At the school of Industrial Design at Carleton, I have been asked to help students to prototype mainly with 3D printing. The School bought 4 Type A series pro 3D machine model for students that wanted learn 3D printing Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) process. Since then Type A company as filed for bankruptcy and the site has been shut down. This page is for students that need information about Type A machines. I have collected information that you may find here to complete the workshops given in class.
1. Export your file in OBJ or STL format from your CAD.
2. Preparing your G-code
3D machines need numerical control (NC) programming language to control automated machine tools. Cura is a free software 3D slicing engine for 3D printers. It generates G-code from 3D CAD files (STL or OBJ) to create your G-code.
Installing Cura software for type A machine. Note that you can also install Cura version 15, but you will have to manually add the machine setting before printing. This version is the latest update and will give you more options for slicing your objects.
3. Connecting to the Printers using wifi.
- Power the printer and search for the wifi network with the name of the printer.
- Note for PC users, make sure you install Bonjour.
- Open your browser and type in: http://series1-10419.local:5000. Change the serial number in the link to match your printer.
- Use the control panel to upload your file.
- Name your file as such: Student name_Project Name_version number. This will help us keep track of objects that have been printed and to who it belongs to.
- Write down the log file ALL printed object, successful or not. This will help us track the usage of the printer and the filament. PAY your printed object to JIM, before you can print. The School charges 15 cent a gram for PLA and 25 cent for flexible filaments and the usage of the machine.
4. Heat the nozzle before changing filament.
When you reach 80C (PLA) remove the current filament from the extruder.
5. Level the bed before printing.
- Apply glue before printing. Clean the bed after your printing job for other students.
PLA or Polylactic acid is a thermoplastic polyester. It is commonly derived from renewable resources, such as corn starch, tapioca roots or sugarcane. One of the most attractive things about PLA plastic is that it naturally degrades when exposed to the environment. For example, an item made of PLA plastic in the ocean has a degradation time on the order of six months to two years. Compare this to conventional plastics, which take from 500 to 1,000 years to degrade.
If you have printed with ABS filament, you will find PLA filament to be harder, wear more slowly, and be easier to get a nice flat part with. PLA is less thermally contractive and much easier to print big parts with. The thing to consider is that being stiffer and harder also means that it is more brittle. If the part you’re printing will be used where it might receive a lot of banging or sharp collisions, PLA may not be the best material.
The other important consideration when printing parts with PLA filament is knowing what sorts of temperatures the part will be subjected to. PLA plastic becomes soft at 70°C – 80°C and will deform if used in environments that remain above those temperatures for any prolonged time. You can find more information on MatterHackers.
PLA PRINT SETTING
- Type A Solid Colored PLA temperature range between 200°C – 210°C
- Type A Translucent PLA works best at 190°C.
- Heated print bed recommended when printing on glass, optional, range between 50°C – 70°C.
- Note: Borosilicate Glass w / Max temp of 120°C
Note that these setting will change according to different material brand.
ABS PRINT SETTING
- Temperature range between 230°C – 240°C
- Heated print bed recommended. Set your print bed temperature to approximately 80°C – 100°C. After the first few layers, it’s best to turn down your print bed temperature a bit.
- Glow in the dark ABS use 250°C
- Sticks well to Polyimide/Kapton tape, PET tape, Blue tape.
- Sticks well to extra strong hairspray (Can not use at Carleton University, FYI only).
- Sticks well with “ABS Juice” which is scrap ABS filament dissolved in acetone (Can not use at Carleton University, FYI only).
Profile Settings for type A machine.
name = CopperFill PLA
base_polymer = PLA
layer_height = 0.2
wall_thickness = 1.0
retraction_enable = True
solid_layer_thickness = 0.8
fill_distance = 3
nozzle_size = 0.4
print_speed = 100
print_temperature = 210
print_temperature2 = 0
print_temperature3 = 0
print_temperature4 = 0
print_temperature5 = 0
print_bed_temperature = 70
PRINTING FLEXIBLE FILAMENT
Print settings: Hot end at 230°, printing at 20mm/sec with .2 layer height. Retraction at 50mm/sec with a distance of 2mm.
It increases the Z-height when moving over already printed areas to avoid hitting the surface finish. Nozzle moves upwards when moving over the print and then, moves back down to the current layer.
PRINT QUALITY TROUBLESHOOTING GUIDE
Here is a great reference published by Simplified 3D worth looking for troubleshooting common mistakes.
SETTING MACHINE FOR CURA
- Technology: Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF), 1.75mm, No Restrictions on Source Material.
- Build Volume: 305x305x305 mm (12″x12″x12”), Axial Diagonal: 528.28mm (20.8 in)
- Build Platform: Heated Borosilicate Glass, Max Temp: 120°C
- Layer Resolution Range: 50-300µm
- Maximum Extruder Temp: 300°C
- Feedrates: Extrusion 15-100 mm/s, Travel 30-250 mm/s
Maximum rate is specific to each material.
- Software: Cura Type A, Series 1 Pro Interface (Octoprint-based)
- Other: On-Board HD Camera, Wi-Fi, Ethernet
Hot End – 0.4MM Stainless Steel
The “needle-based” hot end for our G2 extruder is the most affordable and reliable hot end we’ve ever produced, and we think the most reliable hot end ever made. Link to buy new hot end online.
The Fully Assembled G2 Hot End Assembly consists of the following parts:
- Stainless steel needle
- Retaining ring
- Heater block clamp
- Set screw
- Heating element
- Spade terminal with bolt and temperature sensor.