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Duet - Arduino Due Compatible 3D Printer Electronics

Discussion in 'News' started by reprap aggregation pipe, Dec 2, 2013.

  1. The Duet is a new 3D Printer controller board that is compatible with the Arduino Due. It has been developed by Andy Hingston and Tony Lock from Think3dPrint3d in conjunction with RepRapPro and with much advice from Chris Palmer (Nophead). This 3D Printer controller combines the Arduino Due microcontroller with 4 stepper motor controllers, Ethernet, Hi-Speed SD card slot and more.
    Duet Main board
    An additional expansion board offers a further 4 stepper motor controllers to allow for a total of 5 extruders or up to 8 axis drives.
    Expansion board for up to 5 extruders in total
    Hardware Overview

    The Duet runs the 32 bit, ARM core SAM3X8E microprocessor, as found on the Arduino Due. This is a step change from existing controllers using 8 bit mcroprocessors and leaves loads of overhead to do cool things (like run a webserver, run delta bots much faster etc)

    Duet Connections
    3D Printer hardware control

    On the main board are 4 Allegro A4982 stepper drivers (X,Y,Z,E0), 3 FETs (Heated Bed, E0, Fan), 2 Thermistor inputs (Heated Bed, E0), 4 Endstop channels (X, Y, Z, E). The stepper drive current is electronically controlled with an I2C Digital potentiometer. As an alternative to using screw terminals there are double rows of pin headers for two wiring looms, 1 for the headed bed and one for the rest of the printer. This allows for the easy use of wiring looms to simplify printer assembly.


    The USB port is a Hi-Speed A/B type allowing for standard for USB control from a PC and potentially support for USB devices in the future. The SD card socket is fully SD 2.0 compliant, supporting faster access and cards up to 32 GB. A 10/100T Ethernet port allows for network control via an on-board web server.


    Power in comprises a 12-24V main input along with connections to control a standard ATX power supply. On board the Duet can use USB for 5V, incoming 5V from the ATX power supply and it has an inbuilt 2A switching power supply to provide 5V to support future expansion (for example powering a connected USB device).

    Expansion board

    The expansion board has a further 4 A4982 stepper drivers (E1, E2, E3, E4), another I2C digipot, 4 FETs (E1, E2, E3, E4) and corresponding thermistor inputs. It also has a header exposing 3 Serial channels, SPI bus and 2x I2C buses for further expansion.
    Expansion board connections

    Open Hardware

    The Duet hardware design is licensed under the CERN OHW License 1.2: the design is free to be distributed and modified within the terms of this license. All the design files are here on Github.


    Not only is it Open Hardware but it was completely designed using the Open Source software package KiCAD so hacking and building on this design its accessible to all.
    A detailed blog post on the hardware design will follow.

    Software Overview

    The Duet runs RepRap Firmware, a new C++ firmware by Adrian Bowyer. The firmware can be compiled with the Arduino IDE (tested with 1.5.4) or Eclipse and uploaded like other firmware, but the aim is for much of the printer specific information to be set by Gcode which is read on machine start from the SD card.

    The software supports receiving GCode from 3 locations:
    1. Over the USB serial port (as current 3D printer controllers do) - making it compatible with software such as Pronterface and Repetier host.
    2. From the SD card, which also stores the web server files and the config files.
    3. From the Ethernet interface via the webserver:
    RepRap Firmware web interface

    RepRapPro have a video here showing the web interface in use with the Ormerod printer.
    The software is adding new features daily, the most recent being added alpha level support for multiple extruder printing - see the T3P3 github, RepRapFirmware, multi extruder branch.
    Here is a picture of the first dual extruder print from a Duet and expansion board combo. I will add a video when I have a chance to edit it!


    Where to get it

    We will stock our Web Shop tomorrow with a limited number of the first Duet production run available for immediate purchase, with expansion boards to follow next week. A larger production run is underway so don't despair if you miss the first batch.

    Continue reading...
  2. GeoM528

    GeoM528 New Member

    May 19, 2014
    Maplin is a good choice, but I purchased the PRUSA I3 3D printer. Undeniably, 3D printing is far better than desktop inkjet printers; no more cartridges and paper needed. We, prototyping hobbyists, use 3D printing filaments like ABS and PLA, HIPS, PVA or elastic materials like this http://www.3d2print.net/shop/3d-printer-filament/elastic-filament/

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