Phil's Zonestar build

Search here for Sunhokey on my thoughts. A bunch of us on the Shapeoko forum bought them, see the thead there.
There is a strong following on the net and Thingiverse.

The printer is still going strong after a half a dozen spools of filement!

Edit: I see you already purchased it while I was typing!

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Looking forward to seeing your 3d printed projects and upgrades on here phil. Been looking at the cr10 models but probably not till it warms up again outside. Not allowed having my toys in the house :confused:

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Hey @PhilJohnson,

I recently purchased and assembled an Anet A8 and I have a couple of thoughts. First, I can’t really recommend it because it took a full day of building and troubleshooting. I also bought several upgrade items to make such a cheap printer better/safer, so the savings rapidly dissipated. When I say safety, I’m talking about literally not burning the house down with the power supply that comes with the A8.

One thing I can recommend about this or other similar printers that have such a massive following is that there are tons of reference materials for assembly, troubleshooting, upgrades, etc. That part is invaluable. I don’t really know if I could’ve done it without all of the YouTube videos and forums.

You’re obviously smart enough to pull off whatever you set your mind to, but I also know how busy you are. I just want you to be aware of what you might be getting yourself into with such a cheap printer. If you raised your threshold by about $150, you’d be about where I’m at, without needing to upgrade immediately and you’d have a much better printer right out of the box. This would allow you to start printing better and faster so you can get on with your life.

I would seriously look at the Creality CR-10 for that reason. It has a large print volume, better components and lots of forum and video support. With all that being said, of course you could be printing in a few days with a $180 printer plus some filament and accessories.

I’ll be interested in seeing what you do with a 3D printer after seeing what you’ve been able to do in such a short time with the laser.

EDIT: I think you just bought it while I was typing this…

We are here and available for you Phil while you are building your new printer. Let us know if you need help or advice.


For sometime I have suspected @PhilJohnson to be a robot and here is why:

  1. Family man with young age children
  2. Design guru 2D and 3D, awesome projects
  3. Metal machinist
  4. X-Carver
  5. Laser focuser
  6. Inventable’s Forum Wikipedia
  7. Webmaster
  8. Small business owner
    and now 3D printer
    See I knew it, the guys a dang robot as no sleep is required like the rest of us addicts.

Cannot wait to see your 3D printer projects and thanks for all the helpful information.

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My wife has told me on several occasions that a girlfriend would be cheaper and less time away from her.
Man, you just got to appreciate wife logic but I think it’s a trap.

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I have been 3d printing for over 5 years.
I use an Airwolf3d Axiom but I do not expect others to buy one.
However if you do get one that is not enclosed then get or make an enclosure for it.
The head of the 3d printer is sensitive to air flow. Even blowing lightly it will change radically. This will cause print issues.
If you have questions let me know. I have seen just about every issue. I have created all sorts of prints even done things out of rubber. Here is the most complex thing I ever did. (Everything except the horse and metal bits was 3d Printed.)


Stainless = sexy.

Just make sure both extruders are level. Let us know how it works out. Seems like a nice find.

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Also when you do get your printer setup check out the Airwolf wolfbite solution for the heated bed.
I use it and its great. I can do 3d printing directly on the glass and it works with PLA and ABS. The 4 oz bottles last a long time and you can put a simple thin coat on it and print several times. I highly recommend this as it saves you on buying blue tape and other expensive materials. Just make sure you do not cake it on too thick and do not contaminate the solution. If you switch from ABS to PLA wash off the glass with warm water (NO SOAP) When the glass is dry you can then put the solution back on and your ready to go. I have tried the tape and other solutions and this wolfbite works best and is fast.
Watch the video below. I do not put on as much as the girl in the video but the parts do come off just like in the video.

Another suggestion for those not wanting to use slicing software and not spend a lot of money on one like Simplify3d. The 3d slicing solution I have tried and used this:

It works well and I was able to do printing with it with clean and nice results.

I purchased a XYZ Davinci Jr 1.0 about two years ago. It has been sitting on the shelf most of the time. I let a friend borrow it for a few months and he returned it to me about 3 weeks ago. It has been running nearly nonstop ever since.

This printer can be had for $200 on Amazon. It definitely has its pros and cons but for a plug and play 3D printer I can not complain. I have only had one issue with it and that was the printer head clogged during a print. Since I cleaned it, it has not given me any further issues. I assume this could happen with ANY 3D printer and not just this one.

Before I purchased this unit, I had never touched a 3D printer. Until I let my friend borrow it, I might have only printed four things on it that had been downloaded from Grab-Cad. While finishing my Mechanical Design CADD Degree, I needed to go that extra step so I decided to use it for my presentation in the class and 3D print the ice cream scoop that I was assigned to draw in F360. This was my very first print designed by myself and it turned out perfectly and gave me a functional prototype for demo purposes for my presentation. (When I say Functional, I just mean it moves as the real one does, I would not try it on ice cream though.). I was very pleased with how it turned out and so were the instructors and other students.

During the process of printing the ice cream scoop, I found that the Green Masking Tape aka FrogTape works much better than the blue masking tape. (I have not tried any other methods as of yet other than the blue tape.) With the FrogTape, I can usually get multiple prints on the tape before having to replace it. So I am happy with the results of the FrogTape. I felt as if I was going to crack the glass bed when trying to remove the pieces with blue tape but this issue went away when I switched.

Currently I am printing my longest print. I will be sharing it here on the forum as soon as it is finished and I have been able to test it. I designed a custom dust shoe for the 611. The rough draft print came out well but the tolerances Just were not there and I broke a few layers. This did not surprise me much bc I had used the absolute roughest and fastest setting on the printer. (I am still tinkering and learning the capabilities of the machine so this first print was just an experiment to test for concept) That print took 8 hours. Since the proof of concept turned out well, I reconfigured the setting and the printer is halfway through my second attempt at the highest resolution at the slowest speed. This second model is turning out Much Nicer! All in all it looks like the print will take approximately 48hrs to fully print the shoe. But the detail is much higher and the body seems much sturdier since I raised the infill from 10% to 50%. The layers are also 0.1mm thick as opposed to 0.4 mm thick.

I am very pleased with how my design is coming out and can’t wait to test it to see how well it actually works on the 611. I will share more when I get further along with the project.

3D printing is great and it now looks like I have a new addiction. Lol.

The printer that I have is a great beginner printer for someone with no experience with 3D printers. Especially since it is Sooo easy to set up. This printer does have it shortcomings though. So an experienced individual will probably shy away from it. But if your new to the game and want a plug and play to print a few things or to just get your feet wet, then this might be a good candidate for you. It is not top of the line by any means but I feel as if I am getting my $$$$ our of it for the time being. I will most likely be adding another printer in the future for multiple reasons but will keep this one up and running also.

I wish you luck with your endeavors. I know that I am enjoying my 3D printer and hope that you enjoy yours just as much, if not more.

I am anxious to share my new dust shoe and will do so soon. And if anyone wants access to my STL file, I will be more than happy to share it with the community.

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To add one more bit of info.

To print from F360 all I had to do was click on the 3D print button and save the file. Next open the file in XYZWARE, the free program that comes with the printer, orient the part on the screen like I want it to print, adjust the settings to my preferences (or just use factory settings) and then send it to the printer.

From F360 to actually printing only takes less than 60 seconds once I figured out how simple it actually was. (More complicated prints take a little more time for the software to process the code)

This was not complicated by any means and I had zero issues with my first print with no help or no previous experience with the software or printer. Super simple.

Thanks. Ask away. :slight_smile:
Glad it has auto leveling.
One of the things mine does and its a life saver. Also saves time.

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I use MatterControl. Simple yet powerful with a lot of ability to customize it.

What I like about it is that you can use different slicer engines and it will text you when it is done printing.

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I keep going back and forth between the Creality CR-10 ($600 for the legit version) and the new Prusa i3 ($750). I figure rather than buy a $200 cheap china one im better off putting that towards a name brand reputable machine. I have seen too many horror stories of bad parts right out of the box or many upgrades needed to make it work right with the cheap ones. Hoping my wife ordered the Creality for Xmas but im not holding my breath lol

I have used it before years ago.
Good tool. I also met those who created it.

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I really like the Creality CR-10 due to the print area and great reviews but I also like the quad print head and support of the Prusa. Get one of each! Problem solved! :grin:

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If you use a multiple print head you have issues with level and heat.
Its best to use the PALETTE+ and have one print head.

I cannot use it as my printer uses 3mm only. The Palette uses 1.75mm

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That quad print head is sexy but their shipping is a joke, so I’m focusing on the Creality CR-10 and a few others now.

Yeah the $70 shipping doesn’t help on top of the $750 price tag. The CR-10 is $600 shipped