BigBox Pre-Build

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What’s In the Box

For a list of everything you should have in your box, please refer to the Bill Of Materials.

Fixings Errors

Please Note: There was a mistake in the fixings-kits we had prepared for us. The kit was missing some items. These have been included in a separate bag in the "Stretch Box". If you find yourself running out of a particular type of fixing, or it seems to be missing all together, refer to the Fixings Errors List!


Make sure you have a suitable work-space to build your BigBox. There are a large number of components, parts and fixings and you'll need to have lots of space.

Tools required

4mm drill bit
3mm drill bit
Large flat-tip screwdriver, or large pozi drive
Hobby Knife
Multi-meter. (Digital is preferable and to two decimal places e.g. x.yy)
Ceramic screwdriver (2mm tip).
M2 - 1.5mm Allen Key/screwdriver
M2.5 - 2mm Allen Key/screwdriver
M3 - 2.5mm Allen key/screwdriver
M4 - 3mm Allen key/screwdriver
Flat tip screwdrivers (small and medium size)
30cm ruler
Needle-nose pliers.. the longer and thinner the better.
Small file
Lighter or other safe heat source

If you have the OctoPrint Upgrade

An SD card reader to write the OctoPi image

Recommended tools

Print removal tool, such as putty knife/pallet knife.
Digital vernier calipers.
Brass bristled brush.
Torch / Light... Anglepoise type (or larger) is useful.
Fine-Tip Permanent Marker.


Low-Tac sticky tape.
3-in-1 Oil or White lithium grease (for the bearings and rods).
Glass cleaner.
Lint free wipes.

Estimated Build Time

The whole build should take you about 2 days to complete.

Health & Safety

Never work on the BigBox when it is connected to the mains.
Check and double check all your wiring, especially the mains, use the supplied cover for the back of the IEC block. If you are unsure seek help from a qualified electrician.
The hotend gets hot - beware not to touch it.
The printer has numerous moving parts - when it is operating this can represent a trap hazard, be sure to keep fingers, limbs, hair, etc clear at all times.
If you are unsure about anything, please ask - the BigBox team are here to help.


Extruder - This is the whole assembly that sits on top of the X carriage. It is the mechanism that moves the filament into the HotEnd.
FDM/FFF - Fused deposition modeling / Fused filament fabrication. The process of 3D printing a part by depositing material layer by-layer
HotEnd - The component that heats up the thermoplastic and lays it down onto the print surface.
Home/Homing - This is when the printer recognizes where it is in 3D space.
Nozzle - Denotes the Brass or stainless component at the lowest portion of the HotEnd. This is ultimately where the plastic should come out...
Printhead - Is the whole assembly of the HotEnd, extruder and X carriage.
'Printhead Dock - Is the area at the back of the printer where the print head goes while heating and purging filament.
X Axis - Is the Left to right movement
Y Axis - Is the forwards and backwards movement
Z Axis - Is the vertical axis
Bed/Printbed - Is the sub assembly and surface into which the items are printed
Heated Bed - Is a PCB component that sits on the Z carriage and heats up. This is there to enable the printing of high temperature plastics.

Tips & tricks

The best Tip we can give is - Don't guess! If you are not 100% certain of how something goes together ask for help on the


There will be some helpful hints throughout the build manual where extra tips can help with specific assemblies.
Some of the assemblies are a little complicated. While it can be very frustrating when things don't fit together as you expect please do not use excessive force when installing parts. If things are not going as you expected please visit the forum at


The frame is held together using M3 x 18 screws and matching Square Nuts. These square nuts don't go directly into the frame, instead they live inside little black injection molded Nut-Traps. Their job is to remove stress-concentrations in the frame. They can be a little tricky at first, we have found that a little tape on the back can help to hold the nuts in place.
Do not over-tighten the nut-traps. As soon as you feel them tighten up, an extra quarter of a turn is all you need. Over-tightening can lead to failure of the part(s).

Hex-Half Nuts in Engraved Frame Holes

In a lot of cases when attaching to the frame we use holes with the engraved profile of a hex-nut. This engraving provides a little something for the nut to grip to when you are tightening up the screw. This means you should not have to use a spanner.

Where next?

Continue to the BigBox Parts Preparation
Home to the BigBox Build Manual Main Index