Jul.10, 2012

MakeSLC maker space co-founder James Howard and his two partners Tim Anderson and Devin Hales have launched an open hardware project on Kickstarter.

This project, called the Elefu RA, is a 3D printer controller board with many cool features. It is designed to be affordable and expandable and also very easy to use. It includes features such as screw terminals for easy connection, lighting control, support for head bed and can run up to three extruders. The board will support any current firmwares used with Arduino Mega based boards, given some configuration and pin remapping.

Here are the features:

  • Screw terminals for easy connection
  • MP3 sound controller add-on available
  • Lighting control - up to 64 RGD LEDs
  • Status updates via lighting
  • Modified Marlin firmware pre-installed and configured for typical 1-extruder machine. You can run up to 3 extruders
  • 5 PWM driven MOSFET outputs with indicator leds
  • 2 - 12V MOSFET outputs for heated beds (10A per board fused) controlled by one pin
  • 3 - 12V MOSFET outputs fused together at 10A for extruder cores
  • One 5V PWM output fused at 5A with 5V rail
  • Buzzer - Beeps when using Elefu Control Panel menu for feedback.
  • Reset button for MCU
  • Up to 6 Elefu A4988 Stepper Drivers. X,Y,Z and up to 3 Extruders.
  • Elefu A4988 Stepper Drivers do Full,Half, Quarter, Eighth, Sixteenth micro-stepping support.
  • RA is pin compatible with pololu A4988 Stepper Drivers
  • Power on LED indicator
  • 4 Thermistor inputs measure temperature of heated bed and 3 hot ends
  • 6 Limit switch inputs with ground and 5V for optical or mechanical end-stops
  • Dedicated +3v3, +5v and +12v outputs fused at 5A per rail for additional components including light ring, fans, MP3 sound controller, lighting control kit, camera IR trigger and any custom uses you can think up.
  • Camera IR trigger kit available to use with marlin-supported remote camera trigger gcode command.
  • LED light ring
  • FTDI USB for programming the ATMega2560 and uploading custom firmware with dedicated TX and RX LEDs for communication indicators
  • ATMega2560 built in. All unused pins mapped to board with +5V, GND
  • ICSP pin header for direct AVR programming
  • ATX power supply input - takes 24 pin and either 4pin or 8 pin connector for a maximum of 36A of current on the 12V rails and 5A each on the 5V and 3v3 rail, with 500ma of standby power for essential components
  • Power supply can be turned off via software when printer is finished printing

Elefu control panel Add-on features:

  • Rotary encoder with push button switch to control menus and operate your printer without a computer
  • SD card support - Print from SD card, no computer needed to run printer
  • Remote reset button for emergency stops
  • LCD Display with menu system for control of printer

Check them out on Kickstarter and what you can get for your pledge.


Posted in 3D Printer Accessories



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Jake Hill wrote at 7/17/2012 3:06:09 AM:

That is one awesome board and they just lowered shipping on International orders.

James Howard wrote at 7/13/2012 8:01:26 AM:

Thanks for help spreading the word. Here is a new video showing the features of the control panel in more detail. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gmS9BrCbv9o&feature=plcp and go to our Kickstarter here: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/104819283/ra-3d-printer-controller-by-elefu

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