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HolidayBuyer's Guide

Mosaic 3D printer birch plywood frame pieces

Carefully labeled

Steady...

Drama amid the television boxes

Piece by piece

Step one complete

57 screws

Hardware detail

Sturdy, but also fragile

Custom fit

Y-axis assembly

Linear rail assembly installed

Y-axis complete

Step one: assembling the frame.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
Each piece has a corresponding letter burned into it, making it easy to follow the instructions.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
The pieces fit together easily enough. We never had to force anything, and escaped with no broken pins, at least on this step.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
Our lab storage room actually hasn't been this organized in over five years.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
Coming together.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
The end result, sans hardware.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
The next part called for sliding tiny nuts into the slots on each piece, and then screwing them into place with tiny bolts, 57 times.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
Close-up of the nut-and-bolt layout. This step was a little tedious and challenging. It's also where any casual consumer might first find frustration. Some of those nuts were hard to put in place.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
The wooden assembly feels strong enough once it's all together, but you do need to be careful. This cracked pin is our one major casualty so far.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
Some of the slots for the nuts were such a tight fit that we had to scrap out a bit more clearance. This is the one time during the day where we had to alter the provided pieces.
Caption by / Photo by Rich Brown/CNET
Next step, putting together the Y-axis assembly. The wooden piece here came preassembled. This is the piece that holds the plate onto which we will eventually (hopefully) print our 3D objects.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
We'll mount a motor and belt system on this rail, which will drive the build platform back and forth inside the main housing.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
The Y-axis is assembled, and eventually we'll attach the build platform to that metal plate.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
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