Workhorse 3D Printer
Workhorse 3D Printer

Lead Screw vs Belts

The WorkHorse is a large customizable 3d printer platform for designers, builders, and makers. The XYZ Lead Screw motion system is an open-source design that can be adapted to specific materials and applications. In most cases, belt driven 3d printers are better suited compared to lead screw. But this isn’t most cases and the lead screw we selected to drive the WorkHorse isn’t your standard lead screw. We’ve tried a range of different styles of lead screw and had mixed results. We settled with a Igus high helix thread pitch with a 50mm lead.

If you’re looking for an advanced project like building a large 3d printer, the WorkHorse is an open-source design that you can customize for a specific application or project.

Specs

  • Build Volume – 650 x 350 x 350 mm
  • DIY 3D Printer Build – Customizable / Modular Platform
  • Motion System – XYZ Lead Screw Mechanism
  • Materials – FDM-Multiple Material Extrusion
  • Extrusion System – Bowden / Direct Drive
  • Materials – FDM-Multiple Material Extrusion
  • Electronics – Duet3D
  • Operating System – RepRap Firmware
  • Software– Simplify3D
  • Skill Level – Advanced
  • Machine Kinematics – Fixed Bed / Moving Gantry
WorkHorse Printer
WorkHorse Printer

WorkHorse Build Resources

The fixed bedmoving gantry is intended to make the 3d printer more scalable as the bed and z-axis mechanism becomes heavier.

  • Fixed Bed / Moving Gantry
  • X and Y-Axis Lead Screw
3D Printing at Reprap Festival
3D Printing at RepRap Festival

While most 3d printers use belt driven motion in the x and y axis to increase print speed but loses quality when more weight is applied to the gantry or carriage. The lead screw used on the Workhorse has a high helix pitch with multiple threads to allow increased print speeds while maintaining the quality provided from lead screw and ball screw motion. The system is particularly useful in applications that add more weight to the gantry or carriage. Materials such as clay, chocolate, plastic pellet extrusion or other foods can increase weight that is moved around which results decreased quality or print speeds. Workhorse Printer’s are available to purchase in Machined Component Kit, Hardware Kit or Complete Kit.

Workhorse Printer 1
Workhorse 3D Printer MRRF 2019
  • OPEN SOURCE
  • LARGE BUILD VOLUME
  • ADVANCED LEAD SCREW MOTION
  • MODULAR MACHINE DESIGN
  • CUSTOM MODS
  • CUSTOM BUILDS
  • ENCLOSURE
  • HEATED BED
WorkHorse 3D Printer

Carriage

Workhorse Printer 2
Workhorse DIY 3D Printer Carriage Design
Large 3D Printer Kit
Large 3D Printer Kit

WorkHorse Printer Design Updates

Frame

Workhorse Printer 3

We’re experimenting with changing the frame size and switching to a 3030 extrusion profile. We also made the side panels two inches wider to have more room in the electronics / Filament compartment.

Z-Axis Updates

WorkHorse 3D Printer V2 Gantry Plate Z axis lead screw
WorkHorse 3D Printer V2 Gantry Plate Z axis lead screw

We finally made a better z-axis lead screw mount.

Workhorse Printer 4

Download 3D Model

Workhorse large 3d printer with 3d printed lead screw nut mounts
workhorse large 3d printer build 3d printed lead screw nut mounts

The old version of the lead screw nut mounts were 3d printed. They would crack over time so the version is now made from aluminum.

Making Parts

The Workhorse X-Carriage design is a heavy duty solution for lead screw driven motion that uses MGN12H linear rails and 20×40 or 20×20 aluminum extrusions. 

Workhorse Printer 5
WorkHorse Carriage

The Workhorse 3d printer is available with custom mods and upgrades. We’ve several custom designed machines for many of our customers. If there is a specific size or requirement you just give us a shout. 

New Heated Bed
WorkHorse Printer Updates

Download Files

Workhorse Printer 6
WorkHorse Printer CAD

BOM

Lead ScrewDescriptionPart Number
X-Axis 2pcs. x 762mm Long Igus High Helix 10mm w/50mm LeadDST-LS-10×50-R 
Y-Axis 1pc. x 485mm Long Igus High Helix 10mm w/50mm LeadDST-LS-10×50-R 
XY-Axis 3pcs x Lead Screw NutsIgus Lead Screw NutsDST-JFRM009 
Z-Axis 2pcs x T12x2 Trapezoidal ACME Lead Screw w/ Brass Nut 500mm LongWK-Z-T12500
Linear Rails DiscriptionDiscription
1pc. x 450mm Long MGN12H 20mm x 20mm Hole PatternWK-Y-LRMGN12H400
2pcs. x 700mm Long MGN12H 20mm x 20mm Hole Pattern WK-Y-LRMGN12H400
4pcs. x 500mm Long w/ Two Carriage BlocksMGN12H 20mm x 20mm Hole Pattern WK-Y-LRMGN12H400
WorkHorse 3D Printer BOM

Buy WorkHorse 3D Printer Parts

Workhorse Printer 7
WorkHorse 3D Printer Parts
Workhorse Printer 8
WorkHorse 3D Printer Gantry Plates
Machined HardwarePrice $Source
Gantry Plates 3DDistributed
X- Axis C- Carriages 2pcs 3DDistributed
Y-Axis C- Carriage 1pc 3DDistributed
Y-Axis Motor Mount 1pc 3DDistributed
Y-Axis Idler Mount 1pc 3DDistributed
Hotend Mount 3DDistributed
Z-Axis Motor Mounts 2pcs 3DDistributed
Aluminum Build Plate$135.003DDistributed
WorkHorse BOM

Electronics

Buy Stepper Motors

See Stepper Motors

Duet3D Firmware Files

Download

We now recommend the Duet 3 Mainboard 6HC electronics by Duet3D.

Build Instructions

Here

Sourcing Parts For Your Workhorse 3D Printer

Sourcing Lead Screw

Sourcing Frame Components

Buying Frame Parts

Frame Assembly

Workhorse Frame Extrusions
Workhorse Frame Extrusions

The frame is made out of 2020 (20mm x 20mm) aluminum extrusions.

  • 20mm x 20mm
  • 4pcs 930mm Long
  • 6pcs 510mm Long
  • 10pcs 570mm Long
  • 3pcs 808mm Long

.

20mm x 40mm HFS5 Aluminum Extrusions (Misumi Brand)

4pcs 510mm Long

Frame: BOM

Frame BOM Part List

Frame ExtrusionsLengthUnitsDiscriptionMisumi Part #
2020 (20mm x 20mm)930mm Long4pcsHorizontalsHFS5-2020-930
2020 (20mm x 20mm) 510mm Long6pcsVerticalsHFS5-2020-510
2020 (20mm x 20mm) 570mm Long10pcsFrame WidthHFS5-2020-570
2020 (20mm x 20mm) 808mm Long3pcsBed SupportHFS5-2020-808
Gantry ExtrusionsLengthUnitsDescriptionPart#
2040 (20mm x 40mm)770.5mm Long2pcsGantry HorizontalsHFS5-2040-770
2040 (20mm x 40mm) 456mm Long
2040 (20mm x 40mm) 510mm Long4pcs.Z axis Linear Rail VerticalsHFS5-2040-510
Frame ComponentsTypeUnitsDescriptionPart#
Frame Brackets20mm Wide90pcsReversal Tabbed BracketsHBLFSNF5
T-Nuts (Misumi)M475pcsM4HNKK5-4
T-Nuts (Misumi)M5180pcsM5HNKK5-5
T-Nuts (Misumi)M375pcsM3HNKK5-3
Frame PricePrice $
Profile Extrusions$ 122.29extrusions and brackets w/tax and shipping
M5 x 10 Cap Screws (200pcs)$ 9.99225$
brackets$ 40.32
T-nuts$ 19.32
Total$ 191.92
Frame BOM

Frame Assembly

Workhorse Frame Step 1
Workhorse Frame Step 1
Workhorse Frame Assembly Diagram
Workhorse Frame Assembly Diagram
Frame Diagram Front View
Frame Diagram Front View
Workhorse Printer 9
Frame Diagram Front View

Gantry

Gantry Motor Plates
Gantry Motor Plates

Assembling The Gantry Plates

Part List:

  • 1pc. x Gantry Motor Plate
  • 1pc. x Gantry Idler Plate
  • 16pcs. x M5 x 14mm Long Screws
Gantry Motor Plates
Gantry Motor Plates
Gantry Plates
Gantry Plates
2040 Gantry Frame Extrusion Thru Holes
2040 Gantry Frame Extrusion Thru Holes
Y-Axis Carriage 2040 Extrusion
Y-Axis Carriage 2040 Extrusion Needs M5 Thread (Hand Tap or Get It From 3D Distributed)
2040 Gantry Frame Extrusion
2040 Gantry Frame Extrusion
Nema 23 Motor Mounting Plate
Nema 23 Motor Mounting Plate
Nema 23 Motor Mounting Plate
Nema 23 Motor Mounting Plate
Nema 23 Motor Mounting Plate
Nema 23 Motor Mounting Plate

Gantry Plates Before Gantry Frame And Motor

Gantry Plates Assembled To Frame
Gantry Plates Assembled To Frame

X-Carriage

X-Carriage
X-Carriage

X and Y-Carriages use 4 M3x6mm Screws

  • X-Carriage (X-Axis) 2pcs
  • Y-Carriage (Y-Axis) 1pc
  • M3x6mm Screws 12pcs (4 for each Carriage)
X-Carriage With Linear Rail
X-Carriage With Linear Rail

The x-axis carriage screws down to the 2040 Y-axis extrusion and rail. *Note* The y-axis 2040 extrusion must have hand tapped M5 threaded holes.

Y-Axis Assembly Mount To X-Carriage
Y-Axis Assembly

Linear Rails

The Workhorse Printer uses MGN12H linear rails with a 20mm x 20mm Hole Pattern.

BOM:

  • 500mm Long Z Axis (4pc)
  • 700mm Long X Axis (2pc)
  • 450mm Long w Y axis (1pc) 

Linear Rail Screw:

  • M3x9mm Long Screws 26 per X-Axis
  • M3x9mm Long Screws 14 for Y-Axis
  • M3x9mm Long Screws 18 per Z–Axis

Total M3x9mm screws  138pcs.

Install Y-Axis Assembly
Install Y-Axis Assembly
Attached X-Carriage To Linear Rails
Attached X-Carriage To Linear Rails
Attached X-Carriage To Linear Rails
Assemble Y-Axis Motor Mount To X-Carriage
Assemble Y-Axis Motor Mount To X-Carriage

Motor Mount to Carriage

  • M3x8mm Long Screws 4pcs
Assemble Y-Axis Idler Mount To X-Carriage
Assemble Y-Axis Idler Mount To X-Carriage
Assemble Y-Axis Idler Mount To X-Carriage
Assemble Y-Axis Idler Mount To X-Carriage
Assemble Y-Axis Idler Mount To X-Carriage
Assemble Y-Axis Idler Mount To X-Carriage
Assemble Y-Carriage To Y-Axis Linear Rail
Assemble Y-Carriage To Y-Axis Linear Rail
Assemble X-Carriage Insert
Assemble X-Carriage Insert

Igus dryspin lead screw nuts do not require lubrication. This is normal for Igus materials. If you have any sounds, vibrations or wear, then the problem is most likely in the alignment and assembly of the mechanical components.

Assemble X-axis Lead Screw
Assemble X-axis Lead Screw
 Assemble X-axis Lead Screw And X-Carriage Insert
Assemble X-axis Lead Screw And X-Carriage Insert
 Assemble X-axis Lead Screw And X-Carriage Insert
Assemble X-axis Lead Screw And X-Carriage Insert
Assemble X-Carriage Insert
Assemble X-Carriage Insert

X-Carriage Lead Screw Nut Insert 2pcs

  • Each Insert uses:
  • M3x35mm screws 4pcs
  • M5x55mm Long
Align & Square Carriage To Gantry
Align & Square Carriage To Gantry
Y-Axis Extruder Carriage
Y-Axis Extruder Carriage
Screw Down Y-Carriage To Y-Axis Linear Rail
Screw Down Y-Carriage To Y-Axis Linear Rail
Y-Axis Carriage Install
Y-Axis Carriage Install

Electronics

Stepper Motors

Heated Bed