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I wanna play too!

Discussion in 'GENERAL Phlatprinter talk' started by HatefulGravey, Oct 27, 2013.

  1. HatefulGravey

    HatefulGravey New Member

    Trophy Points:
    My room mate and I are planning to buy one of these machines in the next 4 or 5 months. (I'm actually hoping to make this a club purchase but I have to sell the other members on that and who knows how that will work out.) We are naturally looking at the MK1 for the time being. I personally want the MK3 but the extra cost if hard to explain to them right now.

    I need some questions answered because I want to start on the right foot. I have been learning Sketch Up in general, I'm almost ready to start adding the tools needed for this application but I wanted a solid footing on the software as well before I added anything.

    Please forgive me if these questions insult in their newb-a-tude. I have read a lot of this forum over the last 24 hours and to be honest most of it is just confusing me. There seems to be quite a bit of basic information missing, or more than likely I'm just not quite smart enough to put it all together by myself.

    Why would you get the MK3 over the MK1?

    Assuming I'm getting the MK1 what mods should I just start with? (I don't want to have to go back and replace parts I just put in because I missed something important)

    Why isn't there a part list to complete the MK1 listed on this site? (or I'm a missing it?)

    In the store there is a DVD on Sketch Up, it says in the description there it is included in the purchase any Phlat Printer, but this isn't mentioned in the descriptions for any of the machines. Just clear this up for me please. If it is included I'll wait to get it with the machine I purchase, if now I'll go ahead and get it because I can learn how to use the machine before I have it and I'll take the head start.

    Is it just me or are there a lot of shadow games being played with these machines? Let me expand on this. Why is the build video not viewable online? I can think of a reason or two, but instead of assuming I'll ask. Why no "needed to complete" list (or atleast a clearly posted list)?

    Maybe I just don't have enough back ground information to even be looking at this machine yet, but I have a desire to create, and the means to aquire the tools so I feel compelled to pursue this. I'm not in any way concerned that I can't learn what I need to know, but the lack of freely available information is disconcerning.

    Why not have a "things to know" sticky in a newbie section somewhere? (Or am I just not finding this as well?)

    The short version on this all is I want in. I want it bad and I can't seem to get the information fast enough. Hell, maybe just a step-by-step on how to make sure I'm doing all this the right way would help not only myself, but everyone else that wants to get into this down the line.

    You all have Crash and The Timcyclopedia to thank for my interest and therefor the tons of questions I'll have along the way. They got me wanting one at HHAEFI this year.

    I have a 6 month or so plan to aquire the tools and talents needed for this project. The goal being to own the machine and the knowledge needed to use it effectively by that time. I can't express how grateful I will be to have any help you can give in getting to this goal. Thank you for the time you have already taken to read all of this. I look foward to contributing to this community when I have the experience to do so.
  2. swarfer

    swarfer Moderator Staff Member

    Trophy Points:
    Grahamstown, South Africa
    MK1 = slow, foam only
    MK3 = fast, and can cut plywood and balsa too
    pretty simple argument (-:
    There are a bunch of videos on using Sketchup +SketchUcam, I posted some extra links just the other day, just search for my recent posts.
    as I understand it, you get this all on a DVD that you get with the purchase.
    However, the open source plans should be out soon for the Mk3, so you don't buy a kit as such, but just what you need.

    as for mods, belt drive instead of threaded rod would be my first stop. Mk2 had that...
    motors with more power give you more speed, up to a point.
    ah Crash the Enabler strikes again...
    this is a great plan. I've got a bunch of things to do, and one of them is 'something CNC'. I do have some access to a large CNC router, but life is so much easier if one can just walk out to the garage and push buttons instead of driving across town at a mutually convenient time, drive back for the bits you forgot, and so on.

    I can tell you that the moment club members see your machine cutting out a plane in 10 minutes, they will all agree that the club purchasing a Mk3 will be a damn good idea. I find a lot of folks simply don't understand the ease of use and sheer speed of producing useful stuff that machinery can give you, until they SEE it in action.
  3. rcav8r

    rcav8r Moderator Staff Member

    Trophy Points:
    I had a MK1 with a belt Y-axis, and it cut balsa and ply just fine, and was fast too :) Have the MKIII now and like it a lot better. Main reason is the bit cuts from the top so it's easy to line up the work and see what's going on particularly with multi-cuts.

    Here's a thread I did on my belt-drive mod, but the pictures didn't survive the forum move :(

    If you have the cash , go for the III, If not the MKI is a great learning tool, and works really well, just not as "convenient" to use
  4. TigerPilot

    TigerPilot Well-Known Member

    Trophy Points:
    From day one I knew I'm not going to get the PP (PhlatPrinter) I. From day one I knew that the over-head gantry is the way to go. I had emailed Mark before there was even a talk about the PP III telling him I'm ready to buy a PP but I want it with an over-head gantry. His response was asking if I had been peeping into the Phlat Lab, meaning a PP with an over-head gantry was in the work. If you can afford it, and it may be that the new, open source, PP III will be closer in price to the PP I (I hope), then PP III is the way to go.

    Other advantages or things you can make easier in the PP III are: 1) wider parts can be cut, up to 27". 2) I have made circuit boards with great success (takes some practice initially). 3) With the PP III I cut wood, up to 3/4" so far, without tabs since it's tacked to the foam carrier.
  5. Flashsolutions

    Flashsolutions Active Member

    Trophy Points:
    Leesburg, Florida
    There are so so many reasons to go with the MK III vs the MKI.

    1. Construction - you can disassemble the MK III to replace parts
    2. Overhead vs cutting from underneath
    3. Bigger footprint for cutting full size 27" sheets of Depron
    4. Fewer mods required
    5. Fewer adjustments required
    6. Did I mention Construction, no? I'll mention it again just in case.
    7. Faster cutting speeds
    8. Easier to maintain
    9. The MKI was a first production unit and while it worked and we all learned a lot from building and tweaking it, it none the less resulted in many modifications to perfect it. The MKII built on that and the MK III refined it. The bugs have all been ironed out. The build process is easy to follow and well documented on the MK III.

    While cost may be a factor you have to consider, I would advise you to find a way to dig up the extra cash. In the long run it will be worth it. Mark and Trish put a lot of work into this. I seriously doubt they will ever make enough money off it to repay all of the time and expense they put into it. It is still a bargain considering the engineering effort that went into making it.

    I have had both. I currently have one of the first 3 MK III's shipped and I still use it often for prototyping and more. Making planes is one thing, but making control horns and accessory parts for the planes is another and the MK III with its overhead gantry is the only way to go in my opinion. With a Pony Router mod added to the MK III, I can and do cut MDF and other materials effortlessly and often.
  6. HatefulGravey

    HatefulGravey New Member

    Trophy Points:
    Thanks so much for the information. I'll talk about it with the guys and we will work out a way to get a MKIII. I thought about it more last night and if I have too I'll just find a way to pay for this one myself and wait for them to catch up to my though process.

    I'm lucky enough that the money wont be a the greatest hardship. I'll have to work out the details of where to keep it. I currently rent but my younger brother has a workshop I'm sure has room for this machine.

    I'm going back to learning more Sketch Up now. I'll be out of there in a few more hours. That program eats up tons of my time lately :D .
  7. iflyos

    iflyos Member

    Trophy Points:
    Pfafftown, NC
    Gravey, I can't add allot to the answers you already have, but I can tell you this...the MKIII is the way to go. I built an MKII and I now have a MKI (yea, I went backwards in the progression..long story.) While the MKI is capable, provided you understand and work within the limitations, I miss the MKII, and would LOVE to build an MKIII at some point.

    As far as where to keep it..priorities man! Get rid of the bed, and sleep on the floor. :)

    Seriously, though..if you go back and listen to some of our earlier episodes of the podcast, you will get allot of info about the Phlatprinters, as well as about Mark and Trish. They are great folks who also have committed themselves to providing outstanding products. Thats part of the reason that you don't find the build videos online. It's easier to make sure that the builder has the latest info if M & T just include that with the product, rather than have to try to update the videos if they are "out in the wild."

    By the way..if you need/want any specific info, just know the "Timcyclopedia Kingtanica" is only an email away :) BTW, you guys cracked me up with that title at HHAEFI..I still laugh about that!


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