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Make the Ultimaker 2 more quiet?

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Hello,

I recently got a second hand U2, and I have been printing nicely for a while now. It is not very quiet, but I remember seeing a U2 printing very quietly in an event, so it makes me wonder if this is caused by the age of the motor? (The last owner use it pretty heavily) Or does different U2 have different noise level? Maybe it's the settings I have?

Please share if you have some tips for a quiet night printing. :)

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That depends on what's causing the noise, it could be anything from the fans to tired old bearings. Do you have any details on what seems to be the most noisy?

Also remember that the noise at an event (usually big spaces and lots of other noise) and the noise at home is two completely different beasts.

Edited by Guest

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You could always build a soundproof enclosure round the entire thing, but its a machine thats moves constantly and changes direction rapidly, so its always going to make noise. silent operation would be near impossible unless the machine was much heavier, but even then in a very quiet house you will still hear it. I sleep one floor above my um2 which sits on a high density sound proofing foam to eliminate floor vibration and still faintly hear it even at 30mm/s. If i had ANY other noise like ac or a tv on somewhere i wouldnt. sound travels unfortunately.

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For decrease the noise from z-axis, I think you can slow down z-axis movement speed a little bit. I think you can change that by lookup the menu on the LCD screen.

 

The noise seems to be mostly from the motors, especially when it's doing a fast movement or when the z-level is changing. I tried adding some oil to the axis, doesn't seem to help.

 

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I've been on a similar quest to quieten my UM2E:

 

  • Swapping all the fans for Sunon Maglevs helped my ears stop ringing.
  • Padded feed helped a bit, but I suspect print quality is suffering as a result.
  • Putting a door on the front and a lid on the top was a complete waste of time.

 

Enclosing the whole thing in a box made of 16mm 5 layer polycarbonate sheeting made a massive difference - it's used for greenhouses and blocking road noise. I can sit next to it while printing and hold a phone conversation, but I can still feel that stepper hum in my bones.

 

The polycarbonate case does an awesome job of trapping heat for ABS printing - perhaps too good. I have a pair of 60mm fans, a thermistor, a handful of LEDs, an Arduino and a half baked plan to create some sort of self-regulating cooling system + pimp lights for the enclosure.

I've also ordered a set of stepper motor dampers which I hope will fit and finish the job: https://www.matterhackers.com/store/printer-accessories/3d-printer-motor-vibration-dampers-4-pack

If that doesn't do the trick I'm at a crossroads - do I replace the PCB and stepper drivers or do I look into yet more sound isolation? If someone has some experience with this I'd really appreciate the advice. I've been going through the forum looking for info, but I don't know much about the subject to begin with so going is slow.

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Note that you will have to realign the pulleys to accommodate the shift in position with the dampers.

 

Thanks for the tip. I installed the extrusion upgrade kit this morning, and it included a set of spacers to help align the X/Y axis after replacing the rods - I expect they'll make moving those pulleys a lot easier.

FWIW the new fan shroud from the upgrade kit is fairly quiet at 100%, but I suspect that's the fans more than the shroud. The new geared feeder works like a champ and *seems* quieter.

Any ideas what to do about the beep-beep sound?

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The stepper drivers were a bit of a bust.

Installing the dampers was precarious because of how they interact with the motor spacers. Because of the spacers and the stand-off from the frame only using 2 screws places a lot torque on the screws and pulls the motor out of alignment. The result is the belt runs skew in the gear. Different motor mounts with more padding, mounting the motors outside the chassis so I can use the dampers or converting to direct drive are the only things I can come up with at the moment.

They also didn't seem to make much difference to the noise levels - it seems like the motor spacers already do some or that on their own and the noise I'm hearing is conducted through the belts and rods? I hope it's the first because I may be able to do something about that.

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