View Full Version : Hardware Share

11-27-2016, 04:23 AM
This discussion is open to everyone who wishes to share the deeper workings of the 3D Systems Cube 3 3rd generation 3D printer.

11-27-2016, 04:29 AM
First share... ever wonder how the extruder nozzle is made?

If you leave 0.92" tubing beyond the nut, it will bottom out as shown.
This is an adjustment I make on a lot of cartridges.
It keeps from forming a large head between the tube and the narrow section of the nozzle that cannot be retracted.
This leads to stripped plastic in the feeding cogs...
Which leads to frustration and another cartridge rebuild.

11-28-2016, 11:18 AM
Insane! Thanks! :D

12-07-2016, 06:25 PM
Quick link to all Cube 3 cartridges at B&H photo...


12-07-2016, 06:33 PM
If only they would sell them to "discontinued" prices as well....lol

12-08-2016, 02:51 AM
Hey! At least someone else is selling them :)

We should keep track of the "On Order" availability list and stock date to keep track of their stock history.
Do we have database capabilities here?

Captured today in a Microsoft XPS format (default Windows printer). Attachment separates ABS from PLA.

12-08-2016, 04:12 AM
we could create a Google sheet for the purpose I guess :?

01-29-2017, 01:25 AM
Hatchbox filament: eBay ~$28 Walmart ~$23 - 1Kg. PLA, Beige; Seller, Low Baller for both. Also Amazon (shop!)

Made in China.
No date code that I could see.
Somewhat brittle.
3D Prints "crackle" when you give them a little squeeze.
Not a very clean wind. Lots of kinks.

When purging, it clicks like crazy but prints fine (used a known good feeder/nozzle setup)
The feeder bites into the material similar to the original.
Feeder works with comparable resistance.

Overall, I can only give it a 3 out of 5 for desired quality.

02-01-2017, 10:51 AM

This is what I have been using and it works great for me in both PLA and ABS. And it's only $15!

02-01-2017, 05:16 PM
We don't have microcenters here. Does it act much the same as the 3D Systems material? The tan stuff really is a lot more brittle. PLA should be PLA right? :)

02-01-2017, 11:10 PM
You should be able to find it on Amazon as well.

I actually like it better than the 3DS filament. It seems like it has a slightly lower melting temp. With the 3DS stuff, it would always peel off around the base (the layers did not fuse together well). I have never had that problem with Inland. It seems to melt more and fuse together much better. But it doesn't seem to melt too much so it doesn't cause other problems. If you look at what I printed in the tubing guide, that was all printed with Inland.

By the way, if I may ask, where is here? :p

02-01-2017, 11:44 PM
Here is Portland, OR. Thanks for the recommendation. I need to get some more "industrial" colors :)

I ordered a 1kg roll of gray PLA coming from Micro Center through Amazon.
Also had an eSun recommendation so I will try their natural material.

Still need to try MG Chemicals too. Next color I guess.

There seems to be a lot of complaints about gold from several suppliers.

Are there certain formulations that should be avoided?
I'm already gun-shy about silver.

02-02-2017, 05:42 AM
Are there certain formulations that should be avoided?

That I couldn't tell you. The only thing I've heard is that the carbon fiber infused PLA is not worth it. I saw tests being done on boat props and the carbon fiber failed miserably. The wood fill was WAY better in strength. I don't see why it would be stronger anyways since it is still being held together with PLA. I would think that the plastic would be where the strength is coming from. I also heard that the carbon fiber fill can damage your print heads because of the abrasive nature of it. I don't know if it's true but I would research it further before purchasing it.

02-02-2017, 05:54 AM
fiber fill is a long time proven concept. The science behind it has to do with -undamaged- fiber of -significant- length. Throwing carbon powder in there does not even assure bonding. Metal powder, fiberglass, and carbon of any kind will abrade the nozzle. Fortunately, our nozzles are well made so they just start getting bigger.

I intend to keep track of sources. Time is money, so reliability is important regardless if they are willing to replace it or not.

Also looking for sales on cube 3 ABS cartridges. Only have one chip right now.

02-02-2017, 10:31 PM
Got the 6"x6"x.040" alumina plate today. Nicely rounded corners to boot.

Packed extremely well and the shipping was insanely fast.

Now to come up with the best way to use it.

I just checked leveling and gapping.
The alumina looks white but next to the plate, it is a very light tan.
The Cube didn't care.

02-04-2017, 04:52 AM
After some thinking, I think the best solution is to glue the magnets directly to the ceramic.
It is plenty stiff to run as-is even at 1mm thick. Probably need to rough up the magnets for stiction.

Next; create a pocket in the stock plate for the alumina plate removing only the plastic and leaving a surround.
The stock print plate will become a backing plate for removing the part from the plate.

Anyone torn up a build plate yet? I would like to know the magnet size.

02-04-2017, 10:26 PM
A Dremel will make quick work of the older cartridge case cover.
The old covers maintain all the little filament deflectors, so this cover will work universally.


02-05-2017, 07:26 PM
Whats the above mod about? Useful for what?


02-05-2017, 10:52 PM
Old cartridges that don't have the window... now it is very easy to access the filament, and the cartridge is easy to take apart.

I did this on a cartridge that doesn't have the spool installed.
I can quickly load a dozen coils of any filament color into the case without dismantling it.
A dozen coils of filament is enough for a ~1hr print.
This lets me change colors easily and quickly.

And if you do decide to make it a full cartridge, just pop the spool in there and route per usual.

Don't forget to use the guide (untangling) tube.

02-07-2017, 07:34 AM
Not your usual Cube 3 side view...


02-07-2017, 09:50 AM
Haha, neat! So you keep "re-spooling" the carts then?

02-07-2017, 05:07 PM
Its an option, yes. The clear PLA was coiled to large, so it would not feed nicely. Small coils feed into the case better manually. For the clear, I had to pull the cover.

I did try to add more material when it was running out but the feeder doesn't cooperate. It crowds both at the entrance of the tube.

02-07-2017, 05:55 PM
I agree that feeding the feeder while in operation didnt work for me either :/

02-07-2017, 11:35 PM
It sure felt good to be able to actually finish the material out of a stock cartridge!

Still trying to make the little nozzle matching tool. Let's see if the 3rd time really is the charm.

I did rebuild a couple more cartridges. And the depth adjustment does work... and 3D Systems depths are all over the map but rarely -actually- bottom out.

I also figured out that you can do the tube mode without any new -stuff-.
I'm running the stock feed tube with the ladder half of the caterpillar track removed.
Pry apart the stock nozzle housing.
Try removing the silver round nut without damaging the original tube. Put filament in the tube to keep it from collapsing.
If the nut doesn't come off, just trim right below the nut and remove the nut.
Drill the hole in the nozzle housing.
Trim and remove half the caterpillar track (the serpentine side) carefully.
Push the tube through the housing hole.
Put filament in the tube to the end (best to do this all the way back to the feed mechanism).
Put the round nut in a variable speed drill (cordless or otherwise)
Holding the tube very tight between your finders, slowly begin spinning the nut onto the tube. Hold the tube firmly no more than 10mm from the nut!
I measure 1" (25.4mm) from the center of the silver round nut to the end of the tubing. If you went to far, clip off the extra amount.
Back off the filament.
Place the spring and nozzle back on the tube and in the nozzle housing.
Hold the spring and nozzle together with the needle nose pliers.
Replace the other half of the nozzle housing.
Ensure the nozzle is spring loaded (can be pushed back into the housing by a small amount.

* you might also want to maximize the tip length as described earlier in a different discussion. When complete, it too will be linked here.

Done :)

The one on the right...

02-08-2017, 09:50 AM
While the tutorial rocks, a few images would have helped even more ;) I got lost after removing the nut lol

02-08-2017, 10:53 AM
I tried to understand the step-by-step as well, and got lost quite early. I'm not confident that I understand all the terms and locations and positions and references. An Instructables type presentation would be a great help!

02-08-2017, 05:26 PM
I know... I'll get there.
But for those adventurous enough, they'll get it in the process of getting there.

You will find I overcompensate for accuracy :)

02-11-2017, 12:06 AM
I see a lot of tutorials that could lead up to this.
Nozzle disassembly
Nozzle re-assembly
Reloading a broken filament
Proper installation of the threaded round nut
Gapping the nozzles
Modifying the nozzle housing for straight tube (Thanks Don!)
Splice option
Taking the cartridge apart
Do's and Don'ts

02-24-2017, 10:17 PM
Does anyone know how to identify the different Teflon tubing?

There is PTFE, PFA, and FEP.

PTFE normally has a little "blue tint".
PFA appears more clear.

FEP is not rated for 250*C. Is FEP less transparent and more white than blue?

I just received some 2x3 from China. It just doesn't feel right.

Any experience with this?

02-27-2017, 05:56 PM
The reply from China was to say this is "...very good PTFE. You can heat to 260*C..."

I think I will hold this over for the feeder tube in the cartridge.

I have some PFA coming from the Fluorostore (http://www.fluorostore.com/)

Stay tubed.

06-15-2017, 05:32 AM
Sorry if i'm wrong room, but anyone know cube3 belt spec? thanks

06-15-2017, 06:15 AM
It is a good room for that. Good question. Typically you just measure the width of the belt and the pitch. That will get you to the right ballpark. Most belt and gear manufacturers will have a series of belts with the same pitch depending on robustness. You can pretty much bet 3DS went for the cheapest.

Normally these belts are littered with markings. It only has a part number somewhere if I recall. These were custom cut to length for 3DS, I'm sure.