Monitoring your 3D-Printer with a Raspberry Pi is nothing new, thanks to applications like OctoPrint. However, maker Kutluhan Aktar managed to tackle the process himself using a microcontroller with his Raspberry Pi Pico-powered 3D printer monitor. This project connects the Pico to the internet to relay notifications about the data it tracks and is housed inside a custom printed T-800 Terminator-shaped shell.
This isn’t the first time we’ve covered a project developed by Aktar—this past February, we published an article featuring his Raspberry Pi weather station that uses AI to make air quality predictions. According to Aktar, this project was developed for his Creality CR-6 SE 3D printer, which has no Wi-Fi support or error notification system for print issues. With the help of a Pico and a custom web server, Aktar developed his own solution that sends notifications using Telegram.
Aktar was kind enough to provide plenty of juicy details about how the system goes together. A full parts list consists of a Raspberry Pi Pico, DFRobot HuskyLens AI Camera, WIZnet Ethernet HAT, Raspberry Pi 3B+, Keyes 10mm RGB LED 140C05 module, Sparkfun Buzzer module, Creality CR-6 SE, USB buck converter board, and a Xiaomi 2000 mAh 3Pro Type-C Power Bank.
The HuskyLens camera module tracks the movement of the 3D printer’s X-axis, Y-axis and Z-axis. This data is collected by the Pico, which is then relayed through the WIZnet Ethernet HAT to a web server running on a 3B+. Aktar confirms that a Raspberry Pi 4 B would work just as well in its place. This Raspberry Pi web server is also responsible for sending notifications to Telegram.
The Pico cannot supply power to both the RGB LEDs and HuskyLens AI camera. To alleviate this issue, AKtar uses an external Xiaomi power source with a USB buck converter to supply power to all modules.