While I have been enjoying the Anet A8 and playing around with 3D printing, I wanted to post this in case anyone else runs into this possible fire issue with their Anet a8. (And from looking it up on the internet, this did not just happen to me.). It is something to watch out for in case you have the same issue. I am not sure if newer models have this corrected.
I was in the Garage when I was doing a print and noticed that the 3D printer was giving off a slight burning smell. The smell was kinda strong and I started looking around and found that the connector to the heat bed had melted some and had turned black on the side of the connector.
So I did a quick check and found numerous other articles on the internet about this. It sounds like the connector is not able to properly handle the amperage the heat bed uses. For now I decided to do a quick solder job on the power leads to the heatbed and see how it lasts, but with the bed moving back and forth I am not sure if it will stress it to much. I am still using the connector for the center pins. The solder job was not very easy as the heatbed does absorb a lot of the heat from the soldering iron. I then taped it up. Not sure if this is really any safer with the bed moving around. If you decide to do this, I take no responsibility for what happens. This may not be the correct solution and may not be any safer. This is just what I am trying for now. I do not leave it plugged in anymore, and I also am not doing any unsupervised printing as I consider that to be just too risky. This puts a damper on those long prints.
Now I know this was a cheap 3D printer, and issues can arise. While I have enjoyed using it to make prints, this does change how I will use it. I will not be using the printer unsupervised anymore (i.e. like while I am sleeping at night). I do not leave it plugged in except for when it is under supervised printing. I double checked to make sure the fire extinguisher close by in the garage and let the family know where it was. I also plan to get a welding blanket or something fireproof to have it sit on that and use it protect what’s around it. I do have a webcam in my garage, so I can still see it from my phone if I am not directly in the garage. If you have one of these printers I recommend you be careful as well. I am also going to look into some other solutions and I will let you know if I find any. If I end up doing a lot of 3D printing I may just purchase a better model that I feel more comfortable with the safety level.
Thanks and be safe!