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kmanstudios

Da Clumsy Noob gets to drying out filament

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Ok, before I start, let me say that there are a gazillion great things out there to print that can do what I describe below. I purchased these products because:

(A) Time considerations

And

(B) Would rather take the filament and use expensive stuff for other things.

One item I purchased as the "Print Dry" setup. The second thing is that I got the Polybox from Polymaker.

I just came off a huge job and just got around to setting things up today. I did get the Printdry setup a week ago and did put my PVA in there to 'slow cook' and just let it sit while the printer finished a 6 day print and I finished the job.

The Polybox is super easy to put together. It is mostly all done, just putting the battery in the thermo-hygrometer, Dropping the desiccant into its compartment and slapping some bearings on the rollers for the spools.

And it has made a huge difference. First off, no more crackling and popping on the PVA. The PVA is solid and not 'webby' like it used to be. So, the PrintDry took some really humidity absorbed PVA and rejuvenated it. That is very pleasing. Even with the low humidity we had over the last week, it still is an improvement.

The Polybox feeds very well and solves one of the issues I had with oversized spools and that has made a difference. It comes with a bowden tube to feed from the box to the feeder and due to it being a straight feed from the spool out to the feeder on the UM3E, I do not get binding like I used to. I never really got that with low weight spools, but some that I buy are not configured to get on the UM3E's feeder arm properly and the filament guide.

All in all, I have noticed a marked improvement on the PVA and think it may be helping the PLA not have humidity as well.

So, if you have troubles with your PVA at least (or really any other hygroscopic filaments) I suggest you make a dry box or purchase one. The Print Dry has excellent temp controls and does not require killing hours from printer use just to heat the buildplate and dry out the filament.

Not a review, but a referral to the need to dry out the filament and at least make your own. It really does make a difference.

While I hang my head in maker shame for not making my own, now I do not have to kill a bit of time and filament and can go on with my own designs and ideas.

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Both of these products look very valuable in keeping the filament dry. I have just bought an Ultimaker 3 and so am looking at all the different features, both of the printer and all associated products. I have a couple of questions :-

1. I am assuming that the filament feeding from either of these boxes still has to be fed by the filament feeder on the back of the machine? Otherwise how would it feed to the print cores?

2. If the filament is fed directly from the protection boxes and not on the reel holder on the printer, then I assume that it bypasses the filament recognition device on Ultimaker 3 filament reels. In which case this function becomes obsolete and it is the LED display that has to be set to whatever filament is used?

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Both of these products look very valuable in keeping the filament dry.  I have just bought an Ultimaker 3 and so am looking at all the different features, both of the printer and all associated products.  I have a couple of questions :-

1. I am assuming that the filament feeding from either of these boxes still has to be fed by the filament feeder on the back of the machine?  Otherwise how would it feed to the print cores?

That is correct. But, since it does not make that sharp turn it does not require the filament guide in the first spool position. It also serves to help loosen or straighten the filament by not remaining so wound up at all points. If you look at the pics, you will find that it has plugable filament holes on top and bottom of the clear case, 3 positions of each.

2. If the filament is fed directly from the protection boxes and not on the reel holder on the printer, then I assume that it bypasses the filament recognition device on Ultimaker 3 filament reels. In which case this function becomes obsolete and it is the LED display that has to be set to whatever filament is used?

If you are using Ultimaker spools, then there is a work around. Put an empty spool on the spool holder to tell Ultimaker what it is using.

However, since a lot of filaments are 3rd party (Colorfabb, Polymaker, etc) this can still be used as a work around. Especially if you print a lot of the same filament choices.

Or, in that case, you would be selecting the filament manually.

But, having the empty spool holders, you can hang empty filament spools anyway no matter what brand you are using.

When I was looking at the Polybox, I had to evaluate my own designs or mods to existing designs. For instance, I wanted to use a bowden tube to bridge from the dry box to the filament guide. Just purchasing the bowden tube alone is almost 30% the cost of the Polybox, and even more as you can load 2 standard size (around 0.75 kg) and they give you enough for feeding two spools, so that ups the amount saved to 60% of the basic cost of the product. Then I added on the time to print, the cost of the plastics, factored in a failure or two and even the thermo-hygrometer and battery and it came out a lot cheaper. For me at least. And, I can keep printing the things I want to focus on.

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Same here! Had a lot of trouble with pva / nylon / and other exotics. Bought a food dryer, and cooked all of my filaments. Was able to save some of them.

Then i took some storage boxes, where i put the "open" reels in, with 500 grams silica gel, and was able to keep the humidity under 20%. So storage is secure.

Then, still the problem of taking the reels out and putting them on the printer. Holala, the Polybox came to rescue. Cheap and convenient, i will just make 1 modification, 2 exit holes for the filament in the base section for easy switching of materials.

I think many people don't realise the importance of keepingthe filamenst dry, and experience problems without knowing the real cause...

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.......i will just make 1 modification, 2 exit holes for the filament in the base section for easy switching of materials.

There are three holes already.... at the top and bottom of the clear casing. I am not sure I understand what you mean about making 2 exit holes.

Edited by Guest

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It does not. That is one of the exposed areas that will let some moisture creep in. What I do is pull some filament out to get it in the feeder then it will pull up as tight as it can go. The only time it is not tight(ish) is when there is retraction and the material gets sent backward a small bit.

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