The biggest inkjet printer ever

Big Printer

Big Printer

The other day I wondered what people have done with their InkShields1 2  Then I got to wondering what people were doing to mount their InkShield printer heads and move them around.  Then I thought… hey!  It would be pretty awesome to attach an InkShield printer head to a Polargraph / DrawBot gondola.

I could see how an InkShield might improve a Polargraph.  You could theoretically have a small sensor to test the ink levels and pump more ink in from a larger reservoir – and never worry about a pen running out of ink again.

I could see how a Polargraph might improve an InkShield.  With a DrawBot string setup, you wouldn’t need a huge or expensive XY gantry – just a lot of string, two motors, and some other bits and bobs.

Posts in the DrawBot Adventure Series
  1. Wanna make a DrawBot?
  2. DrawBot Resources and Links
  3. DrawBot, the Adventure Begins
  4. DrawBots for the slow learner
  5. DrawBot - Parts Ordered!!!
  6. DrawBot - The Breakdown
  7. DrawBot - Parts Shipped!!!
  8. DrawBot - The Plan!
  9. DrawBot - The Hacks
  10. DrawBot - The Delivery?
  11. DrawBot - The Delivery, Part II
  12. DrawBot – The Delivery, Part III
  13. DrawBot – The Assembly, Part I
  14. DrawBot – The Software, Part I (and an existential conversation)
  15. DrawBot – The Delivery, Part IV
  16. DrawBot – The Assembly, Part II
  17. DrawBot – The Assembly, Part III
  18. DrawBot – The Assembly, Part IV
  19. DrawBot – Design Considerations
  20. DrawBot – Halp!!! No - seriously, a little help?
  21. DrawBot – The Face Palm
  22. DrawBot – The Delivery, Part V
  23. DrawBot – The Silver Lining of Failure
  24. DrawBot – The Delivery, Part VI
  25. DrawBot – The Assembly, Part V
  26. DrawBot – The Assembly, Part VI
  27. DrawBot – Printed Parts
  28. DrawBot – The Assembly, Part VII
  29. DrawBot – The Operation, Part I
  30. DrawBot – The Assembly, Part VIII
  31. DrawBot – The Breakdown, Part II
  32. DrawBot – Printing!
  33. DrawBot – Printing, Part II
  34. DrawBot – Calibration
  35. DrawBot – Pen Selection
  36. DrawBot – How to Recover from a Stalled Print!
  37. DrawBot – Drawing Success(ish)!!!
  38. DrawBot – Onwards and Upwards!
  39. DrawBot – Another Successful(ish) Drawing!, and an Update
  40. Restarting a Stalled DrawBot Drawing
  41. TSP FTW!
  42. Excellent DrawBot Slides
  43. Another Drawing Robot!!!
  44. DrawBot Practice Tip: A Watched Pot
  45. The biggest inkjet printer ever
  46. Why do DrawBots draw on walls?
  47. Maze Code + Polargraph?
  48. Ideas for improving my DrawBot
  49. DrawBot Aesthetic Re-Design Ideas
  50. The Eagle Has Landed
  51. Every Body Needs a Skull
  52. I think I know what I want to draw next...
  53. This project is not going to overengineer itself
  54. Overengineered Spools
  55. Overengineered Stepper Motor Mounts, Filament Guides
  56. Overengineered Bolt Endcaps, Case Holder
  57. Sourcing DrawBot Parts
  58. DrawBot - A Tour!
  59. DrawBot - A Preview
  60. Building an Arduino Drawing Robot - On The Cheap
  61. DrawBot - Printed Parts Tour
  62. Unidentified Foam Object
  63. Arduino Powered Drawing Robot - Take 2 (Or 3)
  64. DrawBot, now ACTUALLY wall mounted!
  65. Drawing Robot Pen Holders, Calligraphy Pens, and Thought Experiments
  66. Ideal Qualities in a Drawing Robot Pen Holder
  67. Enough talk! Finally a pen holder!
  68. DrawBot Pen Holder Post Mortem
  69. To Maker Faire!!!
  70. Skipping! How could I forget the skipping?!
  71. Drawing Robot Penmanship
  72. PlotterBot at Maker Faire Bay Area 2013!
  73. - a new site dedicated to drawing robots
  1. An InkShield is an Arduino shield that allows the Arduino to control an inkjet cartridge. []
  2. Photo courtesy of iLEZ iLEZ []

4 Responses to “The biggest inkjet printer ever”

  1. Michael Cook says:

    That would give you a much higher resolution than Polargraphs have now and speed up printing.

    The problem I would expect is that you would suddenly need to keep the gondola vertical (or at least the same orientation). Suddenly having the gondola rotated 5 degrees compared to straight up and down would be an issue.

  2. MakerBlock says:

    @Michael Cook: I haven’t had a lot of trouble keeping the gondola vertical. I use several AA batteries as weights on my gondola which keep it vertical. It does have a little side-to-side motion, but that’s one of the tradeoffs, I suppose.

  3. Michael Cook says:

    I just got my Polargraph working well in the last week or so. The gondola stays mostly vertical, but I’ve seen it a few degrees off. I don’t have any weights on it though.

    You could have some fun with an ink shield though. You could print on surfaces (like directly on walls) that you’d never be able to print on normally.

  4. MakerBlock says:

    @Michael Cook: Do you have pictures or a blog post about your ‘bot?! Please e-mail with them so I can add them to my DrawBot page! I’d love to see what you’re working on. Also – what gondola design do you use? I’m using John Abela’s, but I think I need to design something for my particular setup.

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