Cracked side-panel, no threadlock

Discussion in 'Tool heads & ToolChanger' started by KHH, Nov 24, 2020.

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  1. KHH

    KHH Member

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    I noticed one of the side-panels has started to crack from where it is bolted. I know these bolts are not tight, as I literally tightened them till I could not get a finger nail under the washer, and then 1-8th turn more. What material are these side panels? I have had to drill the leading edge of the crack to stop it running.

    Is there an option to buy metal side panels instead? A one-off request to have one cut is rather pricey. E3D should sell these in metal, or choose a less brittle plastic.
     
  2. Ben Kay

    Ben Kay Well-Known Member

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    Noticed the other day, I have the same...also used no thread lock and are finger tight....disappointing.
     
  3. W1EBR.Gene

    W1EBR.Gene Well-Known Member

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    I have also had problems with my side panels. e3d replaced one of them, but since then I have noticed that every one is cracked. The panel's job is to stiffen the frame, so they can't be attached too loosely.

    Another large hobbyist printer also had problems with their plastic side panels and switched to an aluminum skin over plastic material ( variant of polyethylene?). I don't know if that has worked out better for their customers or not.

    Lexan (polycarbonate) is less brittle than the acrylic e3d is using but also reacts strongly to plastic solvents.

    One reason we have acrylic panels may be the e3d has laser cutting tools which can cut acrylic panels. The BigBox used slightly thinner acrylic panels for the body.

    @Greg Holloway, were the acrylic panels annealed after they were laser cut? The cracks remind me of stress fractures. If not, I wonder if annealing would eliminate a contributor to the problem.
     
    #3 W1EBR.Gene, Nov 25, 2020
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2020
  4. Greg_The_Maker

    Greg_The_Maker Administrator
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    We don't have the capacity to produce the number of panels required in house, they are produced for us offsite. We have recently swapped to supplying PC panels in place of the acrylic.
     
  5. dc42

    dc42 Well-Known Member

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    I think one of the factors that causes cracking may be that the structure uses 5 feet and isn't rigid enough not to skew if it is placed on an uneven worksop. Mine certainly does - I can see this as an apparent twist in the height map, caused by the top 2 side bars not being parallel. This skew will stress the side panels.

    I have it in mind to add a 3060 bar at the bottom front for extra rigidity, and then replace the 2 front feet by a single foot under the middle of that bar.
     
  6. KHH

    KHH Member

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    Can I buy the polycarbonate panels?
     
  7. Greg_The_Maker

    Greg_The_Maker Administrator
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    Just for a bit of clairty, we are still shipping acrylic panels. Once they have run out we will be swapping to PC.

    We do not sell the panels seperately.
     
  8. KHH

    KHH Member

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    That seems a bit unfair, this is not a cheap machine, and I feel like a beta tester.
     
  9. KHH

    KHH Member

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    @Greg Holloway I have opened a support case, as I feel really that this is unfair, my rigidity is compromised, because I cannot tighten the acrylic panels, and they are cracking anyway.
     
  10. Greg_The_Maker

    Greg_The_Maker Administrator
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    Maybe I should answered differently; we do not sell the panels seperately, however if they are deamed to be faulty they can be replaced under warranty.
     
  11. W1EBR.Gene

    W1EBR.Gene Well-Known Member

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    @Greg Holloway , would you mind posting here when the PC panels are being shipped?
     

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