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3dsolex buying guide

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Hello everyone!

As the title says, I didn't find a guide, if there is one, please let me know, if not, I have a few questions that need clarifying and would be grateful for any insight!

I have an UM3Ex, and want to print business cards with small letters, which my 0.4 standard core can't do.

I would also like to be able to print wood and bronze filaments.

(don't know if it's allowed to link to other sites, so I won't be doing it)

My current understanding is:

-I need a 3dsolex hardcore to be able to change the heads, so I need the hardcore six pro

-the smaller the hole on the core, the smaller letters I can print, so I need the 0.1mm and 0.15mm nozzles, which are sold separately.

-if I don't want to buy cores often, I need the everlast core, printing is advised with a lower layer height than the hole diameter to avoid clogging. So to print with a 0.4 layer height, I need the 0.6 everlast core

This is what I understood from suggestions, reading comments, impressions.

Please correct me and/or advise me as I intend to make the purchase soon.

Thank you very much!

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I'm sure GR5 will jump in here soon. He can share everything you ever wanted to know about 3dSolex. I have two UM3Ext each with a 3dSolex Hardcore. I use the .6 nozzle primarily for the work I do, but they came with .25 .4 .6 .8 nozzles. I have used the .25 nozzle without a problem for small objects.

I purchased the 3dSolex printing cores because I missed the Olsson block nozzle options I found so useful with the UM2 Ext machines that I had before purchasing the UM3 machines.

Where are you GR5?

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Indeed the 3dsolex harcore+everlasting nozzle is the only option commercially available at this moment to print abrasive materials on the Ultimaker3. I have not tried the everlasting nozzle yet myself.

you can indeed print small letters with a smaller nozzle, besides the nozzle size, also the shoulder width plays a big roll in printing small. The 0.1 is pretty extreme, you may want to try the 0.25 first.

Regarding printing small, user @neotko is the expert .... he may have some tips...

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Printing small text. Business card small, that sure will be challenging.

The main issue, isn't the nozzle size, but also it is ofc. I can print up to 2.8mm tall letters simulating nozzle (wall line size) of 0.33 (I could go down to 0.28 now with the ZGE, but that's other history). But business cards, that a 8pt font size, and depends so much on the font, you will need to learn quite a big deal of stuff to deliver that (if you plan to print them fast ofc). Also you might need a fast nozzle for the base, and a main tinny nozzle for the fonts I suppose, for speed.

The main issues you will find, quite fast (I think, and I could be wrong...) and more or less the list of problems you can find along the way to do that.

- UM3 feeder isn't capable of delivery high amount of retractions on small areas (as anyone can see on this post https://ultimaker.com/en/community/40571-stringing-of-delicate-print )

IMO You will really need a decent extruder, a ZGE could be nice, but we don't plan to launch it for um3 since we.. well, we will not atm. So you will need at least a Bondtech feeder, but to install it you actually need to know Linux (basic) since UM3 uses a paternalistic system where stuff like Esteps and more things inside, can't be edited easily without using SSH to access your OWN printer and then edit the Esteps files (is really easy indeed, but could be much easier like on UM2 models).

So to resume:

- A better extruder, the nozzle ofc will help, but it can't do the amount of retractions needed to deliver clear fonts.

- Log into your machine. No biggie, but is what it is. And the info is removed when you do a firmware upgrade, unless you know more stuff.

- 3Dsolex nozzles I don't know how good/bad they are, but they seem to do the work just fine. IMO they don't put much on the plate when it comes to improving the actual print quality, but that's for other forum.

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So what I understood from this:

- Everlast is the way to go for exotic materials. I've read that to print with 0.4 width, I should use a 0.6 nozzle to avoid clogging. For 0.6 prints, use 0.8 and so on. Or did I get it wrong?

-Printing small is challenging with the UM3 because of the feeder. Print time is something I can sacrifice, market is nonexistent in my area and demand is low. I just want to be able to offer different options right now, and later on, buy a different machine with a better feeding system or just upgrade the system on the UM3. So if printing time is not important to me, can I lower the print speed and get readable text with a 0.1mm nozzle?

Thanks in advance!

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It depends how small you want to go with the fonts. Fonts are tricky. Make sure you pick a non-serif font. Like Arial or Helvetica. The serifs look bad when printed as some won't slice.

Neo can print 2.5mm tall letters with a .4mm nozzle which is almost impossible. With a .25mm nozzle you should be fine. You can lie to the printer about the nozzle size. In other words simply set line width to 0.15 with the .25mm nozzle. If you really need a smaller nozzle than 0.25mm for text - you should probably just not print text that small.

To avoid stringing and such as Neo says I would print quite cold - 180C or maybe even cooler - when printing the fonts and when printing with .25mm nozzle.

I also recommend printing the text first. On the bottom layer. That way if it messes up you can cancel the print and start over and not lose much time. You will have to tweak the 3 leveling screws a bit. Consider playing with flow rate also. I found flow rate of 140% worked well (in tune menu on um3 while printing) for small fonts.

.6mm nozzle is for lower quality but faster prints and .8mm even faster. These nozzles do great for thick layer heights.

Everlast is only for abrasive filaments: CF, glowfill, steelfill. Woodfill I believe is fine with brass (not certain). The symptom is that the tip of the nozzle gets sanded flat and the shoulder (the area around the print hole) gets wider and wider and the print quality gets worse and worse. It's easy to see when you know to look for shoulder width versus nozzle hole size.

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And 2.4mm this morning

I don't think I can go lower with a 0.4

This "Dog Tag" was printed on my old UM2 Ext with .25 nozzle (Olsson Block) at .15 layer. Even with a Sans Serif font things get a bit blurry looking. The letters were .5mm deep.

Acceptable for a pet identification tag, but not for a business card.:(

5a333a9689f95_DogTag(2).thumb.jpg.64e72a655695c74b6220bc9c7795fbf7.jpg

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Thank you for taking the time to answer.

These are some really great prints and advices. I didn't think you could lie about nozzle size:)

The thing is, I wouldn't want to tell a client that I can't print his business card with all the details because I'm limited by nozzle size. I live in a small town, so I can't afford sending clients away, but maybe I'm just trying to stretch it too far. I just want to be prepared for almost anything, hence why I'm looking for smaller, more detailed printing options and a wider range of filament.

For example, this is my fathers' business card. Is this something too small that can't be printed with just changing the nozzles to smaller ones?

WP_20170515_11_21_59_Pro.thumb.jpg.e53cb7a7a38f2b277554303b97e34c00.jpg

Regarding the ICE nozzles, what are those for? In comparison with everlast nozzles?

Edited by Guest

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ICE nozzles have a coating on them. When you receive one it's best to heat it to 200C for 2 hours to let the coating harden. But not mandatory. If you heat to 280C the nozzle still works but the coating is ruined.

ICE keeps filament from sticking to the nozzle. It's a minor thing but sometimes filament occasionally gets on the nozzle and then over an hour it can turn black and then sometimes it falls off into your print and leaves a black spot. Usually it's not a problem but with ICE nozzles it's never a problem.

ICE is not protection against abrasive filaments. Everlast is ruby or sapphire and needed for abrasive filaments like carbon fill (which is a filament I don't recommend). You can actually get both Everlast *and* ICE coating.

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IMHO you are never going to get the desired results with an FDM printer. Below is a sample of something similar, a printed plaque, done in an SLA process. The smallest letters are 2.8mm tall. The plaque itself is 90mm X 50mm X 4mm. Certainly better than FDM, but even with the superior SLA process the letter details are marginal.

SLA_Image.thumb.jpg.d30dce2ca133d4735e83ba0a6aaa274f.jpg

 

I'd suggest you are probably wasting your time with this effort . . .

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I'd suggest you are probably wasting your time with this effort . . .

Indeed, perfectly clean fonts at that size, now that's something ain't gonna happen. Maybe using a 0.1 nozzle, with a directdrive, and making one after 1-2h of print time. Even so, it won't be as clean as that SLA print.

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Thanks guys! I just wanted to know how low can I go. I will be doing what you gr5 and neotko suggested, so buying a hardcore six pack, and try to play with the 0.25 by fooling it. I wouldn't want to invest in direct drive upgrades, might be cheaper to just get a dd printer I assume.

Thank you for clearing up the ICE nozzle stuff. I don't think I will ever use carbon, but I definitely will want to use wooden and copper filaments. My main focus is the automotive industry, since we have a car repair shop, but I would like to broaden the things I can print to gifts and other personalized items and industries.

One thing is still unclear. I get that bigger nozzle=less time.

I read somewhere that the way you use everlast cores is: if I want to print something with 0.4,you use 0.6 core so that the filament doesn't stick. Is this true or this doesn't apply to everlast? Or am I not grasping something else here?

0.4 is the width of a line, which is defined by the core size and layer height can be anything I want because it is defined by how close the nozzle is to the last printed layer?

I'm sorry for the stupid questions, but I got my printer 3 months ago, and have been overwhelmed with learning to print, design and post-processing.

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I'm sorry for the stupid questions, but I got my printer 3 months ago, and have been overwhelmed with learning to print, design and post-processing.

There are no stupid questions. It is ok to be ignorant. We are all ignorant and noobs at one point. None of us sprang forth from the forehead of Zeus, fully sentient. That is what the forum is for. And believe me, it is helpful.

Ask away without fear. This is one of the most responsive communities I have ever been a part of.

Edited by Guest

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> read somewhere that the way you use everlast cores is: if

>I want to print something with 0.4,you use 0.6 core so that the filament doesn't stick.

That's a new one for me.  I haven't heard that and as far as I know if you want .4mm line widths you should use .4mm nozzle regardless whether it's made of steel, ruby, sapphire, or brass.

Having said that, Ultimaker found that when they measured many of their nozzles (or maybe they were 3rd party nozzles) and discovered that on average they were a bit smaller - maybe 3.9mm and they also concluded that it's better to print a little smaller than the nozzle width than larger.  So to be safe, and especially for new people, and also to reduce chances of underextrusion, Cura now defaults to .35mm line width for a .4mm nozzle.  Personally I use high quality nozzles that really are .4mm and so I just set the line width to the nozzle size.

But this has nothing to do with ruby versus brass.

Edited by Guest

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Thank you for the kind words kmanstudios! I've heard that Ultimaker has an awesome community from my vendor, when I bought it.

Thank you once again gr5 for taking the time to explain.

I think all that is left is to order them and play with them. In the meanwhile, I just discovered the hassles of ABS shrinkage. As I kid, I thought learning ends with school. Jokes on me:))

Thank you everyone for the help and support! I hope my noobish questions will help others if they are wondering the same!

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I thought, that the main reason for printing a bit smaller than the nozzle size is a nicer connection between adjacent lines and top surfaces with less marks.

Maybe? I don't know. I don't think so but maybe.

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i designed a spinning keychain and printing it in once piece. with pla i had no issues, with abs, i had to make the holes bigger because the abs fused together. reducing print speed did not solve it, only managed to solve it by making the hole bigger and reducing print speed for that portion of the print with tweakatz.

2017-05-19.thumb.png.250628ae0f0871708daffb98c68a31e6.png

the same design, with a smaller hole was okay for pla, but not for abs.

the height of the print was smaller too, by almost 10%, but later I figured out that it must have been the fact that I removed the print while still hot. I think that is what caused it to warp too, since it was fine when I took it off the bed, and later found it warped

Edited by Guest

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i designed a spinning keychain and printing it in once piece. with pla i had no issues, with abs, i had to make the holes bigger because the abs fused together. reducing print speed did not solve it, only managed to solve it by making the hole bigger and reducing print speed for that portion of the print with tweakatz.

2017-05-19.thumb.png.250628ae0f0871708daffb98c68a31e6.png

the same design, with a smaller hole was okay for pla, but not for abs.

the height of the print was smaller too, by almost 10%, but later I figured out that it must have been the fact that I removed the print while still hot. I think that is what caused it to warp too, since it was fine when I took it off the bed, and later found it warped

Looks as though we drifted well of of the original topic here. :). No matter . . .

Looks like this is a Volkswagon logo? If so, is the STL file available? I'd really like to print one for an associate. Does the center spin within the outer ring?

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sure thing.it's the least I can do.

https://www.youmagine.com/designs/vw-spinning-keychain

I have included the 123dx file also in case you want to edit it.

I used tweakatz in cura with 0.2 draft settings, everything default, removed adhesion helpers and I just reduced print speed to 50% at layer 4 or 5 for the next 5 layers. right when it starts to print that little thingie which is selected in the image

Edited by Guest

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sure thing.it's the least I can do.

https://www.youmagine.com/designs/vw-spinning-keychain

I have included the 123dx file also in case you want to edit it.

I used tweakatz in cura with 0.2 draft settings, everything default, removed adhesion helpers and I just reduced print speed to 50% at layer 4 or 5 for the next 5 layers. right when it starts to print that little thingie which is selected in the image

Popped off of the build plate ready to spin. :) Printed perfectly using Cura 2.4 default Fast Print setting except:

Infill - Lines at 35%

Adhesion - Skirt

Print Speed - 70

Print Acceleration - 2000

Travel Acceleration - 2000

Print Jerk - 10

Travel Jerk - 10

Took 34 minutes.

Thanks for sharing . . .

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