After several months of trial and error (lots of error), we’ve found a MVP solution for the large 3L wash stations that is semi-automated. After a teardown of the small F3 wash station, we discovered that the system is simply a mag drive with a winged magnetic paddle tied to a stepper motor in the base, with a “inside tub” matching magnetic mixer blade.
We replicated this design using the two stubs inside the basin, which are clearly for these types of attachments and as I alluded to in prior posts, this basin is most certainly used in the formal 3L wash station. We 3D printed via the F3 printers or via a FDM printer all the pieces to make it work and after an obscene amount of dev time, we have a pretty reliable solution. Not very pretty, but it does agitate the IPA and wash our prints very effectively.
All the parts and pieces cost us about $250-400 dollars which is a far cry from the $3K automated solution, but it works and I’m happy with it. I’m more than willing to share the design with everyone as long as you don’t try and commercialize it for your own benefit. There are a lot of improvements to be made and I’m hoping the people on this forum would take this base design and help improve it for all of us. If anyone knows any arduino programming, it would make it extra sweet with an integrated timer and beeper to know when it’s done with the wash.
The interior mixers and the bottom paddle attached to the stepper motor shaft are made with high temp resin. It’s fairly immune to IPA after it’s full cure cycle, but the stepper motor gets crazy hot and it’s the only resin that we’ve tried short of machining aluminum that holds up to the heat.
All other parts that help properly locate the resin tank over the stepper motor were all FDM on a Prusa.
We currently have two of these wash stations as a dirty/clean station because we primarily use T2000 and they both sit on one cart that has two rectangular holes cut out for the stepper motor assembly. Apparently it’s a bit too much weight for the cart and our next immediate improvement will be to place the bottom into a vented enclosure to have it sit on a table.
Take a look at the pictures and lets crowdsource an alternative to the long delayed F3L wash station!! First ping me with your interest and then we can step this forward by sharing the files.