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aaron

General questions about print quality. New User.

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I am new to this hobby and need a bit of help. I got the Ultimaker because it was rated the most accurate out of a pool of many. My prints right now are okay but they are not as gorgeous as the ones everyone displays that they printed with their Ultimaker. So here are my questions:

 

  1. Do you recommend using Cura? Is there a better program?
  2. Is there a guide somewhere giving detailed fixes to certain problems with a print (ex. higher temp affects aspect 1 and feed rate affects aspect 2)
  3. Does anyone have any helpful tips that they think could help?
  4. How do you get rid of the string trail the hot end drags with it everywhere when it prints.

This is also a little unrelated but I am having an issue with brown liquid plastic oozing out of the threads of my heated block and nozzle. How can I fix this?

Any response is greatly appreciated. Thanks.

 

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So many questions...

 

I am having an issue with brown liquid plastic oozing out of the threads of my heated block and nozzle.

 

I haven't had this problem. Some people say if you ignore it eventually the volatiles evaporate and you are left with a nice permanent plug. Sounds like maybe your nozzle wasn't screwed in all the way? If you try to tighten it now though you might break it. Definitely heat it to 240C before trying to screw or unscrew the nozzle and be gentle as brass isn't very strong. If it's really a problem I recommend posting a photo in a separate (new) thread.

 

guide somewhere giving detailed fixes to certain problems

 

google. Or ask in this forum.

 

How do you get rid of the string trail the hot end drags with it everywhere when it prints.

 

Not sure what you mean. I'm guessing maybe you mean the first few minutes? Always print with a skirt by default. If the string doesn't come off as soon as it starts printing the skirt, your bed isn't close enough to the head.

Leveling is one of those things that takes more patience than most people (like me) give it. The first layer is critical to get squished a bit into the blue tape or it won't stick well.

If you are talking about something else then post a picture or a video maybe?

 

Does anyone have any helpful tips that they think could h

 

Just read everything posted here for the next 3 months and you will learn them all. Here's one: always clean fresh blue tape with rubbing alcohol (aka isopropyl alcohol found anywhere bandages are sold). This removes the non-sticky stuff (wax?) they put on there so that the tape unwraps. It makes parts stick to the blue tape so so so well!

 

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I am new to this hobby and need a bit of help. I got the Ultimaker because it was rated the most accurate out of a pool of many. My prints right now are okay but they are not as gorgeous as the ones everyone displays that they printed with their Ultimaker. So here are my questions:

 

  1. Do you recommend using Cura? Is there a better program?

  2. Is there a guide somewhere giving detailed fixes to certain problems with a print (ex. higher temp affects aspect 1 and feed rate affects aspect 2)

  3. Does anyone have any helpful tips that they think could help?

  4. How do you get rid of the string trail the hot end drags with it everywhere when it prints.

This is also a little unrelated but I am having an issue with brown liquid plastic oozing out of the threads of my heated block and nozzle. How can I fix this?

Any response is greatly appreciated. Thanks.

 

4. I couldn't strings are there and you can use only different software so it won't go through printed area (I guess developer need to think about usability as one of most important parts of designing software, well I guess he missed that day on University when they talked about that :p). Print3r can do it without problem !

I can't find solution for oozing (every time before I need to print I wait till it will be warm, then I taking excess from nozzle).

Of course I will propose you to create own heated bed, blue tape, kapton etc. is very unreliable and you can't print with ABS on it... And ABS is really good (almost lack of oozing).

Throw away bed from UM as it is useless, buy aluminum sheet 4mm, 250x250, drill wholes, change compression springs (provided are very weak) on something what generates more KG, then isolate aluminum sheet, add MK2A heated bed, add glass (22x22 is ok) add printed on ABS plastic holders of glass and heated bed, then use clips to mount it to aluminum bed.

Of course add relay 12/24V 40A, connect it with UM board, then power source to heated bed and relay (do not connect source of power to UM, you simple can't, those components wont' hold current (I haven't checked shield for voltage, most ATmega works with 5V))...

Change firmware on your UM so it will support heated bed....

And you're ready to go.

Add heated chamber (print some hinges for acrylic sheets and mount it)

Throw away fan case for electronic (it's some cheap china cr*** and will sound like some old tractor after 2 days), print new case, mount 50x50mm fan.

Throw away fan mount from heat end and print in ABS new one....

For printing on PLA:

- add 10 grams of PVA to some glass jar or what ever, add 100 grams of water, stir. Heat your bed to 55-60 degrees, put one layer of that mixture, after it evaporate add another (in total 4-5 layers)

Heat bed to 60 degrees, print, after you finish give it time to cooler to around 30 degrees, it will fall off without issue

For ABS

- add around 10 grams of small pieces of ABS to jar, add around 80 grams of pure Acetone (use safety glasses, gloves and respirator mask (which will stop vapor gas and other chemicals, something what has commercial grade, not some simple gas mask from nearest shop)

Heat bed to around 100 degrees, print and wait...

UM is ok but technology is very far away from being well developed...

 

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I think that Carmamir over-plays the weaknesses of the Ultimaker, and ignores its many strengths. The current model can print PLA perfectly well with existing parts, on cold blue tape, if you wipe it down with isopropyl alcohol first. Slight tweaks to the hardware will help your experience, and refine the results further - but mostly it is a question of learning how to use the printer, and work within the current limitations of this technology, rather than anything that is specific to the Ultimaker, I think.

ABS is a different matter. Yes, realistically you will need a heated bed, and probably some other changes to your workflow and environment - but those changes stem from the nature of ABS, rather than the Ultimaker as well.

The Cura software is a good starting point, and it's well adapted to the needs of the Ultimaker. Daid has done a terrific job of advancing the state of slicers to the point where they are easy to understand. While there will always be room for improvement, the usability difference compared to the state of the art a couple of years ago - Skeinforge - is huge.

Sometimes you might get marks on flat finished surfaces as the head travels across them. I do think that is an area that Cura still can improve. But in general, the issue of strings in the air as the print head moves between parts is resolved by turning on retraction, and setting it correctly. The current version of Cura doesn't always retract when it arguably should on the inside of objects printed with zero infill - that can cause a real mess. But on the outside of objects, it uses it correctly, and when properly set up, stringing is pretty much eliminated.

Sadly there is no one right answer to the settings to use, or the way to solve problems. There are a lot of variables, and every print has different needs. It can take some getting used to - the fact that 3D printing operates in a continuum of speeds and qualities, with trade-offs at every step. For a lot of new users, especially more technical/computer-oriented ones, I think the tendency is to want to lock things down in terms of absolutes. And there really aren't any. The best approach I think is to try and find a sweet spot of moderate settings that work pretty well, and then carefully explore the space around those, trying controlled experiments to see how adjusting parameters affects things. Always bear in mind that there is no one right answer, and so stop trying to find it :-) The aim is always to get a print that is of sufficiently good quality for its intended purpose, while printing as quickly as possible.

 

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