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Cannot load and unload filament


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Posted · Cannot load and unload filament

Your profile says you have an S3 which means you don't have a material station which means things are simpler.


1) On the feeder there is a lever - you lift that lever and now the filament should slide in or out of the core. 

2) If the filament froze in the core (shouldn't ever happen but it's possible) then on the printer heat the core to normal melting temperature (e.g. 200C for PLA).  Once it gets up to temperature pull down on the filament at the base of the feeder (again while that lever is up so the feeder isn't fighting you.

3) If it still won't come out wait a few minutes.  No more than 3 minutes as many filaments (ABS) will get more difficult.  This pause is to let the heat creep up into the core a bit more.  For PLA you can let it sit at 200C for 30 minutes no problem.  For PVA or ABS 3 minutes max.

3) If it still won't come out - pull quite hard.  You can pull with 10 pounds/5kg of force and that's a lot of force and should be enough to get it out.

4) If it still won't come out remove the bowden at the top of the core - slide out that horse shoe shaped clip and don't lose it!!!!  Put it somewhere safe!  Treat it like gold unless you already have spares.  now push down on the outer ring while lifting firmly on the bowden tube.  Some people use needle nose pliers to hold down on 2 sides of the ring while lifting on the bowden.


4b) Now push the print head to a corner so you don't bend the rods as you are going to lift with enough force to bend the rods and/or lift the printer off the table.  Pull up hard on that filament.  Alternatively you can twist the filament.  Even at room temperature, the combination of lifting with 10 pounds of force and twisting the filament will pull that filament out of the head.


5) After the filament breaks and comes out if it breaks above the top of the core, the core is now stuck.  You can get it out by cutting the filament just above the core.  There is a tiny gap.  I've done this with a hot exacto blade.  I use a flame to heat the exacto blade and some of the exacto.  The blade glows meaning it gets to 600C in just a few seconds (it's small) but it also cools quite quickly.  Cut only for 1 second and remove the blade before it gets frozen into the filament.  Reheat the blade and continue the cut.  For me it took two heatings to get through the filament.


90% of the time step 1 is enough

If not then usually step 2 is enough.  

Only one in 10,000 prints should get you to step 4 or 5.

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