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I was always curious about that too. Specially since on the web it says

"NOTE: The information provided here applies to Ultimaker PLA, but may apply to PLA filaments from other suppliers. The use of PLA from other suppliers is not covered by the Ultimaker warranty."

https://ultimaker.com/en/resources/22225-how-to-print-with-ultimaker-pla

Also on the UM3 Warranty says that it must be used

"The Product has only been used and/or combined with a compatible product and/or filament offered and described on www.ultimaker.com."

https://ultimaker.com/en/resources/23228-ultimaker-3-warranty

I'm starting to think that Yes, it breaks Warranty.

Zort...????

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Seeing that Filament from other suppliers would only really effect the print core and the print core is not covered by the warranty anyway, then I find it strange the this clause is in there.

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Seeing that Filament from other suppliers would only really effect the print core and the print core is not covered by the warranty anyway, then I find it strange the this clause is in there.

 

Indeed. Isn't like a colorfabb will break a slideblock...

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The Product has only been used and/or combined with a compatible product and/or filament offered and described on www.ultimaker.com.

I think it's a bloody disgrace that this is in there!

I think it goes against the open Ultimaker value and it's just plain stupid.

So my advice just ignore it, it's bla bla from the legal and marketing people and as others said your CORE is a consumable without warranty anyhow.

I feel this nonsense only hurts the companies image, and won't bring anything.

The best way to sell more filament is to sell stuff that's better than others, and is worth the money......

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So I just got a PM from someone who did not like my rant...

Basically stating Ultimaker is a big company now and they just have to cover there ass, no harm done.

I obviously disagree with the 'no harm done' as I feel the open character is a big part of Ultimakers success.

But maybe I can elaborate a bit more.

In short, I think the wording of the warranty is not representing the values I hope Ultimaker has. I think they could achieve the same goal (limiting warranty caused by the use of unsuited material) in a more positive way.

maybe something like;

 

The Ultimaker you bought is an open machine, in which you can use many 3th party filaments. Ultimaker deliberately chooses to keep its ecosystem open. However should you damage your machine as a result of using some exotic 3th party or home made filament this can be cause for exclusion of warranty.

But hey, what do i know... I'm no legal person...

Edited by Guest
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I don't see your post as a rant, but an honest opinion and I think you are absolutely right. That kind of web disclaimer is the same Zortrax uses on their site.

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If this is the case they should show a warning message on the printer when you load filament with no RFID tag. When you manually select material it should say warning you may void warranty or not even allow you to select anything other then their own.

I agree it goes against the open nature of UM and if they want to stick with clauses like this then they need to make some approved manufacturers like colorfabb that don't void warranty.

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If this is the case they should show a warning message on the printer when you load filament with no RFID tag.

 

that would be difficult.....they also use the line on the um2 :)
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For us "open source" and an "open filament" system (=standard spools + multiple manufacturers) were absolute requirements. This among other breakpoints like: sufficient size for our models (of course), good printing quality, within budget, good service (both concerning spareparts, and help, thus including the forum),...

3D-printing is a very volatile market at this time, with unmatured products in full development, where the users have to understand the technology and actively work on the technical inside aspects. It is like cars around 1900: you couldn't drive a car if you didn't understand the technology, and you had to be able to repair it yourself.

We do not want to be stuck with devices for which there are no more spare parts, or no suitable filaments, or no technical documentation. So we need multiple suppliers, and we need sufficient technical info for maintenance and upgrade work.

And we also need enough freedom (both legally and practically) to improve the device and to experiment with different filaments, so that we can select the best quality filament for our needs. It is clear that a lot of new filaments will be developed. We also need enough different colors, which may not be available from only one manufacturer.

We, users, are all technicians, or artists with good technical understanding, and we are all aware of the need for backup parts and sources.

This is why a Zortrax and a few other printers of similar size and quality were out of question for us: they were closed-source, and/or "closed-filament".

Of course there may be a few UM-clones due to the openness. But they don't hurt sales, since those buyers probably wouldn't have bought an UM anyway. If they wanted the real thing, they would have bought a real UM. And if there was no UM-clone, they would have bought another cheap clone from an unreliable source...

So I think that ultiarjan is absolutely right that these values and openness should be preserved at all cost. They are the basis of the Ultimaker quality and sales success. Without these values, we would not have bought our two UM2.

And yes, openness includes freedom of speech. If you can not analyse and discuss problems, you can not solve them. A forum that only allows praising the leader, like in some Middle-East countries, would soon be no forum at all anymore.

Of course I also do understand Ultimaker's point that they do not want to be liable for destructive idiocies done by unqualified users. Such as "repairing" fragile things with a hammer, and then complaining that they are bent and don't fit anymore... So there has to be a good balance, but it should definitely be towards the openness.

(Besides: I have no idea who runs the Ultimaker company, so this is not personal. But in general I think that companies should be run by enthousiasts and developers; thus by the very people who create and use their own products. Not by legalese people who have no feeling with the product or the market. Of course, commercial and legalese people are very valuable, but only as advisors in lower positions, not at the top. They should be servants, not the desicion makers. This applies to all companies, including car companies, computer companies, whatever... Bookkeepers and lawyers may be required to prevent a company from collapsing, but whenever they take over, the products go down and then the company goes down too.)

My viewpoint, so feel free to see things differently. :)

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One more comment: I do understand the Ultimaker fear that some people may abuse the printer or materials in an attempt to sue and to get a huge damage payments. Like those idiots who wash their pets (pet animals, not PET plastic) in a dish-washer, and then dry them in the microwave. And next, of course, they sue the manufacturers and demand 100 billion dollar. Criminal lawyers working on a 25% margin of these wins, and idiot judges, are often all too happy to join in. This tendency is now coming to Europe too.

So I do understand that any company should legally avoid that huge risk.

But the wordings in any warnings and warranty should be more in the style of: "This device should not be used by people with reduced mental or physical abilities, or by people who do not understand the technology and the inherent risks." Ultimaker already uses some of these wordings. :)

The disclaimers and warranty should leave any qualified user, technician or artist the freedom to use any filament (only excluding blocked nozzles due to wrong filament from warranty), and the freedom to experiment with the printer and to improve it. As long as good common sense, good care, and good technical practices are used. It should state that open development and testing are encouraged, not discouraged.

It may take a bit of thinking and creativity to find a well balanced wording that is legally valid, but I believe this is the direction to go.

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This tendency is now coming to Europe too.

 

Oh dear, as much I like and respect my American friends they owe a huge debt to the rest of the world for exporting their litigation culture. We have had to endure litigation of our troops returning from the middle east, which fortunately the Government has just acted on, and a real serious issue (politically) right now is litigation against the NHS.

Both of course dwarf the UM warranty point , but it is still a bad move and poorly thought out and wrongly worded.

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It is a difficult and grey area. On one hand we are open and we feel that as a user you should be free to experiment and adapt your workspace to what your project requires. We hope with Ultimaker we can play a versatile role in there.

On the other hand, we can only really guarantee our equipment will work, with (in this case) Ultimaker filaments. That is what we have tested, and know will work.

It is not uncommon for a (new) user to blame the hardware when bad third party filament is (mis)used.

Outside of those/our filaments, there is a whole spectrum of materials ranging from home-made plastic to quality filament like Colorfabb.

Specifying/categorizing that list would be an endless job that would require endless updating, and would probably only result in more discussion. I have not been part of the discussion on these specific claims, but generally, I understand legal 'claims' must be clear.

In a response to @Geert_2's comment that a claim should rather sound like: 'or by people who do not understand the technology and the inherent risks'. How would you quantify understanding or not understanding the technology? Again I foresee endless discussions.

When it is no longer an abstract claim, and there is a real user with a real problem which may or may not be caused by 3rd party filament, I like to think that we (or our partners) always talk with our users and will look openly at what happened and come to a reasonable solution. We have always looked after our users and will always do.

Even at the marketing department, make sure you hold on to your seat @UltiArjan, we care about the open source values ;) We do! We are also a part of Ultimaker, and if we, and the whole company for that matter, would not agree on fundamental cornerstones of our identity, we would not be working at Ultimaker.

I also want to stress I fully agree with 'And yes, openness includes freedom of speech.' and have no issues with UltiArjan's post. ... I have seen worse ;) The forum has always been an open discussion platform. Like @Geert_2 said, if we can't talk about problems, we can't solve them. Every healthy discussion should lead to either validation of what we are doing or improvement.

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Hi folks,

I have a few thoughts to share on this topic, for whatever they are worth.

1) As a practical matter, I do not think Ultimaker would use that clause to void your warrantee in normal cases. So far, to me at least, they have been good people. So, I do not think there is any (current) practical risk of them being jerks about support.

2) But it is a crazy dumb clause to include.

3) So why not, instead of just complaining, talk to Ultimaker and see of they will change the wording. Assume they are nice people until they show they are not. :) At least see what they say. It helps make Ultimaker a better company and it helps make the 3D printing world a better place. :)

4) If more pressure is needed then raising community awareness of the issue would be a good strategy, I think. If people start blogging about this and complaining on the forums, they would have to pay more attention to it. But, again, this is not a first step, the first step is to just talk and reason with them.

5) And lastly, if one is really concerned about the words on paper and want a printer right now, then I hear that the makers of LulzBot, Aleph Objects, has been called the most Open Source and Open Hardware company in 3D Printing. I hear they are quite religious about staying true to that ethos. I have no personal experience with them, so who knows. And one would have to check their specific warrantee wording. ... And it is different hardware, different ecosystem, different community, etc. But they are in the same price range as Ultimaker, make excellent machines by all accounts, and they might be more compatible with for your (and my) philosophy right out of the box.

6) And finally, I will say that for me Ultimaker has been sufficiently Open, and there is enough of a community, that I personally am not worried about not being able to source parts and get support, even if the company ever goes away or goes insane. The fact that some people have successfully built their own from scratch UMOs and UM2s gives me confidence too. I cannot speak to UM3s though.

Anyway, I hope that some or all of these perspectives help. Or are at least thought provoking. Thanks for reading. :)

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@krys, I was gonna say.. last time I checked I was Ultimaker people ;)But thank you for not calling me a jerk. (yet)

So, following your response and my reply, coming from Ultimaker, what do you think?

(or anyone else for that matter). I hear the feedback, and from a user perspective I agree it doesn't sound very nice, but from a manufacturer perspective, it is not that easy (i.e. many things are easier said than done). But I am curious and excited to see if we can find common ground.

Edited by Guest

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I guess I void warranty on everything I buy with the first few weeks but that's the nature of a maker isn't it?

So I don't normally worry about them and how long they are etc. it's just one of those grey areas for both parties.

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I am pretty sure you can get a T-shirt that says "I void warrantees". ... Now I want one. :D

As for what do I think, I can definitely see both sides. But I wonder if the wording could be improved like Ultiarjan suggests, without impacting on the legal risk profile.

Would Ultimaker be willing to discuss this with their lawyer(s) and see if friendlier/more community-compatible words are possible? Words that still meet legal requirements, of course.

I get that lawyers are not cheap, which is why I am asking if you/they are willing.

And yes, I can personally say that @SandervG is not a jerk. :D (yet) :p Actually, SandervG is a big part of why I have the impression that Ultimaker, the company, is good people in the first place! So, thank you SandervG! :)

Also, I want to say, I am not interested in championing this cause. I personally do not have an issue with the status quo. My attitude is closer to Labern's. But if someone wants to pursue this, then I have stated my thoughts/suggestions.

Alternatively, if Ultimaker wants to try and be proactive on this and then market it as another example of them actively listening to their community, then that would be awesome too. :) There is opportunity here, I suggest.

P.S. Thank you for the 2+ upgrade kit. I, for one, see that you listen and care. :)

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I think there are two sides of this

For a new user it would be clear that if the Warranty says use A or B happens, that's all it is.

Ofc we know, from experience, than isn't like that. I don't think a reseller would not replace a bad component after checking the Logs and seeing that the user didn't used a UM filament.

But also, if I would have see that 2 years ago when I bought my first UMO+, then I would have probably not buy it just because the first thing I wanted to do at that time was using wood filaments. Also I wanted to start a business, and as a business Warranty is a very important concept.

But again... It shouldn't be a problem.

And also, if the CTO of the company says is an open system where you can use any filament, does that Warranty msg make any sense? (Minute 07:55 sec)

 

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Specifying/categorizing that list would be an endless job that would require endless updating, and would probably only result in more discussion.

 

This is but one solution to the problem. But yes, this solution is impossible.

 

Understand legal 'claims' must be clear.

 

They don't have to be, but it makes it a whole lot easier. Right now it's a single line that covers this entire subject. I don't feel that single line is sufficient for this very complex matter.

 

When it is no longer an abstract claim, and there is a real user with a real problem which may or may not be caused by 3rd party filament.

 

There is a big difference between ensuring quality and ensuring warranty. These two seem to have been mixed up in the discussion (and legal text). Ultimaker guarantees a certain quality, provided that you use materials / equipment "controlled" by Ultimaker. This has no bearing on warranty what so ever.

All that being said; I'm confident that there is a way to describe this that covers the legal aspect, without completely shutting other material out. For instance; "The Product has only been used and/or combined with a compatible product and/or filament type offered and described on www.ultimaker.com."

One word makes all the difference here. With the new wording slapping random PLA in it won't void warranty, but using strange experimental carbon + bronze fill will (in which case it makes sense, as it puts a lot of strain & wear on the machine)

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When I think of warranty issues, I think of problems with the assembly of the printer or the electronics failing. We've seen some of those problems with the early batches of Ultimaker 3's. But would Ultimaker decline their warranty if they had been printing with ColorFabb instead of Ultimaker brand filament?

I just want to make sure I understand that there's a clear difference between problems a filament can cause versus issues elsewhere in the printer system (assembly, electronics, motor failures, etc.)

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I believe consumables(think filament, nozzles, or in UM3s case Cores) are never covered under warranty.

Therefore the logical conclusion would be that it covers electronics, frame, bed, feeder etc. It would indeed be crazy if a customer would get the impression a broken frame is not fixable under warranty due to using ColorFabb plastic.

That being said, I know UM is nice and kind and will always try to help you. But it is the strange impression that matters to me, and others.

Furthermore it opens a door to NOT be kind, and that is something neither we, nor UM wants I think.

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I just realised that my text above could be interpreted in different ways.

So I would like to make clear that up till now we are very happy with our two Ultimaker printers, with the service, and with the openness on the forum and in the documentation (e.g. the technical drawings). According to my collegues, they don't find such openness in some companies with huge +100.000 euro 3D-printers.

It's just that I want to make sure that your management is fully aware of the importance of this currently good and open atmosphere, and that they need to make sure it stays so in the future, for all the reasons stated above. While at the same time protecting everyone (both the company, dealers and honest customers) from malicious threaths. That can be a difficult balance.

I do indeed see the risk of problems with home-made filament or cheap garbage, used by accident, or used maliciously to sue a competitor out of business.

So, concerning wording, something like the next phrase might be better for the warranty?

"... Ultimaker filaments or filaments from reputed manufacturers who have thoroughly tested their filaments on Ultimaker printers. For example but not limited to: ..."

This will encourage non-listed manufacturers to thoroughly test their products too, and to publish the data and recommended settings and practices for use of their filaments on UM-printers.

The more versatile the UM-printers are, the more documentations there is, and the more filament there is available for it, the more reasons people have to buy an Ultimaker. Which is good for everyone.

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