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Loading materials issue

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Hello Ultimaker community,


I just got my new Ultimaker 3 this week. I am new to the 3d printing world and it's very exciting. 

Had a few issues to resolve before I got my 1st prints and I haven't tried PVA yet. My questions to you all is - Is it normal that when you load materials, the filament stops halfway through the transparent tubes? I have to wait for the motor to slowly pass it through to the printcores to see filament come out. Sometimes it doesn't and I have to reload it all over again. I find this process cumbersome and buggy. Any ideas on how to improve it? It seems to stop halfway 90% of the time. 


Thx in advance guys. Looking forward to exchanging ideas and advice on this forum.






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That's never happened to me.  Although I haven't used this feature in a year I can safely say it's a very reliable feature on a working printer.


For one thing you can just squeeze that lever on the feeder and slide the filament in by hand the second half (that's how I do the entire filament load anyway).  Actually I use this tool:



Okay so what is wrong with your printer.  Well I can think of 3 things:

1) Your bowden is too long.  Seems unlikely.

2) steps/mm is set wrong for the extruder.  This seems unlikely because didn't you imply that sometimes it works perfectly?

3) The extruder is losing steps at top speed.  Pay particular attention and listen carefully as it feeds.  Does it slowly ramp up speed (the extruder) and then at some point stop extruding but make a strange noise and then the noise lowers in pitch and it starts extruding again as it's slowing down?  if so then your max extruder speed might be set too high or there may be some very high friction in the bowden - maybe some thin string of pla is jamming things up?  I'm not sure.  But the wedgebot above can help you feel if there is something clogged in your bowden.


If this was a UM2 I'd assume you had the um2go firmware on there but that's impossible I think for the UM3.



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I've seen this happen if the feeder doesn't have a strong grip on the filament when it tries to start the "fast forward" part in the second stage of the loading process. I always like to make sure the filament is visible at the bottom of the bowden tube just above the feeder before you start the fast forward part of the process.

I've got a video here using the wedgebot @gr5 indicated to by-pass the built in loading process: 


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