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DymFT is a pixel-based Printer for Dymo-embossing Tape, built from stuff we had laying around.
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processing test sketches


Firmware for the super funky dymFT, a needleprinter for dymo labels (the 9mm embossing variant). It's made from printer and CD-drive junk, an old PS2 keyboard and a 16x2 character display.

CLICK TO WATCH THE VID! Click the picture to watch the video on vimeo.


As fonts we are using bitmap fonts. The code is inspired by the AdafruitGFX library. Most fonts in use, the so called UNSCII fonts are taken from this source and were transcoded to compatible bitmap fonts using the Adafruit font converter. Due to the low resolution of the printers y-Axis (maximum 10 pixel per column) only few fonts remain still readable when convertet. Nevertheless all the UNSCII fonts are looking nice because they were made for low resolution display.

rough BOM

qty part
1 Teensy 3.2
2 DRV8825 stepper driver
1 CD-Rom Drive with stepper
1  stepper from old printer with gear reduction
1 servo motor (not the tiny ones)
some rubber rollers from old printer
1 beefy power supply
1 pair of scissors
1 PS2 Keyboard (the ones without USB-Support work easiest, so get one with a grey and not a purple ps2-plug)
1  16x2 LCD display
1 nice 12V solenoid
4 decorative feet
1 tiny speaker and a simple amp for funky sounds
1 beefy mosfet for driving the Solenoid (we used an IRF530 (might be overkill))

and some screws, metal junk, springs and resistors n‘ stuff.

special keys

Key Function
F1 5x7 Font
F2 UNSCII regular
F3 UNSCII alterntive
F4 UNSCII thin
F5 Times New Roman
F7 UNSCII fantasy
F8 enabel key sound
F9 cut
PRNT SCRN start printing
PG_UP move Label
PG_DOWN move Label
arrow keys move cursor

Teensy Pins

Pin Function
0 /
1 /
23 Label detect
3 Stamping Solenoid
4 Label Enable
5 Label Step
6 Label Dir
7 Head Enable
8 Head Step
9 Head Dir
10 Cut servo pwm
11 Keyboard CLK
12 Keyboard DATA
13 Status LED
A14 Sound
14 Head stop
15 cut servo enable
16 Display REG SEL
17 Display Enable
18 Display D1
19 Display D2
20 Display D3
21 Display D4
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