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Difference between revisions of "Prusa Mendel Documentation"

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[[Category:RepRap]]
[[Category:RepRap]]


This is the page on how to use the newly built Prusa Mendel (iteration 2). A PC has been dedicated to run it, below you will find the toolchain used to run it and other details that you may find useful. [[File:HacDCprusaMendel2013-02-11.jpg|500px|right]]
More detailed documentation on the newly built Prusa Mendel (iteration 2). A PC has been dedicated to run it, below you will find the toolchain used to run it and other details that you may find useful.
 
=Current Machine Status=
 
'''Repairs and Upgrade In Progress'''


=Workflow=
=Workflow=
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: UNSUPPORTED, WILL DAMAGE PRINTER. Used by old makerbot.
: UNSUPPORTED, WILL DAMAGE PRINTER. Used by old makerbot.


=Maintenance=
=Extra Maintenance=
==Safety - ALWAYS CHECK==
===FIRE HAZARDS===
*Power Supply. NEVER leave ATX power supply on after leaving HacDC, it gets hot.
*Temperature Sensor. NEVER heat the bed without temperature sensor in place.
===Machine Damage===
*Loose wires. Short circuits can cause severe damage.
*Lose bolts. In particular, check the endstop bolts.
*X/Y endstops. Manually push X/Y axes to test the switches.
*Z-axis endstop. Visually check that it will trigger before severe crash into print bed.
*Extruder gears. Must mesh closely, or will chip. Fortunately, these are easily replaced/repaired.
 
==Malfunction==
==Malfunction==
*Only grease with PTFE SuperLube, kept at HacDC next to printer.
*Grease smooth rods and Z-Axis threaded rod if axes show signs of binding.
*Grease smooth rods and Z-Axis threaded rod if axes show signs of binding.
*Only grease with PTFE SuperLube, kept at HacDC next to RepRap.
*Tighten timing belts if not taunt.
*Floss the hobbed bolt in the extruder.
*Floss the hobbed bolt in the extruder.
*Tighten timing belts if necessary.
*Replace linear bearings if they are grinding, slipping laterally, or otherwise ruined.
*Replace linear bearings if they are grinding, slipping laterally, or otherwise ruined.
==Bed Cleaning==
*Bare glass bed must be extremely clean. If bed is level to within 0.25mm, and plastic is not sticking, it needs cleaning. Take glass to sink, apply dishwashing soap, sponge, and elbow grease.
*Blue paper tape may be used on glass or polycarbonate bed. Surface adhesion is more predictable. Downside is the need to occasionally replace the paper tape.
*Polycarbonate bed should be kept flat, without excessive protrusions. Scrape excess plastic off, and trim deep cuts.
==Print Depth==
*First-layer depth. Bare glass bed requires exactly 0.2mm between nozzle and bed. Polycarbonate and paper tape beds tolerate direct contact, allowing nozzle to be driven 0.4mm into the bed. In pronterface, home the Z-axis, then manually jog 0.1mm to verify these distances.
*Z-axis height. Z-axis endstop position sets depth for entire bed.
*Z-axis level. The dual threaded rods must be kept aligned.
*Bed leveling. Place Z-axis just above bed, then jog X/Y axes. Place thin paper strips under bed until level.


==Replacing filament/changing spools==
==Replacing filament/changing spools==
#Turn on the printer, open pronterface, and connect to the printer (instructions above)
#Turn on the printer, open pronterface, and connect to the printer.
#If there is filament sticking out of the top of the extruder, you'll need to remove it
#If there is filament sticking out of the top of the extruder, you'll need to remove it.
#Set the hotend temperature (175-185 degrees Celsius for PLA)
#Set the hotend temperature (175-185 degrees Celsius for PLA)
#When extruder is warmed up, raise the extruder (+z axis) so it's not touching the bed
#When extruder is warmed up, raise the extruder (+z axis) so it's not touching the bed.
#Click the reverse button while gently pulling upwards on the filament you wish to remove
#Click the reverse button while gently pulling upwards on the filament you wish to remove.
#Continue gently pulling and pressing reverse until the remaining filament is drawn out from the top of the extruder housing
#Continue gently pulling and pressing reverse until the remaining filament is drawn out from the top of the extruder housing.
#Once the filament has been removed, replace the spool
#Once the filament has been removed, replace the spool.
#Feed the new filament into the appropriate hole in the extruder housing
#Feed the new filament into the appropriate hole in the extruder housing.
#Gently press down on the filament while clicking "extrude" in pronterface. The extruder should grab the filament as you feed it
#Gently press down on the filament while clicking "extrude" in pronterface. The extruder should grab the filament as you feed it.
#Repeat the previous step until you see the new material being extruded from the tip
#Repeat the previous step until you see the new material being extruded from the tip.
#Sometimes it may be necessary to loosen the spring loaded screws on the extruder, and manually unload/load the extruder.


=Tips=
=Tips=
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*Always swing fans in during a print. They engage automatically as appropriate.
*Always swing fans in during a print. They engage automatically as appropriate.
*Bare glass bed is best for quality. Paper tape on glass is generally more convenient. Bare polycarbonate provides extremely strong adhesion, too strong above 45C.
*Bare glass bed is best for quality. Paper tape on glass is generally more convenient. Bare polycarbonate provides extremely strong adhesion, too strong above 45C.
=Operation=
#Emergency Stop. Be ready to unplug USB cable when beginning X/Y/Z motion.
#Go through the maintenance list as necessary, especially the safety section.
#Check which bed you are using. Bare glass recommended for quality. Adding blue paper tape can improve poor alignment and dirt tolerance.
#Turn on power strip. Switch on the ATX PSU behind the machine.
#Open pronterface. Connect to the printer. Check box "Watch" to see temperature readings. You should see about 20C on all temperature sensors, and basic stats in the console window. Optionally, set heated bed to 55C for bare glass. If you don't do this now, the printer will wait for the bed to heat up later.
#Load an STL model onto the dedicated laptop for printing. If you haven't made one, download one from [http://www.thingiverse.com/ Thingiverse].
#Clean the STL model. Load file in nefabb, click the red "+", "Automatic repair", "Default repair", "Apply repair", "Yes" - remove old part. Finally, export part as STL, repairing more errors if prompted.
#Open Slic3r. Drag your STL file from a file manager onto the "Drag your objects here" box in Slic3r.
#"Print settings: Cheap" "Filament: HacDC" "Printer: HacDC" .
#Export G-Code in Slic3r.
#Wait for Slic3r to finish. In pronterface, load the G-Code file you have created. A preview of the first layer should appear in the middle of Pronterface. You can click on the preview and walk through the layers by holding shift and scrolling on the trackpad. In the console (not the bottom bar), an accurate time estimate for the print should also appear.
#Once again, make sure you can push X and Y axes to their endstop switches without bumping anything. Also make sure there is not more than 1mm of ooze sticking out of the nozzle to avoid a bad extruder head crash into the bed.
#Click the "print" button.
#Wait for bed to cool. Apply gentle hammer taps with sharp pointy tool to the base of your object. After a few gentle taps in various places, it will usually pop off the bed cleanly.
=Please Avoid=
You are adding to the workload on a shared machine. Please be gentle.
*NEVER leave ATX power supply on after leaving HacDC, it gets hot.
*NEVER heat the bed without temperature sensor in place.
*Printing faster than 65mm/s without acceleration incurs excessive stress and more frequent maintenance.
*Manually moving Z-axis threaded rods delevels machine, which takes time to fix.
*Raw polycarbonate bed above 45C will have extremely strong adhesion. Even if you can remove your part, you will likely warp the bed doing so.


=Slic3r Settings=
=Slic3r Settings=
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==Print Settings==
==Print Settings==
===Cheap===
===Cheap===
'''Default''' Fast, minimum material use. Virtually all parts will not benefit from the other settings.
High speed, low plastic consumption, lightweight part.
===Cautious===
===Quality===
Same as cheap, reduced speed. Some artistic parts with thin walls will benefit.
Maximizes quality and accuracy. Used for Prusa Mendel Replication.
===Thin===
===Solid===
Very low speed, nominal layer height, extra perimeters. Intended for extreme non-structural (artistic) components.
Ultra strong parts.
===Robust===
===Precision===
Solid, faithful parts. Use only for engineering parts requiring extreme strength (>10kg force across a few square millimeters).
75micron layer height, for parts with smaller features.
Voraciously consumes plastic, please use only if warranted.
===MountingPlate===
Specialized. Print layers directly on PCB heater to level the bed.
 
==FilamentSettings==
==FilamentSettings==
===Solid===
===HacDC===
185C Extrusion Temperature. Maximizes strength. Bridges >~3mm will droop badly.
Optimized for bare glass bed, solid parts, and fast printing. Decrease bed temperature to 45C for bare polycarbonate bed. Decreasing extrusion temperature to 167C may improve bridging but requires slowing down print speed, reduces quality, and weakens printout.
===Compromise===
 
175C Extrusion Temperature. Balances strength with better bridging.
===BridgeSafe===
167C Extrusion Temperature. Can pass the [http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:12925 bridge test]. Reduced mechanical strength, best for artistic parts.
==Printer Settings==
==Printer Settings==
Leave at "HacDC" unless you feel they need debugging.
Leave at "HacDC" unless you feel they need debugging.
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|-
|-
|juri
|juri
|Consultation on maintenance and multiple emergency repairs.
|-
|nully
|Consultation on maintenance and multiple emergency repairs.
|Consultation on maintenance and multiple emergency repairs.
|}
|}
*Several HacDC members for finance.
*Several HacDC members for initial capital.
*HacDC members for all [http://wiki.hacdc.org/index.php/Category:Project_Awesome Project Awesome] funds.
*Others.
*Others.


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* Tune trimpots on motor drivers
* Tune trimpots on motor drivers
* More Cable Management (Spiral wrap loose wires and ziptie down)
* More Cable Management (Spiral wrap loose wires and ziptie down)
* Add some example printouts to the wiki.
* Print spare parts.
* Print spare parts.
* Support KISSlicer for improved dimension accuracy in some cases.
* Experiment further with extrusion width settings, particularly perimeter widths.
* Experiment further with extrusion width settings, particularly perimeter widths.
* Thermal fuse print bed PCB heater for safety.


=Known Bugs=
=Known Bugs=
* Model holes will print the wrong size. The proper way to manage this is by keeping about 1.5mm per wall or 3mm diameter clearance in CAD models.
* Model holes will print the wrong size. The proper way to manage this is by keeping about 0.25mm per wall or 0.5mm diameter clearance in CAD models.


=Additional Resources=
=Additional Resources=
* "Slic3r is Nicer - Part 1 - Settings and Extruder Calibration" http://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2012/01/slic3r-is-nicer-part-1-settings-and.html
* "Slic3r is Nicer - Part 1 - Settings and Extruder Calibration" http://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2012/01/slic3r-is-nicer-part-1-settings-and.html
* A guide to calibrating and using slic3r: https://github.com/alexrj/Slic3r/wiki/Calibration
* A guide to calibrating and using slic3r: https://github.com/alexrj/Slic3r/wiki/Calibration

Revision as of 13:01, 26 April 2013


More detailed documentation on the newly built Prusa Mendel (iteration 2). A PC has been dedicated to run it, below you will find the toolchain used to run it and other details that you may find useful.

Workflow

CAD/Thingiverse -> Netfabb -> STL -> Slic3r -> Pronterface -> PRINT!

See operation section for a tutorial.

CAD
FreeCAD (free, open source) and SolidWorks (expensive, some extra features) offer intuitive sketch and constraint based modeling.
OpenSCAD uses programming code to describe 3D models.
And in case you don't want to model anything and simply want to print stuff, go to Thingiverse.
Netfabb
software for checking the "3D printability" of the model you created. Go to Netfabb and download the Studio Basic option. You can also simply use their cloud offering and have a repaired model emailed back to you.
if your model has issues, run the repair function with default settings and see if that remedies the issues. The repair function can be used by clicking the "first aid" symbol found at the far right on the tool bar.
STL
current format for 3D printing (AMF is coming around the corner).
at this point, your file should be patched up and ready to print.
Slic3r
software for creating 3d printing toolpaths
precompiled binaries can be had from Slic3r.org or be built built from github.
use the profiles already generated for best results.
Pronterface
GUI for controlling the Prusa.
where you will connect to the printer, home, warm up and send print jobs from.
can be built from github or download precompiled binaries for Windows/Mac here.
preview G-Code generated by Slic3r.
Print
File is good to go, toolpaths are generated, time to let the robot do what it does best, PRINT!

Materials

  • PLA - Polylactic Acid
Extremely ecologically friendly, made from corn starch, smells like waffles/syrup while printing.
Needs a fan for parts with overhang/bridging.
Low operating temperature (160C-200C).
  • ABS
UNSUPPORTED, WILL DAMAGE PRINTER. Used by old makerbot.

Extra Maintenance

Malfunction

  • Only grease with PTFE SuperLube, kept at HacDC next to printer.
  • Grease smooth rods and Z-Axis threaded rod if axes show signs of binding.
  • Tighten timing belts if not taunt.
  • Floss the hobbed bolt in the extruder.
  • Replace linear bearings if they are grinding, slipping laterally, or otherwise ruined.

Replacing filament/changing spools

  1. Turn on the printer, open pronterface, and connect to the printer.
  2. If there is filament sticking out of the top of the extruder, you'll need to remove it.
  3. Set the hotend temperature (175-185 degrees Celsius for PLA)
  4. When extruder is warmed up, raise the extruder (+z axis) so it's not touching the bed.
  5. Click the reverse button while gently pulling upwards on the filament you wish to remove.
  6. Continue gently pulling and pressing reverse until the remaining filament is drawn out from the top of the extruder housing.
  7. Once the filament has been removed, replace the spool.
  8. Feed the new filament into the appropriate hole in the extruder housing.
  9. Gently press down on the filament while clicking "extrude" in pronterface. The extruder should grab the filament as you feed it.
  10. Repeat the previous step until you see the new material being extruded from the tip.
  11. Sometimes it may be necessary to loosen the spring loaded screws on the extruder, and manually unload/load the extruder.

Tips

  • Time estimate in pronterface's bottom bar is wildly inaccurate. The console printout when a gcode file is loaded will be about 75% accurate.
  • Some problems may be ambient temperature related. When the room is 52F (11C), plastic curling, extruder jams, and Z-axis endstop malfunction are more likely. Placing a space heater on medium heat (~750W) at least four feet from the RepRap helps. Usual concerns about space heaters apply, be safe.
  • Always swing fans in during a print. They engage automatically as appropriate.
  • Bare glass bed is best for quality. Paper tape on glass is generally more convenient. Bare polycarbonate provides extremely strong adhesion, too strong above 45C.

Slic3r Settings

Print Settings

Cheap

High speed, low plastic consumption, lightweight part.

Quality

Maximizes quality and accuracy. Used for Prusa Mendel Replication.

Solid

Ultra strong parts.

Precision

75micron layer height, for parts with smaller features.

MountingPlate

Specialized. Print layers directly on PCB heater to level the bed.

FilamentSettings

HacDC

Optimized for bare glass bed, solid parts, and fast printing. Decrease bed temperature to 45C for bare polycarbonate bed. Decreasing extrusion temperature to 167C may improve bridging but requires slowing down print speed, reduces quality, and weakens printout.

Printer Settings

Leave at "HacDC" unless you feel they need debugging.

Advanced

Entire software load used on dedicated laptop available at github. With these files, one can use their own computer to control the reprap.

Credits

digifab Constructed and donated working PrusaMendel Reprap.
juri Consultation on maintenance and multiple emergency repairs.
nully Consultation on maintenance and multiple emergency repairs.
  • Several HacDC members for initial capital.
  • HacDC members for all Project Awesome funds.
  • Others.

Technical Specs

This Prusa is fitted with the following:

  • Melzi - loaded with the latest Marlin firmware (as of 9/1/2012)
  • 12V 30A PSU
  • Makergear 0.35mm for 3mm filament hot end
  • LM8UUs
  • GT2 (2mm) belting and pulleys (5mm bore, 20 tooth)
  • 100K Thermistors (extruder an heated bed)

For FW reference on steps per axis: (80, 80, 2560, 666.67) {X, Y, Z, E}, this is also assuming 1/16th microstepping.

To Do

  • Tune trimpots on motor drivers
  • More Cable Management (Spiral wrap loose wires and ziptie down)
  • Print spare parts.
  • Experiment further with extrusion width settings, particularly perimeter widths.

Known Bugs

  • Model holes will print the wrong size. The proper way to manage this is by keeping about 0.25mm per wall or 0.5mm diameter clearance in CAD models.

Additional Resources