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I'm seeing the following pattern on my Prusa clone:

Photo of low quality second layer print

The first layer prints OK, layer adhesion to the bed is good. The second layer shows the weird gaps. On larger pieces, or with an increased feed rate, it sometimes gets so bad that parts of the second layer detach and are dragged across the print. I get the impression that this effect is worse when printing in the "top left to bottom right" direction, but not as bad when printing in the "top right to bottom left" direction.

This occurs with multiple filaments and materials. I've already tried to manipulate the flow rate, temperatures and print speed, but gotten little improvement if any.

What might be causing this issue?

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    $\begingroup$ I wouldn't describe that as an "OK" first layer. The nozzle is either too far from the bed, or you're underextruding. Underextrusion also looks like the cause of your second layer problems. $\endgroup$ – Tom van der Zanden Nov 24 '16 at 19:13
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    $\begingroup$ @TomvanderZanden, to me that seems like a viable answer, and not a just a comment. :-) $\endgroup$ – Tormod Haugene Nov 25 '16 at 14:36
  • $\begingroup$ Have you tried a different slicer? I like to use Cura, as even with the best settings on Slic3r I cant get anywhere near as good a print to when I use Cura. $\endgroup$ – Festivejelly Dec 20 '16 at 14:01
  • $\begingroup$ Yes, I've switched to Simplify3D in the meantime, with much more consistent results. Too baad @TomvanderZanden didn't post an answer I could accept :-) $\endgroup$ – vwegert Dec 20 '16 at 17:59
  • $\begingroup$ @vwegert Tomvanderzanden has added an answer now :) I think it would be beneficial to keep an eye on this question though, because an explicit answer would help others in the long run. $\endgroup$ – tbm0115 Dec 20 '16 at 20:40
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I wouldn't describe that as an "OK" first layer. The nozzle is either too far from the bed, or you're underextruding. Underextrusion also looks like the cause of your second layer problems.

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  • $\begingroup$ Any ideas on how to fix under-extrusion in Slic3r, Cura, or whatever OP was using? $\endgroup$ – tbm0115 Dec 20 '16 at 20:42
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Your first layer is horribly misscalibrated as well.

You really should do all calibrations over. Including your firmware when your result is this bad.

Following. Let's just assume your firmware is set right. And that your flow is right as well. The second layer speaks loudly of overcooked dribbling plastic. You might have a jam. Maybe the factory left some metal shavings in the hot end. I've had it happen. Try taking apart the extruded. Make sure there are no obstructions. Clean the tip with a micro hand drill bit.

After that we will need more info. Post your settings. Your might have underflow (you set filiment size higher than it is) and have temperature so hot your are literally boiling the plastic and it is all dripping sparatically instead of controlled.

Having temp too high can increase carbonization build ups and creats Jams. Did you ever have a good print ? My money is on a partial obstruction.

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