1. What is RepRap?
RepRap is a general-purpose self-replicating manufacturing machine. RepRap takes the form of a desktop 3D printer capable of printing plastic objects. Since many parts of RepRap are made from plastic and RepRap prints those parts, RepRap self-replicates by making a kit of itself - a kit that anyone can assemble given time and materials.
4. Can I build a RepRap from scratch?
Yes. Many people have built 3D printers "from scratch" using whatever parts they can find. They are called RepStraps.
5. Where can I learn more about the history of RepRap?
RepRap was conceived of and founded by Adrian Bowyer in 2004. On the RepRap wiki, the Developer Bookshelf collects three important resources about the early history:
(1) A History of RepRap Development is a 1790 page archive of posts from the RepRap Development Blog
(2) Hydraraptor - The story so far includes 935 pages of nophead's work on RepRap
(3) Diary of a Technocratic Anarchist contains 925 pages of Forrest Higgs's work on RepRap
Gary Hodgson, who archived this work, writes: "Much of the information found in the earlier RepRap blogs is still very relevant today and makes for invaluable reading for anyone interested in developing parts and printers or interested in how the project has reached the state it currently is in."
7. Has anyone had experience with vendor XXX?
Before asking this, please search the forums for "vendor XXX" and also look at the RepRap Buyers Guide. If that does not answer your question then please feel free to ask.
8a. Where can I buy printed parts for a RepRap? 8b. Where can I buy non-printed parts for a RepRap? 8c. Where can I buy a full kit for a RepRap?
For sourcing parts check out the RepRap Buyers Guide, the For Sale section, and ebay.
9a. What is the best hot end? 9b. What kind of hot end should I get?
Please see Hot End Comparison on the wiki.
11a. What software is needed? 11b. What is a slicer? 11c. What is GCODE? 11d. What is firmware?
There are many different software packages in use. In general the software package(s) must perform four tasks:
(1) CAD software is used by a designer to create a 3D model, which is saved as an STL file.
(2) A slicer converts the 3D model to GCODE.
(3) Printer controller software sends GCODE to the printer over USB.
(4) Firmware running on the printer controller interprets the GCODE and controls the motors and heaters on the printer itself.
Some packages will perform exactly one of these functions, other packages will perform several. Software (1-3) usually runs on a standard PC (windows, mac, unix), while software (4) usually runs on a microprocessor (such as an Arduino) on the printer controller. For more information see: Useful Software Packages, CAM Toolchains, RepRap GCODE, and RepRap Magazine: Issue 1.
36. Can a RepRap completely replicate itself?
No. While a RepRap can make many of its structural and mechanical parts, and even its own circuit boards, it cannot yet make practical motors, electronic components, or extruders. But people are working on it. See for example Convergence to self replicating and BOB Simpson.
40. How do I edit the Technical Q&A?
Any admin can edit this post. If you would like to see something updated or changed, please PM an admin or post a request in the Administration, Announcements, Policy subforum.
Edited 10 time(s). Last edit at 03/22/2016 09:54AM by MattMoses.