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Material Station on an S5 and Materials

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials

Hello All

 

I am after some Ideas / Support on The Ultimater S5 Pro Bundle more specifically with the material station.

 

As we change from PP to PLA to PVA plus other materials we were really looking forward to this. But at the moment its letting us down.

 

2 main points.

 

D, E, F dont work. This will be raised with our resailer.

 

more importantly and frustratingly is material profiles are not available for all materials, and there is no way to know if it will work until you get your material and try load it in.

 

So there in lies my Biggest question. I would like to print with Xstrand PP GF30. This works if the material is connected direct to the printer, but not in the material station. 

 

I have extracted the profile and reviewed in in notpad, and compared with the um pp profile, and there seem to be many missing parameters.

 

So, like I had a play, and tryied to edit the profile / make my own/ Which is ok in cura, but it doesnt seem to send the new profile to the machine. (This may be because I didnt change the <GUID>

 

So what are you lads all doing? Just sticking to UM materials, Any help appreciated.

 

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials

Third party material profiles have to be modified by the manufacturer for usage of their materials in the Material Station. The important feature for this modification is the depriming. It has to happen in such a way that no strings or small filament parts can be lost on the way out and block the way for the next material. Therefore it has to be thoroughly tested and this needs some time. Afaik brands are working on these modifications.

This being said making your own profile for a third party material is of course possible. But you have to make sure that the depriming works flawless or you will probably face consequences which are outside warranty.

If new independent profiles are not sent to the printer, the problem usually is with Cura. Clearing the configuration folder and letting Cura re-initialize itself usually helps. You can also try to restore a known-good Cura backup.

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials

Hi

 

Given that not all filament manufacturers supply profiles for Ultimaker, there is going to be a lot of manual setup of filaments. I think some sort of detailed instructions on how to set one up are called for.....

 

Back to trying to figure out why B,C,D,E, and F don't work on my printer..... (when loaded with legit Ultimaker filament).

 

Bob

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials

 I gave up and sent it back!

 

Why ultimaker didn't put the deprimer inside the station before the feeders I have no idea; then you could quickly retract, change and have the station priming the now unloaded filament without holding up the machine. 

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials
19 minutes ago, Sassw said:

 I gave up and sent it back!

 

Why ultimaker didn't put the deprimer inside the station before the feeders I have no idea; then you could quickly retract, change and have the station priming the now unloaded filament without holding up the machine. 

 

Hi

 

I think the simple answer is that they want a "clean break" at the print head. That way there is nothing in any Bowden tube anywhere. With a normal manual feed retract you have the potential for a long thread on the end of the filament. It comes off / comes out from the machine when you remove the spool. With the material station it could be long enough to be who knows where .... There is no way to just deal with it "downstairs" as far as I can see. 

 

Bob

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials

I'm having a heck of a time with PVA printing properly. I have 2 spools of PVA that were recently purchased. I let them sit in the station for 3days. Most times the filament never reaches the print core. Is there a way to manually prime the filament?

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials
7 minutes ago, greatg said:

I'm having a heck of a time with PVA printing properly. I have 2 spools of PVA that were recently purchased. I let them sit in the station for 3days. Most times the filament never reaches the print core. Is there a way to manually prime the filament?

Hi

 

I'm sure there is a way to force the filament through manually. The gotcha is that the firmware will not realize the material is loaded ( or it will treat it as an error). Either way you have a failure. 

 

Despite the filament being new, I'd try drying it out. I happen to like vacuum dryers, but there are lots of ways to get the job done. Without knowing just what's failing in the load, there isn't much else I can guess as being a fix ( feeder tension would be the next thing on the list ...). 

 

Bob

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Posted (edited) · Material Station on an S5 and Materials

Watch your PVA as it is loading to see where it stops. I had same problem  and found that a piece of PVA had broken off just before and inside the extruder. Likely this happened at the end of the print when material station was retracting filament.

The new mostly full roll of UM PVA in material station for a few days was now very brittle, and would snap off when I tried to straighten the end by hand before re-inserting.

I have my suspicions that the brittle PVA is due to being too dry, and this may be an issue in places where humidity is very low naturally in winter and may be made worse by the material station. No proof yet.

I believe UM PVA that absorbs moisture gets soft and flexible, Not brittle. More drying may not be your solution if you too are having brittle PVA issues.

Not yet sure what the best plan is to soften brittle PVA without going too far. I may have to leave my material station door open in Winter.

Edited by D95
Typo

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials

I've given up on the material station! When I went back to the "old" S5 set up, the PVA material loaded without any issues! I think the material station is a good concept, but not ready for the real world!

 

On a side note. I primarily print PLA. What are my options for other support materials besides PVA?

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Posted (edited) · Material Station on an S5 and Materials

Hi

 

I think it's a bit early to declare the material station dead. If you want a tried and tested device, wait a year. That's true on anything associated with 3D printing. There are always issues early on. Generally they get worked out. What will the device do a year from now? Who knows .... Here's what I'd *hope* it will do:

 

1) Dump way less filament on startup. If that much is required for some odd filament, make the process configurable. 

2) Stay primed as the default (rather than un-prime at the end of a job)

3) Have at least *some* instructions on using the device (like loading ....)

4) Have a bit more documentation on setting up custom filament profiles. (and how to test them).

5) Do a *much* better job with feed failures ( = save the print as the primary goal )

6) Provide some sort of estimate of the filament in the machine ( if I have 5 partial rolls, what do the tags say they have left on them ....).

7) Turn off ( or at least turn down) the lights

8 ) An option to "piggy back load" filament . ( = just send in the next batch and accept that retract will be an issue)

9) Control over which spool to start a job with ( as opposed to just using first loaded)

10) Eliminate all "reboot to exit this screen" error messages, regardless of cause. 

 

Those are in no particular order. I'd bet half a warm bottle of beer that no more than half of them will ever "make it" to production. That's fine. They are only a wish list. 

 

 

========

 

Edit 20 hours later .....

 

At this point bucket A on the material station is down with something seriously wrong. The sensor that normally detects filament insertion on load no longer does. This came up last night ( = Saturday night). Indeed come Monday, I'll start making contact with the support people. That's the only option I have. Not knowing what it is, that *may* be the only approach. From past experience with filament sensors on other devices ... something is stuck in there and it needs a cleaning. With no instructions on how to get to it, that's not an option. 

 

( Full details on the failure: Filament extracted about 8" back from the extruder and then jammed. That part has been cleared .... at least I think it's been cleared ... Filament is not sensed in either the extruder 1 or extruder 2 inputs for bucket A )

 

Bob

Edited by uncle_bob
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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials
On 1/24/2020 at 12:01 AM, wdeighton said:

I would like to print with Xstrand PP GF30. This works if the material is connected direct to the printer, but not in the material station. 

 

Hi, thank you for your message. The profiles for materials supported in our marketplace are being actively worked on as we speak and should be made available in batches in the near future. 

 

On 1/24/2020 at 1:12 PM, Dim3nsioneer said:

Third party material profiles have to be modified by the manufacturer for usage of their materials in the Material Station. The important feature for this modification is the depriming. It has to happen in such a way that no strings or small filament parts can be lost on the way out and block the way for the next material. Therefore it has to be thoroughly tested and this needs some time.

 

Exactly because of these reasons. 

 

On 1/24/2020 at 1:54 PM, uncle_bob said:

Back to trying to figure out why B,C,D,E, and F don't work on my printer

 

Hi @uncle_bob, I would be curious to get more information on why they don't work or what makes you think why they don't work. We would love to help you. 

 

On 1/24/2020 at 4:24 PM, greatg said:

Most times the filament never reaches the print core.

 

Hi, can you elaborate on what is happening why it does not reach the print core? As Uncle_Bob said, the Material Station is more aimed at keeping your material dry, instead of drying it when it is wet. Depending on the shipping conditions or what happened to the material before it was packed or inserted in the Material Station, it could be worth your while to dry it before loading it. 

 

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials
4 hours ago, SandervG said:

 

Hi, thank you for your message. The profiles for materials supported in our marketplace are being actively worked on as we speak and should be made available in batches in the near future. 

 

 

Exactly because of these reasons. 

 

 

Hi @uncle_bob, I would be curious to get more information on why they don't work or what makes you think why they don't work. We would love to help you. 

 

 

Hi, can you elaborate on what is happening why it does not reach the print core? As Uncle_Bob said, the Material Station is more aimed at keeping your material dry, instead of drying it when it is wet. Depending on the shipping conditions or what happened to the material before it was packed or inserted in the Material Station, it could be worth your while to dry it before loading it. 

 

 

Hi

 

All the details of my multi bucket 2AM failure on the material station are in the "other thread" on the material station. I saw your question there before I saw it here. Indeed the cascade failure has not happened again and operator error could have been part of the issue. Also I'd guess that lots and lots of power cycles / reboots could get things into a bit of a mess. 

 

======

 

Is there any detailed explanation / definition / help on the various parameters associated with how a filament functions in the material station? Some of it is pretty obvious (retract distances / speeds / temperatures). Other items ( surface energy, no load move factor) are a bit obscure. Even their connection to the material station is a bit unclear other than comments in git hub code on the fdm_matterial file format. The fact that the move factor gets carried out to 9 decimal places is a bit exciting. Measuring anything to that level .... yikes ....

 

Bob

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials
34 minutes ago, uncle_bob said:

Is there any detailed explanation / definition / help on the various parameters associated with how a filament functions in the material station? Some of it is pretty obvious (retract distances / speeds / temperatures). Other items ( surface energy, no load move factor) are a bit obscure. Even their connection to the material station is a bit unclear other than comments in git hub code on the fdm_matterial file format. The fact that the move factor gets carried out to 9 decimal places is a bit exciting. Measuring anything to that level .... yikes ....

 

We are working on expanding the resources available, but defining these terms specifically is not something on the agenda on the short term. Sorry. Perhaps if you are interested in a specific few, you could list them here and when an engineer has time while browsing the forum he could perhaps elaborate on them for you. 

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials

Hi

 

I'm more concerned with an "overview" look at the variables (and process of generating them) than any one specific number. The end goal is to be able to tweak profiles so they work better in the material station. That said "no load move factor" indeed has me wondering just what it could be .... I suspect I'll have to by somebody a beer .... 🙂

 

Bob

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials
On 1/27/2020 at 5:45 AM, SandervG said:

 

Hi, thank you for your message. The profiles for materials supported in our marketplace are being actively worked on as we speak and should be made available in batches in the near future. 

 

 

Exactly because of these reasons. 

 

 

Hi @uncle_bob, I would be curious to get more information on why they don't work or what makes you think why they don't work. We would love to help you. 

 

 

Hi, can you elaborate on what is happening why it does not reach the print core? As Uncle_Bob said, the Material Station is more aimed at keeping your material dry, instead of drying it when it is wet. Depending on the shipping conditions or what happened to the material before it was packed or inserted in the Material Station, it could be worth your while to dry it before loading it. 

 

So,I have purchased 2 new spools of PVA from local dealer, and I dried my existing spools using the Ultimaker suggested process. One of the new spools loads OK. Print starts and runs for 4 hrs. The I get an error 56. Have to pull the power plug to clear the error and the I have to manually remove the filament as the unload feature is grayed out. That's another failed print. Next I try my dried filament. Run the load sequence and get Error 57. Pull power plug, try different bay, loads but doesn't reach extruder. During the priming process no material is extruded unless I apply force to move the filament along. This only works for a few seconds an another error 57 pops up. When reverting back to original S5 sans material station, PVA loads and prints OK. Sometimes I get message that the filament has run out? Seems like PVA is a real PIA!!

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials
4 minutes ago, greatg said:

So,I have purchased 2 new spools of PVA from local dealer, and I dried my existing spools using the Ultimaker suggested process. One of the new spools loads OK. Print starts and runs for 4 hrs. The I get an error 56. Have to pull the power plug to clear the error and the I have to manually remove the filament as the unload feature is grayed out. That's another failed print. Next I try my dried filament. Run the load sequence and get Error 57. Pull power plug, try different bay, loads but doesn't reach extruder. During the priming process no material is extruded unless I apply force to move the filament along. This only works for a few seconds an another error 57 pops up. When reverting back to original S5 sans material station, PVA loads and prints OK. Sometimes I get message that the filament has run out? Seems like PVA is a real PIA!!

 

Hi

 

If this was happening on my printer, I'd do a series of hot / cold pulls. I'd also pop the feeder open and clean / blow it out. Last I'd make sure the spring tension on the feeder was correct as I re-assembled it. (mentioned mainly because I often overlook that last step). 

 

If all that did not solve the problem, it's off to swap the core and start looking at Bowden tubes. 

 

Bob

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials

Did the hot pulls and swapped the core. Will have to have a look at the tension of the feeder. What seems strange is that without the material station loading is not an issue (not feeder problem).

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Posted (edited) · Material Station on an S5 and Materials

Hi

 

There's no doubt that the Material Station adds a bit of drag to the whole process. What was a "marginal but works" setup is now in the "not so much" category. I've spent a lot of time on the UM3's chasing feed issues.  Often there is no one single / obvious reason for the problem. 

 

=========

 

One thing I've often wondered about (but never really addressed) is running filament type A and then switching to filament type B. If the two have very different characteristics they may not play nice if mixed. Clearing out *all* of A before B comes could be quite difficult. Say one is a 250C material and the other is a 190C. The 190C may turn to carbon before the 250 melts. 

 

Yes that digression likely has absolutely nothing at all to do with your problem. (The PVA prints on a different core) .... sorry about that 🙂

 

====

 

You *might* try bumping the temperature on the PVA up a bit. On anything other than an Ultimaker, that would be very early in the debug list. The obvious risk is making things worse.

 

Bob

Edited by uncle_bob

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials

Hi @greatg, thank you for sharing your experiences. 

Could you share a picture of the tip of your filament that you are trying to feed? Is it pointy so it is unlikely that it will grip behind anything? 

You're saying that you get an error before the filament reaches the feeder on the S5 right? Does it exit the decoupler? 

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials

Hello All

 

As a follow on form our Story.

We had our training today, and took the opportunity to go through our issues.

D E F is not working. This seems to have been poor assembly at the factory. The PDB wasn't well seated, and therefore not connection well.

 

WE also had developed an issue with Extruded 2 loading, They found some broken filament in the material station. Removed it, put it back together and all worked fine. for a while. Did 2 prints with PLA PVA all loaded / unloaded fine. During the 3rd print, load failed, and now I seem to have a blockage in the Material Station again. As with others this is also with PVA. PITA!!!

 

So to get out, I loaded the material on the back, and set the print off.

 

Trainers said that this station is only really months old, and because of this the developers are still playing. They said to be patient....... Grr... I just want it to work consistently.

 

Interesting to hear other having similar issues and supporting each other. Keep it up. Its good four our community, and for the developers that pop in to support from time to time.

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials
37 minutes ago, wdeighton said:

This seems to have been poor assembly at the factory. The PDB wasn't well seated, and therefore not connection well.

 

I STRONGLY doubt UM didn't test it at the factory.  Much more likely these problems occurred in shipping.  It's amazing how badly packages can be treated by DHL.  I've seen printers that arrive at customers as obvious parallelograms instead of box shape.

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Posted (edited) · Material Station on an S5 and Materials

Hi

 

Ok, the rest of the info on the "magic" PCB and clips:

 

The main circuit board in the Material Station is held in place with a bunch of plastic "clips". The bottom of the printed circuit board has plated contact areas on it. There are spring loaded contacts on the assemblies below the PCB. If the clips come loose, no more spring force on the contacts and no more function from those assemblies.

 

The board is roughly as long as the Material Station is wide. ( = it's. a pretty long board ) It's not going to take a lot of nonsense (twist / bump / shake) in shipping to get a clip started loose. Once one comes off, I suspect you will get a "cascade failure" of the others. 

 

Fixing the issue is likely a one time thing (we'll see) and it takes < 10 minutes. The worst part by far is lifting the S5 off of the Material Station to get at it. 

 

At least in my case, the feeder process *did* work fine "as delivered" the clip finally let go far enough well after things were set up and prints had been run. 

 

What if it keeps happening? A couple very carefully placed gob's of electronic grade RTV would lock those clips in place pretty much forever. If you need to disassemble, the RTV will peal off. Yes, that would be more of a hassle than the current approach.

 

Bob

Edited by uncle_bob
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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials
On 1/30/2020 at 7:32 AM, SandervG said:

Hi @greatg, thank you for sharing your experiences. 

Could you share a picture of the tip of your filament that you are trying to feed? Is it pointy so it is unlikely that it will grip behind anything? 

You're saying that you get an error before the filament reaches the feeder on the S5 right? Does it exit the decoupler? 

Hi @SandervG, The filament is clipped at a 45 deg. It does exit the decoupler and then never reaches the feeder. I usually have to manually pull the filament out and feed it through the feeder, along with a few more error codes and power pulls...

20200131_133434.jpg

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials
On 1/30/2020 at 7:42 PM, wdeighton said:

Hello All

 

As a follow on form our Story.

We had our training today, and took the opportunity to go through our issues.

D E F is not working. This seems to have been poor assembly at the factory. The PDB wasn't well seated, and therefore not connection well.

 

WE also had developed an issue with Extruded 2 loading, They found some broken filament in the material station. Removed it, put it back together and all worked fine. for a while. Did 2 prints with PLA PVA all loaded / unloaded fine. During the 3rd print, load failed, and now I seem to have a blockage in the Material Station again. As with others this is also with PVA. PITA!!!

 

So to get out, I loaded the material on the back, and set the print off.

 

Trainers said that this station is only really months old, and because of this the developers are still playing. They said to be patient....... Grr... I just want it to work consistently.

 

Interesting to hear other having similar issues and supporting each other. Keep it up. Its good four our community, and for the developers that pop in to support from time to time.

We've been having the exact problem with our S5 bundle. no end of problems. Glad to hear we are not the only ones having a terrible experience with this.

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Posted · Material Station on an S5 and Materials

Same thing here guys. Endless issues with the material station usually related to UM PVA getting stuck somewhere.

At this point we get an ER 50 error that we cannot clear even though we unseated the board and re-clipped it back on.

With the material station off everything works fine.

We already have an active ticket.

Im thinking that the material station was simply not ready for to be released!

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