8 3D printing mistakes to avoid to get a better impression
Most of the traditional manufacturing processes such as machining, molding and assembly are replaced by 3D printing. Manufacturing costs are quite low, so complex models can be designed and manufactured inexpensively with 3D printers. No material loss saves us a lot of money.
However, learning to 3D print can take some time. It is not only necessary to learn how to use CAD and simulation software for 3D printing, but also to operate the 3D printer itself.
The following article discusses eight mistakes that most newbies make when starting to use 3D printing.
1. Incorrect bed level height
The first layer of a 3D print is crucial for the rest of the printing process. If you’ve adjusted the nozzle too far, too close, or if you haven’t leveled it properly, you won’t get fine print. In addition to the loss of material, you can easily waste hours of 3D printing.
In 3D printing machines with manual leveling systems, it is difficult to adjust the bed level. The bed of these machines has four springs at each corner. You need to level the bed yourself by adjusting the springs.
Newbies who are new to 3D printing tend to focus more on the printing process than on setting up the 3D printer. If you don’t want your 3D prints to fail after spending hours processing, you should spend some time upgrading your printer.
Reading your 3D printer manual will help you level your machine bench properly.
2. Incorrect slicer settings
Using the wrong material settings in slicers is the second biggest mistake newbies make. Make sure you cut the file correctly before sending it to your 3D printer. Printing will not be successful if the model is not properly cut with the wrong cutting parameters.
Keep a close eye on the slicer settings if you plan to use more than one material with your 3D printer. While some materials require high temperatures to print, others can print well at low temperatures. Therefore, these parameters are very important.
Check a particular material’s layer temperatures in its manual instead of selecting a random value if you don’t know them.
Getting a good impression from your machine requires a little extra time and effort during the slicing step. Therefore, before sending the G code to your printer, make sure your slicer settings are correct.
3. Entangled filament
When the filament gets tangled, people often blame the manufacturer, which is wrong. Except in rare cases, when the filament is wound on rollers, there is very little chance that it will get tangled. If so, you will be able to see the tangled filament immediately after opening the box.
One end of the filament is inserted into a hole on the spool. Usually people leave the free end hanging in the air and it gets tangled with one of the other layers. Once it comes out of the spool, you may not be able to back it up properly. Even though it looks good, the layers can get tangled.
When you insert the tangled filament into a printer, it may snag, or you may not even notice a snag, but your printer may still be struggling. The spool may get stuck if it becomes tangled too much, or the extruder may pull the entire spool towards it.
In all of the above scenarios, the filament stops extruding, causing your print to fail. When you notice even a slight tangle, roll it down until it reaches the tangled length, then roll it carefully.
4. Do not use the support material
Some models may require supports when printing. Later, you can remove the backing materials from your final printed model.
While there is no need to use any support material, checking the G-code preview in your slicer helps you decide if you need it. Support material can consume additional material, but it can prevent your print from failing.
5. Wrong orientation
Some 3D printing models need to be printed in a different orientation than the actual 3D design. It may be beneficial to print the model upside down if the head of your design is too large compared to the bottom of the model. Printing such a model without changing orientation may result in failure.
Therefore, change the alignment of your printed model according to its design. But, this is something you will learn over time.
6. Unnecessary printer upgrades
If you customize the 3D printer without knowing the essential design elements, your print quality may suffer.
Too many fans can affect the bed level, and too much load on your 3D printer can create vibration and stress that can dramatically reduce the quality of your print. Always keep it simple and upgrade only when necessary. You should avoid making frequent updates.
7. Poor quality of the filament
The fact that some models printed well with one filament but failed with another may have caught your eye earlier. It is crucial to decide what type of filament to use when printing any model.
Do some research and use your expertise when choosing the filament before proceeding with the printing process. Trial and error will be your best friend to avoid this mistake, so don’t be frustrated if your print fails for no apparent reason and try a different material.
8. Do not monitor the printing process
3D printing takes time, and not everyone is patient enough to monitor the process which can take several hours.
Since most prints fail within the first five to ten minutes, you should monitor them for the first few minutes and then check them every 15 minutes to make sure there is no problem.
Monitoring the printing process at regular intervals prevents loss of printing material, prevents serious damage to the printer itself, and saves you time.
Avoid 3D printing errors to get a better impression
Knowing about these printing errors will help you avoid making the same mistakes in the future. If you are just getting started, you may make some or all of these mistakes. Knowing them, however, will help you recognize the problem quickly.
Always seek technical help from an experienced professional if you cannot fix the problem yourself.
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