When it comes to 3D printing, the square cube law is notyour friend. If you double the size of a printed part, it will have eight times the volume—dramatically increasing the time it takes to print. That doesn’t necessarily mean it will take eight times as long to print, as volume isn’t directly proportional to print time, but it will be a massive increase. The best way to overcome that is by using a high-flow extruder and a large hot end nozzle, which is exactly what Ivan Miranda is doing with the massive 3D printer that he is building from scratch.
If you’ve seen any of Miranda’s other projects, you know that he likes to 3D-print gigantic parts. On a conventional 3D printer, he’s limited by both the available build volume and the time it takes to print with a small hot end nozzle. He’s solving both of those problems with this 3D printer build, which is essentially a scaled-up Prusa i3 design. The bed size is a whopping 800 x 500 mm—more than twice that of a standard Prusa i3. He even ordered a custom heater to cover the entire bed. To avoid the high-cost of linear rails and bearings, Miranda has the bed riding on special wheels that fit into the grooves of aluminum extrusion.
If he was using a conventional hot end, it would take a very long time to print a part that uses even half of that huge bed. To speed things up, Miranda is planning on using an E3D Hermes SuperVolcano hot end. That comes with a very wide 1.2mm nozzle, which is three times larger than a typical 0.4mm nozzle. That does, of course, mean that he won’t be able to get as much fine detail. Quality will also likely suffer from the weight of the bed. But that’s a worthwhile compromise when the goal is to print enormous parts. Miranda is still working on this project, so we can’t tell how well it prints yet. But we’re excited to see how it performs once he’s done. If you are too, be sure to subscribe to Miranda’s YouTube channel to follow along with the build.