There are many methods to enclose a 3d printer including a variety of options that can be purchased off the shelf and with a little additional hardware one can create a very functional enclosure.
As a die hard DIY’er I seem to always search for my own way to do things and for this project it wasn’t any different.
I chose to use materials from local home improvement stores as well as a couple online sources for materials used in this build.
For the main frame of the enclosure I went with 1.25 in Deck Baluster material from Lowes. This Deck Baluster material is a tough durable composite material that was affordable and easy to cut and create parts used to assemble it into a rigid frame. The Deck Baluster material comes in a few colors and can be purchased here if you have a Lowes in your area of the country. There may also be other sources for this material that will work as long as the outer measurements are 1.25 in. I ended up purchasing 2 packs of 5 pieces for this build.
You can purchase plexiglass from local sources or buy it pre cut. I went with pre cut 1/8in x 24in x 24in pieces and hand cut to fit once I was ready to put the parts together based on the size of my workstation and after measuring clearances for my printer. Depending on your printer, sizes will be different, just verify you have enough room to the front, rear as well as sides and the top. It’s a good idea to slide your print bed all the way forward and back to measure how long to cut the parts for your frame. I left about 6 inches clearance for the front and rear to be safe. Each side needed about 4 inches clearance to allow plenty of room. You can get the 24in x 24in material here or look over other sizes that may work better for your build here.
STL files for printed parts
You’ll need the stl’s to print the parts to assemble the frame. There are a few parts needed such as corner brackets, plexi corners used to hold glued in washers that are used to hold in each wall of the enclosure to magnets mounted in each corner frame bracket, a few trim pieces for each edge of plexi an adapter that will allow you to place your encoder.card reader on the outside of the enclosure and a couple brackets that will provide mounting support for a top cross bar where you can mount a filament spool holder that lives outside the enclosure.
Within my slicer I also scaled the plexi trim pieces along the length to get the sizes correct based on my measurements. Measured the entire length needed and divided in half so they would fit on my hotbed.
As part of the build 3 magnets are also needed for each corner. I would suggest buying a few spares for the simple fact that magnets break very easily if allowed to snap together hard. And finally you’ll need some #6 flat head phillips screws to secure the magnets in each corner. You can pick up magnets here.
Stl files are in the public file archive here at prusamk2.com and can be accessed here.
After you’ve cut your frame material you’ll need to place them into the corners, all together you’ll need 8 3d printed corners which are all the same and can be rotated for each position of the frame assembly. The top corners mount where the magnet inserts for the top piece of the enclosure are facing up.
You will also need 4 printed plexi corner frame pieces for each corner of each plexi piece. I used a single drop of hot glue to secure those in place and it works very well. Finally you can print out trim pieces that frame each plexi sheet and make each piece of plexi more stiff and rigid. These frame trim pieces need to be printed in several pieces as on average the print bed is not large enough to print each piece in the size needed to frame the plexi.
Check out the photos below and hopefully they will get you on the right track and clarify the parts and how they are assembled for this enclosure frame.
Note: Optional. I also drilled a 25mm hole in my front plexi where I placed a 3d printed bulkhead that allows me to insert my finger to easily remove the front plexi.
Photos of completed Enclosure
Magnet in corner bracket and washer glued in plexi corner bracket
Optional 25mm drilled hole for finger bulkhead that allows for easy removal of front plexi.
That’s about it. There are many ways to build an enclosure, some more off the shelf and some more diy. The choice is up to you. It was a really fun project and fit a need that I’ve been wanting to fill for sometime now. If you have any questions please feel free to post them below. Remember, STL files can be downloaded over here…
Additional frame material sources
Update: found a source for the frame material in other locations besides the US.
As I locate more sources for the frame material I will post links to them in this area of this page.
You can also grab the stl files below…
A short video of the enclosure in use.