WAAM Question

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We're considering going prime time with the WAAM related to house construction - as in doing spiral staircases, a WAAM pellet stove, beams, etc.

Do you agree with my cost prediction of approximately $1/lb of product?

Cost of shielding gas is $9/8 hour shift, about $1/hour. Deposition rates go up to 20 lb per hour. See Welding Deposition Rate. This means one spool is used up per 2 hours. $46 in metal, $2 in gas. So about 4% is shielding gas.

If that is the case, that is quite worth it if complex geometries can be produced. Are there any particular challenges? In your paper you have a current feedback mechanism - but is that even needed? Tuning the speed and feed should be acceptable in bulk printing, no? Just like in plastic printing - there is no 'equivalent of current feedback' as a general practice.

We have the 1" rod-based Universal Axis, which allows us to implement WAAM easily including provisions for spatter shielding.

Do you see any specific issues coming up that make this much more challenging than a simple job of mounting a MIG gun on an XYZ gantry? This seems like super low hanging fruit for a decent product. It seems that in about 3 prototypes in 3 months of full time work we can nail this to product-level, so I am considering putting such into our budget surrounding the Seed Home 2. What do you think?