Blog Post 3 GRBcelL BioPrinter

This week was a crazy week, we namely worked on rapid prototyping and problem solving. While this week was bound to be chalked full of issues, and it was, we also developed some great designs and had a blast working as a team to solve difficult problems on machining and efficiency. The problem we had to solve this week centered around the question: what can be mounted on to a gantry as a head that can universally hold any size and shape of syringe? Throughout the week, the team worked to design, draft, prototype and test an assortment of answers to that simple question. Here are some early stage drafts:

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The first major design was a wacky one. The idea was to have essentially a crab claw like pincer with a set of concentric semicircular holes to match the size of the syringe it was grabbing:

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While in discussion on the successes and flaws of the printed model, a different design was discussed and tested. While the first print of the model failed, its remnants became a good proof of concept that the design might work. The core of the design rests as having 3 main components. One of the components is a metal base attached to the gantry as the head. The two other components are inserted above and below the lip of the syringe where a user would rest their fingers to form a grip. These pieces would have to be 3D printed for whichever syringe a printer would intend to use, but the basic design remains the same. Similarly to how a bit can be switched in a drill, the plastic holder would be switched to match imputed syringes. Utilizing the lip, the second design grounds the syringe to the machine. As the design was tested, it was changed and made more efficient. Initially the pieces were attached with screws and bolts, then the components were slimmed down and changed to attach with sliding rails. The final design used both sliding rails and removable pop in mechanisms due to the shape of the plastic.

Below are the later designs of the head:

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Most of the week was spent designing and refining the model, and other minute changes will continue into next week. That being said we had a blast prototyping and designing.

– Jonathan Palumbo 6/14/19