Z-Axis Assembly - Rods PDF Print Email

For this part you will need:

  • 12x M3 Nuts
  • 8x M3 Washers
  • 4x M3x16mm Cap Screws
  • 8x M3x22mm Cap Screws
  • 4x LM8UU Bearings
  • 2x 8mm Smooth Rods, 350mm Length
  • 2x rod-clamp printed pieces
  • 1x x-end-idler printed piece
  • 1x x-end-motor printed piece


In this part you'll be putting the rods on for the z-axis that the x-axis will slide up and down on.  You will want a 2.5mm allen wrench to tighten the M3 cap screws and 5.5mm wrench or socket to tighten down M3 nuts.  You will also need some sort of plumb line or small level.  All you need is a string a couple feet long and something to tie onto it for weight.  Here is where you will be after this step:


You'll want to start by getting the x-end-idler and x-end-motor pieces ready to put on.  Start by putting a couple M3 nuts into the hexagon-shaped holes on top of the pieces and then put M3x16mm cap screws with an M3 washer on it up through the holes from the bottom.  They only need to be started into the nuts.  These will be for the next step, it is just easier to put them in now.  You also need to put two LM8UU bearings into each of the pieces; One in the upper portion and one in the lower portion.  They are each held in with an M3x22mm cap screw and M3 nut.  They just need to be snug, if they are too tight the bearings can distort a little and affect the perforance of your printer.  This picture shows what they should look like when you are done:


 You will now put the rod-clamp pieces onto the z-mount pieces.  These will hold the top part of the z-axis rods onto the frame.  Put two M3x22mm cap screws through each of the holes in one of the z-mount pieces from the inside so the tip of the cap screw is pointing outwards.  Once the cap screws are through, put a rod clamp onto the ends of them.  With the rod-clamp on you should see an ~8mm hole between it and the z-mount piece.  Next, put a washer and an M3 nut onto each of the cap screws to hold the rod-clamp piece on.  They should not be tightened down yet.  Add another rod-clamp to the other z-mount like you did to this one.  Now, position the frame so that the front part of the frame is towards you.

Put an 8mm smooth rod through the two bearings in the x-end-motor piece.  Take it easy and don't force the rod into the bearings or you may ruin the bearings.  This may be hard to do if you have the cap screws that hold the bearings in too tight.  You could also just take the bearings out, put them onto the rods, then put the bearings back into the piece with the bearings on the rod.  After the piece is on the smooth rod, put the top part of the rod through the gap on the left side that you made between the rod-clamp and z-mount.  Put the rod up through the bottom and bring it a couple inches up through the hole, then slide it back down through the bar-clamp in the bottom part of the frame.  Adjust the rod so that the top of it is about 1/4" past the top of the z-mount piece.  You can now tighten down the two nuts to the rod-clamp so that the top of the rod is secure.  Put a rod through the bearings in the x-end-idler piece and do the same thing to the other side.

 You will now need to use a plumb line or small level.  The surface you are working on for this part needs to be level.  Use the plumb line or level and adjust the two bar-clamps at the bottom to make each of the rods vertically level (straight up and down).  You need to check if it is level from two sides; Check from the side you are working on(like in the picture below) and also the front or back.  Use the bar-clamp holding the bottom of the rod to move the rod closer or futher away from the frame.  Use the bar-clamp that holds the 440mm threaded rod on the bottom to adjust the rod forwards and back.  Once into position, make sure all the bar-clamps(four of them) end up tightened down to hold the two smooth rods and 440mm threaded rod on the bottom into place.


After the bar-clamps are tightened down, double-check the rods with the plumb line or level to make sure they are still vertically level.  All the various pieces that were loose on the frame should now all be tightened down against something.  Your printer should now resemble the first picture.  You are almost done putting the axes on and the next one will be quick and simple.

Continue here and put on the x-axis rods