Initial Decisions

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    • #1053

      Hello Quentin,
      Thanks for the Morgan design – it has reignited my interest in building my own printer!

      It seems the single largest purchase is the electronics. Im looking at and I can see that “It works on Gen6, Ultimaker, RAMPS and Sanguinololu.”

      What are some things to consider when selecting the electronics? What version of RAMPS and and Sanguinololu are supported?

      The next biggest purchase seems to be the print head. What models are recommended or known to work with the Morgan?

      Also what do you think of the “Threadless Ball Screw” modification to the Morgan at

      Thank You,
      Don Park
      Portland, Oregon, USA

    • #1054

      I say stick with ramps 1.4 and a J-head. I use both on my current printer and they are both pretty solid performers with lots of support and good track records. For a first printer you’ll probably be well served by sticking with the less exotic stuff. Setting up a printer can be frustrating enough! Very rewarding, but frustrating at times.

      I got my j head from and I have no complaints. Maybe stick with a genuine Arduino Mega as well.

      You can follow some of our ball screw adventures here:

      I’m sure Q will respond soon but I thought I’d share my experiences.

    • #1058
      Quentin Harley

      I will echo. Especially it this is your first build, just going with J-head and RAMPS will make it simple to build and start up, especially since the source is already configured for RAMPS at the moment – and using Arduino hardware means no headaches to get it programmed.

      Welcome to the Morgan clan!

    • #1170

      Thanks for the help so far.

      two questions:

      the print head using a bearing of some sort but it does not appear on the KitBOM

      Click to access RepRap_Morgan_Arm_Theta_assembly_instruction_and_BOM.pdf

      “Bearing 61805″

      I have the 608ZZ10 bearings but that site doesnt seem to have a 61805.

      I went to the hardware store to get brass or copper tubing. Im in Oregon, USA and they only sell the tubes in imperial units.

      The tube specs are 15mm and 22mm. The tubes in my store are 5/8″ or 15.8mm and 7/8” or 22.2mm. Is that a coincidence that the sizes are so close or will the imperial sized tubes work with the morgan parts?


    • #1171

      You’ll need 2 of those 61805 bearings. One for the print head and one that goes around the 7/8″ copper where it goes through the top plate here:


      You can see it at the top of the 7/8 copper here:


      It’s not seated into the bracket in that pic. There is a sleeve that goes around the 7/8 pipe that the inner race of the bearing rides on.

      I’m also using all flanged bearings for the rest of the assy.

      You can read about the SAE stuff and some workarounds here:

      I’m also using 5/16″ threaded rod instead of the 8mm. It’s close enough and available in the US.

      Hope this helps out some!

    • #1172

      thanks for the tips, and the pics, hoff70!

      im just not sure where to buy these bearings. worked out for the other bearings but not these.

      After some googling I found this–6805-2rs-61805-2rs-6805-zz-61805-zz-ball-bearings-25x37x7.html

      would that part do?

    • #1173
      Quentin Harley

      Not sure where 61805 came from. I specified 6805 in the design…

      6805-2RS Bearing Deep Groove 6805-2RS

      This works nicely. You could even use the $103 ceramics they have on the site… For very high speed printing 😉


    • #1174

      Thanks for the answer and the link!

      Do you know Will Adams and is there a way to get this bearning and the URL into the Morgan KitBOM page that is linked from the Morgan wiki page?


    • #1175

      Also how do you feel about the ‘Chinese Family’/Ryan Altair modification? I am amazed that it eliminates both large drive wheels and the copper tubing completely. Is this the way the Morgan could go, or is there some benefit to keeping the X/Y servos on the lower platform?

      Thanks for the project in general! The Morgan makes me feel like a 3d printer of my own is within reach, and I am enjoying the learning/construction process.

    • #1176

      So sorry, it is 6805. I got my numbers confused as well 🙁

      I got all my bearings off ebay and sometimes things like that are available on amazon.

    • #1177
      Quentin Harley

      I like that he used what he had available to make it work. I am concerned about backlash, and the cost of the worm gears will more than offset the savings, but if you have it already, it does not anything, right?

    • #1178
    • #1182
      Quentin Harley


      What is the lifetime of 3D printed worm gears? I suppose you could make it easy to exchange. Consumables.

    • #1183

      Probably last a while but I’m sure backlash could be a serious problem!

      I think If I were going for a 100% printable X, Y drive herringbone gears would be a better avenue. Be a big-ass gear though! But hey, you could print it \o/

      Sorry to derail thread, but good luck donp!

    • #1192
      Quentin Harley

      Thanks Robert. Much appreciated

    • #1328

      The github repo for the Z-mount parts shows two versions of top and bottom, an 8mm version and 12mm version.

      How do I decide which to use? Thanks.

      • #1332
        Quentin Harley

        Depends on your choice of smooth rod and bearings. 8mm works just fine, but it seems 12mm is more readily available in some markets, due to its use on CNC routers.

      • #5737

        (Probably bad forum etiquette replying to an old reply)

        I have some salvaged smooth rods from printer consumables (some vast drums or other); these are approximately 400mm long with 8mm diameter ends and 12mm diameter for the majority of their length.

        Many questions:

        would these be suitable?

        what modifications to the triangles of the frame would I have to make? PVC tubes and their mount positions or the support part angles?

        The 452mm and 459mm pipe dimensions do not give the true length of hypotenuses : ]


        [Still fighting Mendel calibration]

    • #1329

      Also a question on the J-Head. It seems the Mark V is the latest, but there are variations on that such as the V-BV.

      1) Should I get a MARK V or are earlier models just as good?

      2) Do I need a seperate ‘hot end’ or is that part of the J-Head?

      3) Do I need a ‘cartrige heater’?

      This J-Head Mark V-BV is $55 but doesnt give the size of the extruder.

      4) I’ve seen Mark V models sold at extruder size 0.3mm, 0.4mm, and 0.5mm. Which would work best with the Morgan?

      Thanks again.

      • #1333
        Quentin Harley

        About the j-heads… You could use any of the later head designs.
        The method of heating is irrelevant. I have decimated more than 10 kg of filament using resistors only. It is fast and cheap, and I did not have to replace even one. Just make sure you put some heat transfer compound in the hole with the resistor.

        The nozzle size is a choice and a trade-off. 0.5 is for faster printing. Quality is quite good as well. 0.3 will give you high resolution printing, but at a cost. Speed is greatly reduced. 0.4mm is a compromise between quality and speed, and may be a good first choice, especially on a machine that is going to be used creatively, and not necessarily churn out lots of parts in the quickest time.

    • #1342

      The j head from will come with everything you need, sometimes reprap terms can get confusing. It’ll make sense once you get some parts in hand.

      I also use a .4mm orifice and it works well and can make some sweet looking prints! You’ll also need to specify what size filament you’re going to use. Most bowden tube setups (As opposed to having the extruder directly on top of the hotend like a Prusa or similar) use 1.75mm filament. I think a 1.75mm hotend from costs a little extra.

      You’ll also need some Kapton tape for holding the resistor/heater and thermistor in the hotend. I like the rolls that are about 2″ wide. Can’t remember the metric equivalent… You can cut some into strips for wrapping the nozzle and then use the wide roll for covering the build plate \o/ Plus some thermal paste like Q says.

      Oh yea, the “B” in “VB” specifies brass as some newer ones seem to be using aluminum for the nozzle. If you decide to go with another supplier rather than make sure you get one with the cooling fins and the hollow allen screw holding the liner in.

      Since this is your first printer I’d say spend the $$ and get the real deal from the link you provided. .4mm nozzle/1.75mm filament and you should be all set!

      Hope this wasn’t too confusing :O

    • #1350

      Q.Harley and hoff70, thanks very much for the extra detail. Now I can take the next steps on building the Morgan.

    • #1351
      Quentin Harley

      When going for 1.75mm filament, choose an extruder to match. I sudggest using something like the reprappro mendel mini extruder, or something like an airtipper.

      I am experimenting with airtripper at the moment, and will publish a modified version of it soon.

    • #1359

      Sorry if I jumped the gun recommending a 1.75mm hotend. I would check and see which diameter Q uses, I can’t remember at the moment.

      The diameter of filament you plan on using will also dictate what size tubing you use for the bowden tube as well and I’m not sure what size the printed bowden retaining collars are for either.

      Like Q says, it will also make a difference in your extruder, particularly the hobbed bolt or drive gear that contacts the filament.

      Just make sure that your hotend, bowden tube and fastening hardware, extruder drive and filament (of course :O) are all either 1.75 or 3mm.

      I’d go with what Q recommends. It’ll surely save you some headaches when beginning to print because you’ll have a path to follow \o/

    • #5617

      A year later I have dusted off the pieces I’ve gathered and I’m looking to make more progress. What I’m stuck at now is the pattern on the pieces of wood to follow to mount the PVC pipes. I’ve got the end-pieces printed out, but I dont have a guide for where on the wood they should be screwed into.

    • #5621
      Quentin Harley

      If you look on the git sources, there is a DXF folder in which you will find the platform designs. You can use it as a guide.

    • #1190

      About the bearings:

      My “fault”. 61805 and 6805have the same dimensions (and price). The 61805 is DIN 125, while the 6805 is JIS B 1521.
      I’ll note the interchangeability of both types in the extended BOM.

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