Questions tagged [knowledgebase]

For frequently asked questions or questions that discuss the basics of 3D printing.

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What scale of accuracy in measurement tools is required to verify a FFF item's specs based on the technology properties?

Measurements in machining often are done to an accuracy of "thou" which is thousands of an inch, or about 0.0254 mm. The measurement equipment for such is usually to an accuracy of tens or ...
Trish's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
170 views

How do I calculate the theoretical max speed of a motor?

I'd like to know how to estimate the maximum speed of a stepper motor before the torque drop-off. There are several existing calculators of varying degrees of complexity for that: RepRap calculator ...
Bracula's user avatar
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11 votes
1 answer
2k views

What is the difference between a Bowden extruder and a direct drive extruder?

As these are the two most commonly used extruder systems in FDM printers, I would like to know what is the difference between them. What are the advantages and disadvantages of using each of them?
kosteklvp's user avatar
  • 1,181
2 votes
1 answer
267 views

How much weaker does PETG become when it absorbs as much moisture as it can hold?

How much weaker does a PETG part become when it absorbs as much moisture as it can hold?
manarinian's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
93 views

Has anyone written a primer for hobbyists new to 3D printing?

Most of the guides I can find are just canned responses to specific questions. Instead I'm looking for something meant to teach good fundamental understanding and core needed skills. Beginner's guides ...
when squared equals a negative's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
3k views

How to properly run a PID Tuning and update the firmware?

The Firmware Step-by-step guide remarks to only mess with PID-Tuning settings in the firmware when you know what you are doing. Apparently, defining those settings in the firmware is a somewhat ...
Trish's user avatar
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18 votes
2 answers
2k views

Why is a 3D Benchy considered a good test print for FDM printers?

the 3D Benchy is everywhere. It is one of the top test prints if you look away from a simple cube. But what makes the Benchy a good test print at all? It does have almost no critical dimensions that ...
Trish's user avatar
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6 votes
2 answers
3k views

What is homing? What is the purpose of homing?

A 3D printer needs to be homed (homing) before the print starts. What is homing? What is the purpose of homing? Is it necessary?
0scar's user avatar
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6 votes
1 answer
14k views

What is ABL or UBL? Is this the same?

When looking at Marlin firmware or reading on leveling of the printer bed the term ABL and UBL are frequently used. What are ABL and UBL? Are they the same?
0scar's user avatar
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9 votes
1 answer
2k views

Automatic Bed Leveling (ABL) with a sensor (BLTouch, inductive, capacitive), how does it work?

A frequently discussed update to a 3D printer is the so-called leveling sensor; this sensor can be inductive, capacitive, optical or mechanical (i.e pressure or physically touching, like a BLTouch). ...
0scar's user avatar
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10 votes
1 answer
50k views

Using auto-bed leveling, do I need to initiate G29 before every print?

Various methods to scan the top surface exist to improve the bed adhesion to prevent prints to come loose from the bed during printing: e.g. BLTouch and clones or inductive and capacitive sensors/...
0scar's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
2k views

How to replace the nozzle in my hotend assembly?

What should I take care of to replace the nozzle of the hotend assembly the right way? What kind of data, precautions, tools, steps, and verification are important for replacing the nozzle? The ...
octopus8's user avatar
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-1 votes
1 answer
167 views

Writing G-Code: length-optimized Test code

I want to write a couple of very simple G-code test cases in Marlin-Style to make sure my printer works properly. The idea is to test the movement system, then the end-stops, then the heating and ...
Trish's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
590 views

What are the pros and cons of Painters tape?

Painters tape is a common quick fix to adhesion problems, and we know it doesn't need to be blue, but it is often recommended not to do. Why? When is painters tape best used or skipped upon?
2 votes
1 answer
5k views

How do I know if a filament is abrasive?

There are tons of fancy filaments around. And a lot are super nice to look at or have super cool properties, like carbon-filled nylon being comparatively far stronger than other material, wood fill is ...
Trish's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
27k views

Updating Marlin Firmware - Step by Step Guide

Note: This question is meant as a wiki to include all steps that are needed to update your printer with a self configured Marlin firmware version. The answer is a wiki that is currently in development ...
3 votes
2 answers
10k views

M502 will reset all configurable settings to their "factory defaults", which settings are those?

From the M502 documentation page can be read that M502: Reset all configurable settings to their factory defaults. Please ...
0scar's user avatar
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6 votes
2 answers
10k views

How to calculate the proper layer height multiples?

We all know, that the best layer hight is, when you have multiples of full steps. If it is not, sometimes steps get skipped and end up bad layer-to-layer adhesion when one height step missed a tiny ...
Trish's user avatar
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8 votes
2 answers
4k views

How to pause a print to insert something in a cavity using Ultimaker Cura?

I have a model that contains a cavity, into which I want to insert a piece of metal, so I can use a magnet to stick to the print. How can I introduce a pause into the G-code without manipulating it ...
Trish's user avatar
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14 votes
2 answers
23k views

What is a printer console/terminal?

I read that G-code commands can be sent through a console/terminal over USB. What is a console/terminal and how do you use that?
0scar's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
24k views

How to activate Power Loss Recovery in Marlin?

Standard Marlin has one problem: when the power suddenly is gone, the print is gone. Prusa and many china printers however come with "Power Loss Recovery" or "Power Out Protection" or similar. But ...
Trish's user avatar
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8 votes
3 answers
4k views

Why do different drivers change the noise of steppers?

I've upgraded my stepper drivers. I'm looking to understand why my stepper motors made noise in the first place.
Moana Springfeild's user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
5k views

What is the functional difference between an e3D-Style nozzle, Makerbot MK8 and M6 Chinesium Nozzles?

There is pretty much an ecosystem of two Nozzle designs out there that share the M6 thread on the coupler to the Heating block: the e3D "snub nose" or "shouldered" design. the "Chinesium" nozzle ...
Trish's user avatar
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6 votes
2 answers
201 views

Which software do I need to start print something?

I'm still new to 3D printing and I want to print something. I expect that I'll mess it up since I find nothing to adjust it but it is now laying around for 4 months and I'm sick of it. So my question ...
rekire's user avatar
  • 253
5 votes
1 answer
2k views

How does a UV LCD 3D resin printer work?

I've been wondering this for a while, and have searched for hours and have found nothing except undetailed explanations and projects. How does a UV LCD 3D resin printer cure resin exactly? I ...
1Ghasthunter1's user avatar
20 votes
2 answers
34k views

What is Thermal Runaway Protection?

What is Thermal Runaway Protection (TRP) and why should I enable it? How does one do so in Marlin?
Trish's user avatar
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20 votes
1 answer
61k views

How to set Z-probe boundary limits in firmware when using automatic bed leveling?

In setting up a probe for automatic bed leveling, the limits of the probing area must be entered in the firmware of a 3D printer. When using a sensor, how do you define the bed limits for the sensor ...
0scar's user avatar
  • 35.8k
10 votes
1 answer
4k views

Slicer line width vs. extrusion multiplier for layer adhesion?

My question would like to address what would be better for adhesion and general quality and possibly strength: either increase the slicer line width option or increase the slicer extrusion multiplier ...
0scar's user avatar
  • 35.8k
16 votes
4 answers
33k views

Why is it conventional to set line width > nozzle diameter?

I recently became curious about the Line Width setting in Cura and why one might change it if they aren't using different size nozzle. Since I've gotten my Ender 3, I've always kept the line width ...
ifconfig's user avatar
  • 911
5 votes
2 answers
1k views

What special considerations must be taken when designing parts for 3D printing?

What are the 'headline' basic design rules for FDM? Which topics for design principles do you recommend to someone who has purchased an FDM machine and wants to understand what is practical? In ...
cmm's user avatar
  • 4,521
24 votes
4 answers
60k views

What glues for bonding printed PLA to injection-molded plastic?

I will be creating a small tube styled piece to use as a junction between two pieces of plastic. The idea is to reattach the two pieces and provide strength so they don't break apart again. I plan on ...
Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2's user avatar
8 votes
1 answer
13k views

How do I calibrate the extruder of my printer?

For my DIY coreXY printer I use 2.85 mm filament that is fed into an E3D clone hotend using a Bowden tube and a custom designed extruder with belt reduction centered around an Aluminium Bulldog ...
0scar's user avatar
  • 35.8k
12 votes
3 answers
140k views

Recalibrating Home-position

I got myself the Ender 3. The Home position is about 1 mm left and 2 mm in front of the front left corner. Now, the hotend center axis is 11 mm from the carrier plate with the "Mk 10" cooler ...
Trish's user avatar
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13 votes
2 answers
81k views

How to center my prints on the build platform? (Re-calibrate homing offset)

When I print large prints close to (but not exceeding) the maximum dimensions of the heated build platform on my Anet A8, the brim or skirt or the print itself is printed outside the heated bed, while ...
0scar's user avatar
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6 votes
7 answers
7k views

Fix ghosting problem (damping versus bolting printer to a desk)

I have a Monoprice Maker Select v2. It is the kind where the moving plate (heat bed) provides the Y-axis and the moving extruder provides the X-axis. It has a fairly rigid sheet metal frame. In ...
user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
15k views

What causes "ghosting"?

I am printing some minion chess pieces for my teacher at school and on every model I have found something called "ghosting", or at least I heard that is what it is called. For example there is a strap ...
Ljk2000's user avatar
  • 1,253
8 votes
2 answers
771 views

3D printing references for beginners [duplicate]

I have just received a 3D printer for Christmas (Robo R2). I am confused by the sheer amount of settings that I can tweak and I'm hesitant to do so until I know more about them. I was wondering if ...
David Reed's user avatar
8 votes
3 answers
723 views

Are there any "best" or at least "common" practices to handle allowances in OpenSCAD code?

I'm designing a few mechanisms with OpenSCAD, and one of the parameters that need adjustment between printers/filaments is allowances between pieces that need to be assembled together (for example, if ...
mac's user avatar
  • 4,715
20 votes
2 answers
22k views

How may I identify the firmware in use on my 3D printer?

I have a generic printer with no support documentation. How do I determine what firmware is in use so that I can research how to make the print run?
Gord's user avatar
  • 219
23 votes
5 answers
12k views

Should I enclose my 3D Printer?

I have a home built RepRap with all sides open.. Would there be any advantage to enclosing the print area in acrylic?
Matt Clark's user avatar
  • 2,000
12 votes
2 answers
22k views

How to choose an extrusion temperature?

From what I've been able to find out, online sources recommend around 205ºC for PLA and around 240ºC for ABS. But these are only guidelines, of course. Optimal printing temperature can be different ...
mhelvens's user avatar
  • 1,001
10 votes
3 answers
21k views

What's the advantage of two z motors?

Some RepRap models use only a single motor for the Z axis, others use two. For example, there is the 3drag that has only one motor and a smooth rod on the other side. There are modifications that add ...
nnscr's user avatar
  • 103