3D Printed Droids
Big Printing - Printable Version

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Big Printing - Eebel - 02-12-2019

I have spent the last few weeks learning big printing.  I have used three other smaller-scale printers for the last four years.  I thought I knew how to print stuff.  Well... almost.

So, a few days ago after tuning my Creality CR10S-500, I felt the printer was finally ready to print the experimental R2Dome1print.stl. So, I fired up Simplify3D and used the print profile I had used during my calibration tests.  This was .3mm layer height, 3000mm/min top speed,  default underspeeds for infills and perimeters, and three layers for top and bottom.  Simplify3D estimated about 67 hours of print time and it predicted just over 3Kg of filament.  Initially, the print looked fabulous!  I just had to switch out filament at some point. No problem since I have a filament run-out sensor.  Fast forward 36 hours...

This is when I noticed my print was in trouble.  At this point, nearly a full spool of filament had been printed and the print was getting quite tall.  On each layer the .gcode was putting three top and three bottom solid layers because the dome had curved enough for the slicer to interpret the inside of the dome wall as the bottom and the outside of the dome wall as the top.  The result was a continuous zigzag fill pattern that rattled the whole machine and the table the printer was sitting on.  This violent rattle lasted a couple of minutes on the inside of the print and then again on the outside.  This pattern happened each layer.  As the print grew the oscillations grew in intensity due to the print being taller.  Eventually, the printer vibrations became so bad that my Y-Axis shifted when the belt skipped during the vibrations and the print was ruined.  I tried in vain to realign the Y-Axis manually.  However, the experiment was over.  The print failed.

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So, back to the drawing board.  How could I fix this?  Mechanically, the Z-Axis was too wobbly.  The original owner of the printer had installed a single Z-Axis brace on the left rear of the printer.  It helped.  However, the right side fluttered quite remarkably.  So, I added two front side Z-axis braces. I may add a fourth rear brace. However, my drag chain mod is in the way and it would require additional rework of the mount. I figured I would try it without it and see how things worked (see IF it worked.. heheh).

[Image: attachment.php?aid=1444]

Additionally, I found that the Z-axis was not even square. Ugh.  Once that Z-axis was secured and actually perpendicular to the bed.  I set off to adjust my slicer settings to address the violent infill-induced vibrations.  

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What I did was set up four print regions.  I changed several key aspects of the print as it got taller.
1.  Slow the top speed of the print as the print got taller.  3000, 3000, 2800, 2700 mm/min
2.  For region two, I eliminated tops and bottom infill.  This removed the massive zigzag infill vibrations.
3.  For regions three and four, I reapplied the top and bottom infills, but I lowered the infill underspeed from 80% to 20%.  Additionally, I set the bridging to 150% to accommodate for the lower overall top speed. I did this to hopefully get decent bridging around the top ring of the dome.  Additionally I reduced the bridging flow rate from 100 to 90 percent.  The theory is less plastic, less drooping during the bridge.
4.  For region three, I increased the infill to provide more strength.  Although thinking about it now, I should have added an additional perimeter or two instead 

The resulting predictions showed a 17-hour reduction in print time and 1KG less plastic used!  This is because I was not putting tops and bottoms on what was essentially walls.  Not only did this eliminate the violent rattle for most of the build, it eliminated nearly a kilogram of unnecessary plastic.

Here are the before and after screen shots of the of Zone 2.  Notice the green tight zigzag solid infill that caused the violent vibrations and was not need for the integrity of the model.  The after shot shows the three interior and exterior perimeters and a nice smooth infill.


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So, I tried to include my Simplify3D factory file to this post, However, this website won't let me as the file is 2.4 MB when compressed to a ZIP file.  If you have a CR10S-500 and want this file here is a link.

Simplify3d 1PrintDome FactoryFile

Hope this helps.


RE: Big Printing - phul007 - 02-12-2019

I have printers with 200x200x180 and I am always jealous of the big getting prints in one piece and without the hassles of gluing and trying to get things aligned right. I also see all the issues printing large items and also the time involved with big prints which scares the hell of me.
Congrats on the win and also sharing great work.

This was cut about 20 times to get it on my bed. Now I have to sand all the joins before even thinking of paint.
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RE: Big Printing - Eebel - 02-13-2019

For me learning how to do it is 1/2 of the hobby. Since this was such a tough lesson I felt I needed to share. With enough patience, you can get these printers to work well. Having said that, I am seriously considering the Modix Big 60. http://www.modix3d.com


RE: Big Printing - Prettyfloralbonnet - 02-13-2019

There is a specific setting in Simplify3D I had to disable, something regarding infill, that was also causing some ridiculous vibrations on the 3D printer. I had parts falling off and bed screws loosening because of it. I don't have Simplify3D in front of me but I'll check when I get home (if I remember). I eliminated that vibration by increasing walls but mostly by disabling that particular option. My Prusa mk2 did something similar but of course it has it's own name for that particular feature and I'll have to dig through it later.

RE: Big Printing - MavicPro - 02-15-2019

(02-13-2019, 12:05 AM)Eebel Wrote: For me learning how to do it is 1/2 of the hobby.  Since this was such a tough lesson I felt I needed to share.  With enough patience, you can get these printers to work well.  Having said that, I am seriously considering the Modix Big 60. http://www.modix3d.com


Bet you could print the entire body as one piece on the Modix.

Had to make an inquiry, they informed me the next batch won't be ready for shipment for 5 to 6 weeks.

RE: Big Printing - Eebel - 02-17-2019

Yeah, I got the same info.  I think I am going to order one later today.

Just a quick update.  The dome is done printing.  I had a little layer shift at the end.  So I should have slowed to top print speed down a little more. Overall the print is usable.  I will use a 3D pen to fill in the small gaps in the spokes and then reinforce the bottom of the top ring.  Next up is the body!

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RE: Big Printing - MavicPro - 02-17-2019

If you haven't already, recommend you watch Ecostruder's build log for the Modix Big 60, I was surprised it isn't a corexy format. Either way, I'm starting to think that the CR-10 S5 sliding table is moving too much mass and you're making the right choice.

Note, currently printing your mod for the MKII charge bay (parts 1 and 2 for ring 2) - thank you very much!

RE: Big Printing - Eebel - 02-18-2019

Happy to help. I pulled the trigger today. Big 60 is ordered. now the wait begins.

RE: Big Printing - MavicPro - 02-19-2019

Great choice, please post a review once you have had a chance to dial it in.

RE: Big Printing - Eebel - 02-19-2019

(02-19-2019, 05:19 AM)MavicPro Wrote: Great choice, please post a review once you have had a chance to dial it in.

I will.  I now have the agonizing wait for the shipping.