerating” if statement in the run() method around line 850, but I can’t see what if anything in that if statement would cause the FPE, so must somise that it’s a red herring and it’s infact another thread and it so happens to alway coinside.

    What I don’t understand is I’ve put further logging in this method just after the close brace of the if statement block but it’s not outputting the Log entry however if I put an extra log statement in the if statement I get it.
    Further I have completely commented out the For loop and still get the FPE.

    So any pointer as to where I should look for this FPE next? Could it be that the Z axis is tied into the ADC or Extruder on another thread?

    Steve

    • Hello Steve! This place is as good as any : )

      I feel like I have experienceed the same issue. Could it be that the steps pr mm for the Z-axis is rounded down to zero? This is actually a bug, but the steps pr mm is converted to a long before being fed to the native path planner, even though it should be a float. Try to increase the value in your settings file and see if it helps!

      • Yes. You are correct. vMax and vMaxReach was 0 and the interval time calculation was getting a divide by zero error.
        But for some wierd reason (more likely my limited understanding of Native C to Python integration) I was getting the log output from a log statement after the statement! Which threw me off.

        However I’ve patched the code so that if v is ever 0 it gets put to either fullInterval or just 1 so avoid that issue (haven’t work out which is better).

        I’ve also learned all about mixed language debugging which is a plus side.

        • I think the problem is that the native code debugger is buffered (writing to stdout) while the python debugger is unbuffered and writes to stderr. I thought I had corrected that, but perhaps not.. Or are you workin on an older version than the latest?

          • Whatever you have commited in the Redeem branch of GIT. So yes the latest

            I’m attempting to un hardcoding all the ports and pins (so it’s configurable from the config file) and add a third extruder or axis.
            Plus bug fixing, like if you accidently put G0 X0 F0 it FPE’s.

            I’m attempting to hook this up to a home built Pick and Place machine and drive everything from Redeem hooked up to a custom front end that also has vision.

            But at the same time trying to also make it compatible with a three extruder Ultimaker clone (So many projects!!).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>