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How to adjust the current to the stepper motors? avoid stepper motor overheating? new UMO+

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Hey fellow builders

I hoped my first post here would be a positive one with some awesome prints, but unfortunatly my new umo+ printer does not work..., I hope you guys can help me or give some tips.

(I have contacted support yesterday, but haven't heard from them yet)

I had a lot of fun building the unit, but I have not yet printed out a single correct Ultirobot print :(

Despite all the efforts of: lubricating, axis aligning, pulley checking, loosening the end-caps, reinstalling the newest firmware and cura, new gcode exports and making sure if the printhead can move without to much friction.

(advised by this site: http://support.3dverkstan.se/article/23-a-visual-ultimaker-troubleshooting-guide#shifted)  

The problem is the stepper motor, it was quite noticeable because it produces a clogging/low clicking sound when it shuts down for cooling down and messes up the print. 3dverkstan advice is to lower the current to the stepper motors. But I can not find this option in the ulticontroller menu so I presume I am overlooking the option... where can i find it?

Is there another way of avoiding the overheating part?

I really appreciate any help you can provide.

5a330e7d6ce85_2015-06-0822_58_54.thumb.jpg.5fb144db98149aa3e30dd08a62833265.jpg

(no weird printer settings, just a "High" quickprint profile with PLA. as requested by the manual for making your first print)

5a330e7d6ce85_2015-06-0822_58_54.thumb.jpg.5fb144db98149aa3e30dd08a62833265.jpg

Edited by Guest

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I have the exact same issue on my brand new UMO+ (with the white control board). All prints start nicely but after 2-3 hours the z-axis misbehaves (supposedly because of the heat of the stepper / main board) and messes up all my prints in the same way as yours. I don't know if you experienced the same thing but when the printer starts doing strings "in the air" it seems the bed is off 1-2 cm from the nozzle.

I'll try to add a fan on the bottom of my UMO+ to cool down to the z-axis stepper + board tonight and see if I can see any improvement. But I suspect overheating is the reason since the board is really close to the z-axis stepper which can be very hot since there is no active cooling.

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i just had this problem last week when printing with abs i had layer shifting like this. i contacted a us retailer for support and they notified me that the new boards were having some kind of power issue and i needed to reduce stepper current. it solved my problem i hope it solves yours too. the way i changed my current was to add the g code M907 X1100 Y1100 Z1100 E1250 in my slicer..

m907 is the code for current in milli amps to each of the motors the letter corresponds X motor Y motor Z motor and E for extruder motor.

the code i have here just changes current for x and y from 1500 to 1100. the motors do run alot cooler now but i think i still might do active cooling..cant hurt.. btw i was having layer shifts on my y axis for a few days and had to wait at least half a week for anyone to help me...

for some added info i use simplify 3d and have this code at the beginning of my startup script, you can do the same in cura under start/end code. since the slicers have "sticky parameters" once this code is read, the motors will be set to these values for the duration of that print. so just make sure if you change slicing profiles remember to add this code at start.

Btw Etix, the electronics for the UMO+ (which i also have) are the same as the UM2 which dont require any active cooling and those motors are rated to withstand allot of heat like 70C or more i think, i dont think it would be a heat issue for you

Edited by Guest

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Check your pullies first before being totally convinced it's an electronics thing.

If one of your Y pullies is loose it will show symptoms as you've posted them. (although usually a bit more of a slant) Where the layers will shift only in one axis. This is especially common building your own printer. make sure to REALLY tighten those set screws on each pully.

pully-576x1024.jpg

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Check your pullies first before being totally convinced it's an electronics thing.

If one of your Y pullies is loose it will show symptoms as you've posted them. (although usually a bit more of a slant) Where the layers will shift only in one axis. This is especially common building your own printer. make sure to REALLY tighten those set screws on each pully.

 

 

I had the same thing on X on my UM2 last week and it was the pully on the motor axis. so best check and tighten all pully's while you're at it.

 

I checked every pulley multiple times before posting. ;)

Unfortunatly this is not the problem, would be much easier to trace and fix..

Edited by Guest

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i just had this problem last week when printing with abs i had layer shifting like this. i contacted a us retailer for support and they notified me that the new boards were having some kind of power issue and i needed to reduce stepper current. it solved my problem i hope it solves yours too. the way i changed my current was to add the g code M907 X1100 Y1100 Z1100 E1250 in my slicer..

m907 is the code for current in milli amps to each of the motors the letter corresponds X motor Y motor Z motor and E for extruder motor.

the code i have here just changes current for x and y from 1500 to 1100. the motors do run alot cooler now but i think i still might do active cooling..cant hurt.. btw i was having layer shifts on my y axis for a few days and had to wait at least half a week for anyone to help me...

for some added info i use simplify 3d and have this code at the beginning of my startup script, you can do the same in cura under start/end code. since the slicers have "sticky parameters" once this code is read, the motors will be set to these values for the duration of that print. so just make sure if you change slicing profiles remember to add this code at start.

Btw Etix, the electronics for the UMO+ (which i also have) are the same as the UM2 which dont require any active cooling and those motors are rated to withstand allot of heat like 70C or more  i think, i dont think it would be a heat issue for you

 

5a330ea875cab_2015-06-1322_30_58.thumb.jpg.c7da2701ebc233fbb1fae1ab166f7a02.jpg

Finally my first correct print!

Thank you, this seems to solve the problem! =D

The motors are still heating up to very high temperatures and are producing a high pitched noise, but no hiccups  while printing

5a330ea875cab_2015-06-1322_30_58.thumb.jpg.c7da2701ebc233fbb1fae1ab166f7a02.jpg

Edited by Guest

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I have the exact same issue on my brand new UMO+ (with the white control board). All prints start nicely but after 2-3 hours the z-axis misbehaves (supposedly because of the heat of the stepper / main board) and messes up all my prints in the same way as yours. I don't know if you experienced the same thing but when the printer starts doing strings "in the air" it seems the bed is off 1-2 cm from the nozzle.

I'll try to add a fan on the bottom of my UMO+ to cool down to the z-axis stepper + board tonight and see if I can see any improvement. But I suspect overheating is the reason since the board is really close to the z-axis stepper which can be very hot since there is no active cooling.

 

I had that symptome in the first two prints but it solved itself, do you hear a clicking noise when the z-axis misbehaves/skipping steps? It is quite noticeable

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Indeed @mastereto solution worked perfectly! Adding a fan did not help but adding

M907 X1100 Y1100 Z1100 E1250

into the gcode fixed my issue.

 

I had that symptome in the first two prints but it solved itself, do you hear a clicking noise when the z-axis misbehaves/skipping steps? It is quite noticeable

Yes, there was a small clicking noise at regular interval coming from the z-axis stepper.

BTW I contacted the French reseller that told me this is a new but known issue with the new boards and they're investigating.

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I tend to agree with @gr5, most of the layer shifting cases come from the pulleys...

Now if you really want/need to tweak the motor current on X/Y:

- Check you firmware date: before November 2015 the default was 1300, and it has been brought back to 1200 in later firmware releases (firmware version can be seen on the UltiController.

- If you want to go lower than 1200 you can add the M109 GCode suggested in the above post to your 'Startup GCcode' in Cura

- Alternatively you can build a custom firmware here, with this firmware you will be able to adjust the current from the UltiController and save it to EEPROM if you want to (shameless plug)

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