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3DSystems CubeX Looks Cool

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Posted · 3DSystems CubeX Looks Cool

Yes, I did have a learning curve to clmb to get my UM to work to my expectations, and I did early on upgrade my hot end and drive to better than stock equipment. For me this was empowering work to do. In hindsight, a heated bed was less of an advantage than I thought going in. It's installed and works well when I choose to use it. When I eventually get to printing ABS, it should be a huge advantage. Without the advice and collective knowledge snd advice of other users, I could have done none of these things.

What I'm trying to say is, the UM open design is a huge advantage to the forward development of the machines - both hardware and software. There are currently several choices for upgrading hot ends, more choices for filament drives, and other new mechanical upgrades almost daily on Thingiverse. The fact that the choices exist is proof that we are witnessing the evolution (And better, taking active roles when we choose.) The strong solutions will survive and the collective user group can ride on each others successes. The flexibility of the firmware faciltates this evolution when it is a factor in hardware changes. I can now capably alter my own version of the firmware. Ask 3DSystems to alter their firmware to enable a new function and see what happens

Specifically, I am personally very excited about the E3D all stainless hot end that is being applied to the UM (by Lars and others) and furthermore a dual or triple hot end built on that platform. If this is found not to be the ideal solution then we will learn from it and the ideal is just around the corner. Whats more, the E3D solution is very affordable even in a multiple of 3.

When it comes to software, I have never seen a process application develop as quickly and responsively as Cura has. Not much more needs to be said.

A strictly proprietary machine cannot adapt at nearly the pace. There will be one source for support and you better call between 9 and 5.

The open architecture and its distributive forces are fostering the improvement of our machines at a greater pace. Ultimaking probably doesn't have the resources that 3DSytems has for R&D, but the user community can make up for it at least in part. The enthusiasm of the group will in part also compensate for the desparity.

I am sorry Bill, that you have had so much difficulty in getting your UM working to your satisfaction. I realize that alot of people aren't going to have the patience or accumen to suffer though it when things don't go to plan. I get the fustration with the staleness of the content in the build wiki. I think local users that could interact in person and first hand with the machines could help alot in this regard. The user base here in the states seems to be pretty sparse. What could be done to help get new users in contact with experienced ones - especially in the earliest stages? The users need a way to locate one another. At one point there was Google map that showed the UM locations. Unfortunately, any malcontent could edit it and render it useless. Could this be replicated in a more secure format?

Best Regards,



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    • 1 month later...
    Posted · 3DSystems CubeX Looks Cool

    Just thought I'd pop on to give an update after 5 months of using the CubeX Trio. If I had to summarize in one sentence, I'd say, "the honeymoon is over." The printer is mechanically excellent, but the cartridge system completely ruins the ownership experience. It's not even the cost which is an issue (although that is one contributing factor for most people.) It's the reliability of the cartridges. I've tried a total of 8 different cartridges on my printer and every single cartridge has jammed at some point, usually ruining a long print in the process. In every case, I've had to cut the cartridge open, pull the filament out, and feed it from outside the printer. I figured they would fix this quickly. I was wrong. It's been 5 months and the only thing they did was make it even more difficult to use third-party filament. Now they check constantly during the print to make sure a valid cartridge is still inserted, then they write the remaining filament quantity back to the cartridge chip and stop printing when it hits zero. Even worse, after 5 months, the cartridges still suck. They've also been difficult to get due to ongoing supply problems. People have figured out how to use KISSlicer with the CubeX to get much better prints, but with the cartridges jamming constantly, it doesn't really matter. The printer is an ongoing pain in the azz. I'm considering keeping it for the mechanism and then gutting the electronics to turn it into an open source printer, otherwise you may see it on eBay in another month or two.

    The bottom line: Until they abandon the cartridge system, I don't recommend buying this printer. Period.

    I hope this advice helps somebody else avoid the frustration of owning one.

    On a happier note, after I bought another bunch of replacement parts and swapped out a lot of stuff on my Ultimaker, it has been chugging away for a couple months now without any problems. I'm guessing this is the experience many others have had right out of the box. Better late than never, right?


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