Thanks Thanks:  4
Likes Likes:  0
Dislikes Dislikes:  0
Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. #1
    3D Printer Noob
    Join Date
    Apr 2018
    Posts
    11
    Post Thanks / Like

    Flexible Filament for the Cube3

    Over the last year, I have been printing Solutech flexible filament on the Cube 3. About 10Kg. I use the ABS setting for the slicer. Oh, yeah, you have to take the filament off the spool and loosly lay it out first. It won't pull it off the spool. Yes, the extruder is hot. That is probably why it flows at all with a 22inch Bowden tube. There are many gaps in the print layers. Many times I have to put a desk fan on the print. If there is too much dwelling on some small feature, I make a few more duplicates on the same print to force time for the previous layer to cool. But I often have to do things like this to constrain the slicer to do what I can not control for all Cube 3 printing. I usually add a waste vertical fin off the print nearest the extruder used, to force the z axis step off the part. There is much stringing too. Blue tape is just right as a build surface and can be reused many days. I did make a read though the posts, but if this already know I can remove it.


    Here is a beach wallet....

    WP_20180505_08_39_35_Pro.jpg
    WP_20180508_05_16_55_Pro.jpg

    - - - - - - - - - -

    A motor driven focus ring gear for DSLR...

    WP_20180511_05_05_01_Pro.jpg
    WP_20180516_23_04_01_Pro.jpg

    - - - - - - - - - -

    Replacement watch band...

    WP_20180716_19_21_37_Pro.jpg
    WP_20180717_13_09_40_Pro.jpg

    - - - - - - - - - -

    A single layer wall thickness snorkel cover...

    WP_20180903_06_13_40_Pro.jpg

    - - - - - - - - - -

    And compatible toy train track...

    WP_20181204_07_17_50_Pro.jpg

  2. Thanks TommyDee, bolsoncerrado thanked for this post
  3. #2
    Super Moderator
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Posts
    1,957
    Post Thanks / Like
    Beautiful! ABS you say I can handle that. Thanks for pushing the envelope!

  4. #3
    3D Printer Noob
    Join Date
    Apr 2018
    Posts
    11
    Post Thanks / Like
    Thanks, I was surprised when it worked. I had alot of fun printing with it too. I do not have the flexible build platform but when the part is flexible, it just pulls off. Nothing to do and you are ready to print again. Very easy to use. If there are vertical surfaces only, it will most likely need a light desk fan. If there are horizontal surfaces, the fan is a must as the extrusion puddles. I guess there is nothing else, lol.

    There are still some missing pieces for me in the "design to print" process. I wish I could easily see what the slicer did on a print, in one step, without printing . I always have to make some test prints to see how it sliced. Every time I get annoyed by this, I go looking for a simulator without success. Maybe someone has that answer. I make parts in gradually increasing wall thicknesses just to learn what dimensions triggers a new vertical layer. For tube structures and monoliths. Then I design to those constraints. I think that is a kluge, lol.
    Last edited by Kame808; 02-20-2019 at 09:25 PM.

  5. #4
    Super Moderator
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Posts
    1,957
    Post Thanks / Like
    Previewing prints is fairly easy. Glad you said something

    First of all, yes, "cooling towers" is something that I've been deploying for some time... for all the wrong reasons, but yes, it works. Basically it removes heat-loading.

    Considering a lot of filaments have slightly different heating requirements, you pretty much hit the jackpot. Thanks for letting us know which you used. That toxic-green is fabulous!

    Designing to the tool is one of the first things engineering school frowns upon... but when you are the shop, you tend to enhance your knowledge and skills. I've done some sleuthing around the print file by bringing it into my CAD system. I learned how to manage wall thicknesses. Basically, the Cubify slicer will push two walls closer together at 0.9mm wall. The slicer is designed to offset (curf) the wall by 0.25mm at 0.5mm spacing. This is proven to be true. When I go to 0.9mm wall, it actually closes up the separation, making a stronger "single wall" which is 2 trace-widths. I also use 1.8mm as a minimum if I need 4 trace-widths. Again, tighter than a 2mm wall would produce. These are pretty much the limit.

    As to how to preview... install v1.87 of CubePro software. I'll double check if 2.02 works also. What keeps CubePro from reading Cube3 files is the image at the end of the file... the preview scroller. I'm not sure if you've seen the threads here on how to rework you print files, but I suspect you would benefit greatly from this. I use these methods to adjust retraction parameter, access the PETG slicer, or do simple temperature changes. Have a look at this thread: http://www.print3dforum.com/showthre...3-File-Editing

    Bottom line, I've gotten as far as inheriting a Cura Spiralized BFB core. Cura even put my headers in. Some obvious tweaks, but in general, pretty straight forward. Cura has a BFB profile which is from the time AXON. This was a very limited command set which has only been tweaked very little throughout the Cubify platforms.

    I know this will already get your mind cooking up a lot of cool stuff so I will let this settle in. Once you got more questions... I have the very same interests in getting these printers to do what they need to do. Thank you for providing this excellent insight on flexible filament!

    BTW, I've been running my universal hub with all its tweaks in place. It lends itself perfectly for quick run filament changes through the stock cartridges. I have a mini-spool on the cartridge, and on thingiverse, that really helps to manage loosely wound coils of filament. I can't see what hub you're running but I will let you know that I've completely switched all my cartridge woes to this new system. Never fray another bowden tube by the grippers in the fittings and never replace fittings... since there aren't any.
    One thing I will note, as I do this with every bowden tube... Check the ID. Typical bicycle spokes are 2mm diameter. If you can pass a spoke through your tube, you are doing well to avoid failure of some specific type of prints. I suspect the flexible filament will benefit even more in this regard. This will explain the process and the purpose: http://www.print3dforum.com/showthre...pricorn+tubing

    - - - - - - - - - -

    Confirmed... CubePro v2.02 app will read a modified cube3 file.
    Export and decode your .cube3 file; notepad, for lack of anything better... and scroll to the bottom where the gibberish starts... find the M107 call, and select to end-of-file - delete - save. (Ctrl+Shift+End after parking the cursor after the "7")
    Encode and use the Open on the right hand side of the ribbon. It will recognize .cube3 files. Couldn't be much simpler.

    Be sure to un-tick the "Show all layers" button in the ribbon. Two ways to query your work

    import_on_202.PNG

    - - - - - - - - - -

    I did come up with another mode to be aware of if you hadn't caught on already... another argument for the cooling tower.
    There is a built-in minimum layer time. This is part of the slicer where the printer slows velocities and feeds to make up for the lack of cooling time.
    Problem is, it isn't very good at it. 1st of all, yes, it is heat-loading, but also never giving it any real airflow. So it just gets -fat- from excess filament. It manifests in smaller ID's than expected if you printed more of the same object. That is one reason I prefer to provide people with the Cube3 file. That way the settings are also managed.
    Last edited by TommyDee; 02-20-2019 at 10:54 PM.

  6. #5
    3D Printer Noob
    Join Date
    Apr 2018
    Posts
    11
    Post Thanks / Like
    Sorry about the delayed response and thanks for the detailed message.


    I tend to work in "hermit" mode and after I am settled on my thinking, come up and look around, checking the back of the book for the answers. I did not know about the cooling towers. Thanks. I think I have been adding multiple copies of a part to the print to get the cooling tower effect. More copies for smaller and smaller cross-sections. This cutaway fin is always the print closest toward the cartridge used and moves the z axis step scar off the print. I did not search but I assume others do it. I routinely add that to prints. You can see it in the beach wallet photo above. That is the thinnest wall. The large roll on the left is only from the slice step. Setting we can not control in cubify. I usually make test structures to probe the slicer. Wedges or steps to check and observe the slicer behavior.


    Yes, I was quite surprised when the flexible filament worked. I had a blast printing with it for six months. It is satisfying to twist the print off when done. The tall single bead thickness prints are interesting how they form. It would seem it should misregister. But you have to lay the filament out to print. There could be 40feet zig zagged across the floor.

    The cubepro software is a good tip, thanks. I have to troubleshoot it. Even if I take a stl file and build it in cubepro for cubepro, the program will crash on loading the build file. I saw the preview a few times and it looks useful. I have to diagnose why it is crashing. After loading it on another pc, it crashes too but it some different situations. There must be some memory or resource issue.

  7. #6
    Super Moderator
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Posts
    1,957
    Post Thanks / Like
    The CubePro platform can be a bit wonky. You might like to know that we can control that little "squat" at the end of the layer. If you reduce the retraction, M227/M228, you can probably dial in the bleed off during that last apparent pause before moving to the next layer.

    The only thing that bothers me with the single (2 trace) walls is that it turns back on itself making for a zipper connection. Otherwise it works well.

    One thing I noticed once I switched to all 3DS ABS salvage is that the Cube3 really does perform with ABS! I get excellent seams and no artifacts whatsoever. I do ge tthat last little squat at the end of the print. I suspect that we can move off the part before it has to go think about "wrapping things up".

    I would never say never on the Cubify slicer. Our friend Bob (Where you been Bob!) has discovered you can de-compile the config files. I suspect that with a little work, we can also recompile them. That means we may have access to the slicer configs! Still haven't done much with it, but I do know the content and the structures.
    The one thing I want to tweak is the retraction settings in PLA.

    I might suggest another trial setup... try slicing with the Ekocycle. Change the material and printer type; remove the image and run. It is 10 degrees cooler... or mod the temps as you go. Something about that slicer is a bit more refined with out Cube mods.

    - - - - - - - - - -

    Oh, CubePro doesn't have the 50mb limit either

    I take it that flexible filament is a sort of loose coil?

  8. Thanks bolsoncerrado thanked for this post
  9. #7
    3D Printer Noob
    Join Date
    Apr 2018
    Posts
    11
    Post Thanks / Like
    your universal hub work...

    It looks good. I will peruse it more today. I am not doing anything too elegant there. I have the 1kg spool on a typical spool holder. The back of the cartridge is left off. As the plastic hub tabs break off over time, I secure the cartridge with spring clamps to the printer when that occurs. One problem that arose after soo much printing, the "cartridge pulled error" would come up. It seems the printing vibrations had worn a pinhole in the id chip pcb pads. Later I designed and printed a clip to wrap around the hub and catch the tabs inside and reduce the vibration between the printer and cartridge. I used to add a polyethene feed tube for the filament into the drive hub but it does not seem necessary and can add unnecessary friction on the retractions. By the way, in all the printing, only one time a bearing failed on the idler. Otherwise the stock drive hub seems to go and go and go. There does not seemed to be any differences in the pla or abs marked drive hubs. I have a few version over the many spent cartridges. Some cast and some all cnc'ed.

    I think I am doing the Bowden tube a little different than others. I had first done the MakerBot thing at the beginning and soon realized their hardware lacked engineering. Then I was gone. The cubes appeared on ebay years later being dumped. I got two and reduced cartridges off bestbuy. Oh my, I was clearing the clogs too often and in an effort to reduce that I replaced their serpentine tube. I just thought their design choice would never work as I also saw cartridge with the thin walled tube pierced by the filament. Rather than drilling from the rear of the nozzle housing, I drill through a thin wall brass tube inserted where the nozzle had been to go vertical. A 2foot length of 2mm music wire is inserted in the ptfe tube with a 8-32 threaded nylon spacer twisted on the ptfe tube as a collet locking it to the music wire. All I did was use a paring knife and a drill to shave the tube down to fit the nozzle. A pushnut locked it in place. I usually use two, back to back now.

    34 WP_20141124_22_31_58_Pro.jpg64 WP_20170220_11_54_23_Pro.jpg

    That nylon threaded spacer forms some good threads in the ptfe tube. Sometimes I heat the tube first to assist with that. But I first added some plumbing with the approved connectors.

    73 WP_20170303_15_57_06_Pro.jpg

    One day I was staring at the retractions and noticed those beautiful ubiquitous cool connectors pulsating. wow. And the friction I had added to the path with the copper was beginning to bother me too. Now I just cut threads in the drive hub for 8-32. The residual threads in the ptfe tube from colleting hold it fine.

    I had always just let the ptfe tube loop out of the hub freely. With the heated bed printing over the last few months, I went and fixed the tubing to the cartridge at the top where it would have been with the original cartridge and never gave it a thought. It looked good. The heated bed allowed me to print across the entire build plate with abs on clean glass. I began to raise the bar for what was acceptable and noticed some artifacts on the build closest to the cartridge. That took a full time day or two to track down tearing everything apart in the process. lol I introduced that problem by securing the Bowden tube at the top of the cartridge and restricting the loop to the nozzle.

    - - - - - - - - - -

    I see the universal hub thread, cool. I like it. Good job.

    - - - - - - - - - -

    l harvest and use all filament from used cartridges. Their filament is good. I agree. Much of the pla will just snap on entry to the drive hub if the machine idles over night. I wanted to put a camera on it to see it happen because it really is mysterious. Their abs prints well. For new filament, I found hatchbox good using the cubify setup. After a few spools the nozzle needs to be clean of something tar like. I find solutech abs to work best with no maintence and a good resemblance to the original cartridge filament.

    WP_20190225_07_01_19_Pro.jpg

    - - - - - - - - - -

    WP_20190225_07_14_17_Pro.jpgWP_20190225_07_14_32_Pro.jpg

    - - - - - - - - - -

    Well, no coil. Oh, I just have the printers sitting on the floor. Probably not a good way or presentable. I pull off 30ft and zig zag it over five-ten feet. yes, I worry it will drag dirt into the extruder. Sometime I clothespin a cloth to it at the cube to wipe it.

    - - - - - - - - - -

    I have to catch up to you folks on using the other sibling printers software. I liked what I saw in the cubepro software you pointed me too. Thanks.

    - - - - - - - - - -

    The complete cartridge.
    The complete cartridge.
    WP_20190225_07_50_57_Pro.jpg

    The small starving on the left from zip tie-ing the tube loosely at the top of the cartridge. A year ago, I would have been pleased with that.
    WP_20190225_07_45_31_Pro.jpg

  10. Thanks bolsoncerrado thanked for this post
  11. #8
    Super Moderator
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Posts
    1,957
    Post Thanks / Like
    Looks like places I've been in about the same time frames Good you found our little niche of hardware hacks.

    First of all, the ID of the stock tubing prior to over-mold is .086" so it is already oversized. Nice to learn this for a fact.
    It is also not 3mm OD as you probably already found out.

    We do have a clip for the broken tangs! https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2931422 V2 is much nicer... just a new symbol.
    I haven't seen artifacts on the close movement to the cartridge. What were you seeing?

    8-32 is a good replacement thread. I'm not sure what those barrel nut threads are.

    I always thought that goo was something 3DS used to assemble cartridges. Then I started seeing it ooze out still.
    So yes, this is something from the material formula. A 3mm drill bit with a hard stop at 20mm along with a pair of loose chucks takes care of that.
    Chuck the large diameter of the nozzle!

    I did a couple of solder solutions but my putting that aside was more the failure rate of the fittings.
    Tapping the mech-housing directly took care of a lot of that but it was messy in the cartridge case... too much modding.

    With regard to the push-nut on the tubing in the hot end... I've used push fittings for 3mm tubing. And as you probably know, push fittings are not qualified for PTFE. When I used push fittings for the 3mm tube, they just squirmed they're way right out of the fitting. Gave up at that point. Looks like you got a better bite with the push nut nut you are using.

    PLA snaps due to micro-fractures. This is when the filament is uncurled to go for a straight length through the track... or makes a tight bend such as at the driver mechanism. It is the same reason some manufacturers don't like you respooling their filament. Now I use respooling as a qualification metric for new suppliers. 3D Solutech, PrintRBot (defunct), and MakeShaper all qualify for respooling. Anyway, those fractures are now stress risers and they take their sweet time, overnight, to progress to failure. I've rehashed filament that I utterly failed a year before to have it run smoothly in the upgraded hubs.

    My goal has been to achieve what the Universal hub does. No more gapping, no more wasted time talking apart nozzles. Easily add filament if you are about to run out in the middle of a print, or change colors at particular elevations. There are simple and somewhat intuitive techniques to accomplish all of this if you can remove the bowden tube "in flight" so to speak. I posted all the pieces required for the quick fitting version on Thingiverse. It really is the easiest conversion.
    The Universal Hub is basically an extension to the Thingiverse solutions without the possibility of a failed fitting in the middle of the print. This was happening all too often.
    I've also received several fittings with questionable aperture size... being well under 2mm on the through hole!

    I hear you on the dust level and the inherent electrostatic nature of plastics. These dust particles will burn out in the nozzle... but it also means that you are generating carbon. Don't know the extent of this causing an issue bit a filament "wipe" would go a long way to ensure no nozzle issues in the long run. The only nozzle I've failed to date had notable carbon poisoning at the aperture bore. I now make sure I don't just swap from ABS/PETG to PLA. I keep them separate... one printer does ABS/PETG and the other does PLA. Sticking with the "no need to gap" allowance

    I do like the single fixed tube solution for all out spool-feedings. Nothing to get in the way and I know it works well. One of my earliest successes was done by adding a feed-tube in a splice. On 1% of the prints, the barrel nuts were a problem, but otherwise, it beat every other solution at the time. And of course, that is when everything was introduced and things went everywhere to replace the stock cartridge case. Well, again... the clip thing is resolved with the replacement cartridge saver.

    What gauge is 2mm music wire?

    Let me know if you want some help with the tubing grooves. It is pretty forgiving. The seat in the mating parts are basically bound by trapping the circlip. The Teflon has no place to go and there is no sphincter response. The depth of the groove is 0.4 to 0.5mm; the leading groove-edge is at 5mm, 1.8-2mm wide groove. Your music wire will make for a nice cutting blade. I use a spare larger Teflon tube in the cartridge to make circlips. Chip-breaker for the circlip-seats is a flat-ground 3/16" drill bit.

    Nice pearing work!
    Last edited by TommyDee; 02-25-2019 at 09:00 PM.

 

 

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •