Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Octave 3D Printer Enclosure mini-Review

After trying several home-baked options for our lab Afinia 3D printer, I purchased a Octave 3D printer enclosure from We wanted some way to control the air currents and air temperature around the printer. Our lab can be drafty and prone to big temperature fluctuations depending upon how hard the AC is blowing and if the sun is particularly strong. The Octave enclosure seemed like a very reasonably priced option.
Afinia happily printing away in its new home

The enclosure arrived pre-assembled in a big cardboard box within a few days after ordering. I think I was fortunate that I ordered it quickly after seeing the advertisement- Octave's website says they are currently back-ordered now.

The enclosure is a nicely designed ABS plastic box, with a clear plastic door. There is a slick trap door on the top for loading new filament into the extruder head, complete with a slot allowing for free motion during printing. My only nitpick would be to make the door another inch or two wider to the left, to allow for easier filament loading when the print head is in the full left "home" position.

Super slick top trap door & filament slot

Another door in the back of the enclosure allows for easy access to the Afinia's power and USB ports.

The Afinia's feet fit into sockets on the enclosure base plate, keeping it solidly in position during prints. Rubber feet on the bottom of the enclosure keep it anchored to your desk top or bench top.

A fan with charcoal filter ventilates the box, and a set of LED lights inside the enclosure keeps your print job brightly illuminated. I was a bit disappointed that there was no on/off switch for the fan and lights. To turn them on and off you must plug/unplug the included AC power adapter. I called Octave, and they said future versions would include an AC adapter with a switch, and would send me one when it is available.

The enclosure didn't include a spool mount. But, Octave makes 3D models of some mounts available on their website for download and printing. Another very minor nitpick is the arm that holds the "outboard" end of the filament tube doesn't fit the filament quite right- the filament doesn't "snap" into the slot at the end of the arm. The slot could stand to be a few thousands of an inch narrower, with a larger interior thru-hole for the filament. If this proves to be an issue I'll model a new arm and post it on

Approximate 30 degrees C interior temperature (blue tape holding thermocouple wire in place)

 Overall, I'd recommend this enclosure for purchase if you own an Afinia 3D printer. I can't yet say if it measurable improves print quality, but seems like it should.


  • Nicely designed & constructed unit. It seems to be good quality and should easily last the lifetime of your printer. 
  • keeps interior at a fairly constant temperature
  • LED interior lights a nice touch
  • No on/off switch (yet)
  • Filament arm design could use a little more polishing


  1. Thanks for posting Andy. It would be great to get some of our Cub Scouts in to see this and other STEM items.

  2. I'd be happy to give a tour of our facility to your Cub Scout group.