Checking in with my Ender3 pro

obviouslytom

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modi123
So 2 weeks ago I had to exchange out my Ender Pro 3 because it started making a large buzzing sound and would give an error message saying to reset. I went through everything I could to do just that and couldn't get anything to work.
Got the replacement and finally got around to leveling the bed and got that to work after about 15 minutes of tweaking the bed. When running a bed leveling print, the bed would jam because the bottom rail has a flat spot in it and I only found that after I flipped the wheels.

Once I got that hooked back up, plugged it back in and started getting the same buzzing sound and error message asking for a reset. I have no idea what else I can do besides go and exchange it yet again.
 

jmilcher

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Take a picture of the error if you can. I own 16 3D printers and have bought some used. All Creality machines. From an original ender 3 to a cr10s pro, and I’ve never had any major issues. Some minor tweaks here and there. But nothing I could t figure out or solve. It’s probably something that can be fixed. But for it to happen twice is.... very rare for it to be random.
 

Ranulfo

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Quick question for Ender 3 users (looking at the V2 mostly). Is the BL touch auto leveling sensor package Creality sells worth it?
 

jmilcher

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Quick question for Ender 3 users (looking at the V2 mostly). Is the BL touch auto leveling sensor package Creality sells worth it?
Every single of my ender 3 v2’s have bltouch’s installed. It’s cheap enough and very simple. The flash is simple the setup is simple, compared to let’s say, putting them on cr10’s or cr10v2’s. I own around 15 3D printers and the ender 3 v2 is the easiest to setup with a BLT in my opinion.

The printer is fine for most people without the BLT. Upgrade the bed springs, install a dual gear metal extruder, and install Capricorn Bowden tubing before you do the BLT. They will make a bigger difference.

I use the BLT’s because I print often times continuously or close to it for days at a time. So not frequently leveling saves me time. But for your average user, just replacing the bed springs and learning to properly manually level it will be just fine.
 
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modi123

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Upgrade the bed springs, install a dual gear metal extruder, and install Capricorn Bowden tubing before you do the BLT.
I wholey agree with this. Per the earlier part of this thread, I picked up the 'parts' bag from amazon, and have yet to really be hard up for a bltouch or auto bed leveling.. but I am a filthy casual so there's that.
 

jmilcher

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I wholey agree with this. Per the earlier part of this thread, I picked up the 'parts' bag from amazon, and have yet to really be hard up for a bltouch or auto bed leveling.. but I am a filthy casual so there's that.
Nothing wrong with that.

the BLT well any bed leveler makes minute adjustments, but really you still level it 99% of the way. They are nice to save a little time between leveling, or if you’re doing tons of prints. But for a single printer I don’t think you’d really know the difference vs a properly leveled manual bed.
 

modi123

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Ain't that the truth.. on the flip side the 3dprinter and ender3 subreddits are littered, daily, with people who can't seem to install one and do the firmware update. It's sad.
 

jmilcher

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Ain't that the truth.. on the flip side the 3dprinter and ender3 subreddits are littered, daily, with people who can't seem to install one and do the firmware update. It's sad.
It’s a hobby. Consider how many people can’t install ink/toner and a simple driver for a normal printer. Half of those same people have probably considered or tried 3D printing. It is sad tho. This hobby requires tinkering for sure.
 

Fenris_Ulf

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Portal gun for my 10 year old's birthday., finished yesterday. Blue and orange LEDs in the appropriate places.
20210703_234111.jpg
 

Fenris_Ulf

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It's made from this: https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:3579224
Really really good, well thought out design and instructions (the only changes were that I used a clear acrylic tube instead of the hot glue stick, used a Monsoon water reservoir for the main tube, and modified the light switch to be two buttons instead). No problems printing, but it does take about 2 weeks.
 

Bullitt

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I'm a novice with 3d printing, having only owned my Ender for almost 2 weeks.

My issue is that I have a stringing issue, seemingly caused by retraction.

What I've done:
Changed nozzle, installed (several) new nozzles using the video guides from Tomb of 3d Printed Horrors". I'm fairly confident that I don't have a gap from the bowden tube to the nozzle*. The fitting to the hotend were upgraded with the capricorn tube kit, nothing was stuck to the tube when I changed the nozzle last.

I have performed a temperature tower calibration, finding a decent temperature for my filament.

I have performed a retraction tower test and here's where it gets weird.

Using Cura 4.10 loaded the retraction tower test, re-calibrating it since it appears slightly borked (pinned comment on CHEP's video and I tested from 1mm to 6mm. The level which performed the least stringing (almost zero) was 3mm distance, with awful stringing at 1, 2, 4, and 5mm.

Thinking this was a fluke, I then loaded the retraction tower test back up, set my cura profile for 3mm retraction, 45mm retraction speed and ran the retraction tower test WITHOUT the post-processing G-code script. The tower comes out perfect, all 5 levels

Now when I use this profile on a model, it strings all over the place.

Otherwise, the prints are now coming out flawless after fixing my bowden gap, and clogged nozzle from some incredibly frustrating filament (Comgrow PLA bought with the printer).

The current filament is Voxlab PLA+ but I've got a new spool of Hatchbox PLA to play with next (seems as if Hatchbox has the best reviews).

Is my issue fixable with a cura setting, or am I running into issues with filament, or what else can I be on the lookout for?

* boy, was I wrong. that was the issue all along for me. Luke Hatfield Mod did the trick, as well as defaulting to stock Cura profile.
 
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jmilcher

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I'm a novice with 3d printing, having only owned my Ender for almost 2 weeks.

My issue is that I have a stringing issue, seemingly caused by retraction.

What I've done:
Changed nozzle, installed (several) new nozzles using the video guides from Tomb of 3d Printed Horrors". I'm fairly confident that I don't have a gap from the bowden tube to the nozzle. The fitting to the hotend were upgraded with the capricorn tube kit, nothing was stuck to the tube when I changed the nozzle last.

I have performed a temperature tower calibration, finding a decent temperature for my filament.

I have performed a retraction tower test and here's where it gets weird.

Using Cura 4.10 loaded the retraction tower test, re-calibrating it since it appears slightly borked (pinned comment on [CHEP's video](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6LjbCIGCmd0) and I tested from 1mm to 6mm. The level which performed the least stringing (almost zero) was 3mm distance, with awful stringing at 1, 2, 4, and 5mm.

Thinking this was a fluke, I then loaded the retraction tower test back up, set my cura profile for 3mm retraction, 45mm retraction speed and ran the retraction tower test WITHOUT the post-processing G-code script. The tower comes out perfect, all 5 levels

Now when I use this profile on a model, it strings all over the place.

Otherwise, the prints are now coming out flawless after fixing my bowden gap, and clogged nozzle from some incredibly frustrating filament (Comgrow PLA bought with the printer).

The current filament is Voxlab PLA+ but I've got a new spool of Hatchbox PLA to play with next (seems as if Hatchbox has the best reviews).

Is my issue fixable with a cura setting, or am I running into issues with filament, or what else can I be on the lookout for?
Have you done a flow calibration cube? Have you calculated your esteps? Yes even the factory extruded needs to be calculated properly before doing a flow test.

I have many 3D printers, including 4 of the same model. Ender 3 v2’s that were all brand new. And even stock, each of them was different when it came to being calibrated. So exact same parts, and I have between 93-99% flow rate depending on the machine. I originally just assumed it was factory calibrated, well it’s not. All esteps by default are set on 93mm, and of course each extruded motor is just a bit different.
Anyways when I had stringing issues, knew my hotbed was fine, and I use the same brand filament all the time, I knew the temps were fine. It turned out calibrating the flow rate improved the stringing. My prints now have no noticeable stringing. I did slightly adjust the retraction also after flow calibration on each machine.
 

Bullitt

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Have you done a flow calibration cube? Have you calculated your esteps? Yes even the factory extruded needs to be calculated properly before doing a flow test.
Negative. I have not. Dumb question, but I'll ask anyway: Would/Should I calibrate per filament brand ?
 

jmilcher

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Negative. I have not. Dumb question, but I'll ask anyway: Would/Should I calibrate per filament brand ?
Never a dumb question with 3D printing ask away.
I only change temperature later of the bed and hotend depending on the brand.

That said I use only two brands now for simplicity sake. Some months I was selling hundreds of prints, and needed reliable, quality filament that was consistent roll after roll.

I use eSun (or Inland brand, same thing if you have a Microcenter near) PLA+ filament. Not super cheap but it’s always the same. Prints always turn out the same for me with it.

Once the printer is calibrated properly as far as esteps, flow, and retraction, you should only need to maybe change temps depending on the brand filament you choose. Assuming you’re staying with PLA.
 

Bullitt

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Never a dumb question with 3D printing ask away.
I only change temperature later of the bed and hotend depending on the brand.

That said I use only two brands now for simplicity sake. Some months I was selling hundreds of prints, and needed reliable, quality filament that was consistent roll after roll.

I use eSun (or Inland brand, same thing if you have a Microcenter near) PLA+ filament. Not super cheap but it’s always the same. Prints always turn out the same for me with it.

Once the printer is calibrated properly as far as esteps, flow, and retraction, you should only need to maybe change temps depending on the brand filament you choose. Assuming you’re staying with PLA.


So, I would calibrate the E-steps, and input that value into the Ender's control panel. I presume it saves over a power cycle?

I would then run the calibration cube, measure the width of the cube walls, and then adjust my slicer flow rate variable based upon the printer's output -- Change the flow rate based upon the desired wall width versus the observed printed width as a percentage, then re-validate with another print.

Once that is done, do I then run my retraction tower tests to figure out/validate retraction settings? I presume so.

Thanks for the feedback, this has been quite a rollercoaster of an experience; I have a friend who is not technically inclined, dumped his CR-10 out on the table, and is printing without issues, where I seem to have the black sheep of Enders, who can print a block, but anything more complex looks like it came out of the Temple of Doom.
 

jmilcher

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So, I would calibrate the E-steps, and input that value into the Ender's control panel. I presume it saves over a power cycle?

I would then run the calibration cube, measure the width of the cube walls, and then adjust my slicer flow rate variable based upon the printer's output -- Change the flow rate based upon the desired wall width versus the observed printed width as a percentage, then re-validate with another print.

Once that is done, do I then run my retraction tower tests to figure out/validate retraction settings? I presume so.

Thanks for the feedback, this has been quite a rollercoaster of an experience; I have a friend who is not technically inclined, dumped his CR-10 out on the table, and is printing without issues, where I seem to have the black sheep of Enders, who can print a block, but anything more complex looks like it came out of the Temple of Doom.
Yes sir you have the idea, in that order. Calibrate esteps, adjust flow rate, then set out to calibrate retraction.
That should get you 99% of the way there. Load up quality filament, and if everything else is functionally correct on the printer and it is properly leveled, you should eliminate the issues.

My best printer that needed almost no calibration and has been rock solid with nearly perfect prints since day one? My CR10v2, which I added a bltouch to, and run Tiny Machines firmware on. It’s rock solid and the prints are flawless with almost no major adjustments. Idk if it’s luck or what, but that machine is spot on.
 

Bullitt

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Yes sir you have the idea, in that order. Calibrate esteps, adjust flow rate, then set out to calibrate retraction.
That should get you 99% of the way there. Load up quality filament, and if everything else is functionally correct on the printer and it is properly leveled, you should eliminate the issues.
Welp, Today I calibrated my E-steps using Tomb of 3d Printed Horrors guide and I came up with a value that was slightly off. The machine was default to 93, I came up with a 97 value. I saved and validated with another run; it matched up to the 100mm.
I also used the flow rate calibration method described, printing a .8mm walled open cube, and adjusting flow rates using the ratios in configuration as to what was observed. My cube comes to within .01mm checking all four sides. Previously, it was clocking in at .87mm, its now .81mm average 4 sides.
Every bed leveling test shows me proper adhesion and even distribution of the printed surface with no changes from the 5 squares (4 corners, 1 center) in terms of visual appearance; they all look the exact same.

Here's a visual of what's happening:
stringing.jpg



The top orange filament is what I've been using, Voxelab PLA+ and the bottom are Hatchbox PLA. The Voxelab was run @ 205c the Hatchbox was run at 200c. In both cases, the retraction tower test indicates that the 3mm retraction would be ideal (on both filaments). I can print the same retraction tower, minus the post-processing scripts, at 3mm all day and get the tower to the left's result. When I run the little pre-canned Cura "Retract Test" items, they all look like this.

If its a block shape, I'm totally good. Filament support arms, raspberry PI cases, all come out perfect. My little prototype doo-dads for my rifle parts, no problem.

But if I try and print a model with some significant level of detail, these things turn into a stringy mess that requires a significant time with an exacto knife (or perhaps a heat gun). Some of those droops are overhang issues, but a bunch of it, seems like retraction.
WHM-6D torso.jpg


Am I asking too much of a bare-bones entry-level device, or do you think that its a setting or filament issue?
 

jmilcher

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Welp, Today I calibrated my E-steps using Tomb of 3d Printed Horrors guide and I came up with a value that was slightly off. The machine was default to 93, I came up with a 97 value. I saved and validated with another run; it matched up to the 100mm.
I also used the flow rate calibration method described, printing a .8mm walled open cube, and adjusting flow rates using the ratios in configuration as to what was observed. My cube comes to within .01mm checking all four sides. Previously, it was clocking in at .87mm, its now .81mm average 4 sides.
Every bed leveling test shows me proper adhesion and even distribution of the printed surface with no changes from the 5 squares (4 corners, 1 center) in terms of visual appearance; they all look the exact same.

Here's a visual of what's happening:
View attachment 377961


The top orange filament is what I've been using, Voxelab PLA+ and the bottom are Hatchbox PLA. The Voxelab was run @ 205c the Hatchbox was run at 200c. In both cases, the retraction tower test indicates that the 3mm retraction would be ideal (on both filaments). I can print the same retraction tower, minus the post-processing scripts, at 3mm all day and get the tower to the left's result. When I run the little pre-canned Cura "Retract Test" items, they all look like this.

If its a block shape, I'm totally good. Filament support arms, raspberry PI cases, all come out perfect. My little prototype doo-dads for my rifle parts, no problem.

But if I try and print a model with some significant level of detail, these things turn into a stringy mess that requires a significant time with an exacto knife (or perhaps a heat gun). Some of those droops are overhang issues, but a bunch of it, seems like retraction.
View attachment 377962

Am I asking too much of a bare-bones entry-level device, or do you think that its a setting or filament issue?
I’ve seen some ender 3 pros do very nice prints. I don’t own one tho. I sold all mine and moved to mostl Ender 3 v2’s and cr10v2’s.

For sure it looks like retraction to me. What is your retraction speed settings? Also could be a heat setting issue. The power supplies are not always that nice unless they specifically are meanwell brand, which come in Creality’s newer or higher end printers. When a power supply isn’t that good, it will fluctuate the hotend sometimes +\- 20*c or so according to the ultimaker forum threads I was reading. I don’t think underheating is happening. It looks like it’s too hot.

I would say just pick one filament and keep testing with it specifically until you find the issue. You may want to come down a few degrees on the hot end. I’d also increase the retraction speed.

You are using Cura still correct?
 

Bullitt

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I’ve seen some ender 3 pros do very nice prints. I don’t own one tho. I sold all mine and moved to mostl Ender 3 v2’s and cr10v2’s.

This is off an Ender 3 v2. Purchased new @ Amazon. This was chosen based upon the /r/3dprinting, based off of widespread community support and going into it, I knew that this wasn't going to be a turn-key experience.
For sure it looks like retraction to me. What is your retraction speed settings? Also could be a heat setting issue. The power supplies are not always that nice unless they specifically are meanwell brand, which come in Creality’s newer or higher end printers. When a power supply isn’t that good, it will fluctuate the hotend sometimes +\- 20*c or so according to the ultimaker forum threads I was reading. I don’t think underheating is happening. It looks like it’s too hot.

Retraction Distance: 3mm
Retraction speed (both Retract and Prime) is 25mm
Extra Prime amount is 0mm
Retraction minimum travel is 3mm
Maximum retraction count: 10
Minimum extrusion distance window is 6.0mm
Combing mode : "Within Infill"
Max combing distance with no Retract: 30.0mm
Retract before outer Wall is : Checked
Z Hop When Retracted is : Unchecked

My temperature setting is 200c for the white hatchbox PLA. I ran the orange PLA+ @ 205c Both were determined with a temperature tower. The Hatchbox looked good from 190-210c, so I arbitrarily picked 200 "in the middle."

My original problem I had all pointed to a bowden tube gap, presumably caused by improper initial assembly. I had this awful problem with filament underextruding after about 2.4mm height into a print, causing this dreadful "click-click-click-click-click-click-click" sound at the extruder knob. The gear was slipping across the filament, gouging the heck out of it, to the point where it would not feed. Steps taken to "fix" that issue, involved changing to all-metal extruder (Crealty brand), capricorn tube and upgraded couplers, new nozzle.
What finally got my under-extrusion fixed was to thoroughly clean the pre-heated hot-end with spare tubing, and a new nozzle, installed flush, backed off, tube installed, then tightened back up.


I would say just pick one filament and keep testing with it specifically until you find the issue. You may want to come down a few degrees on the hot end. I’d also increase the retraction speed.
I'll try the temperature settings. The orange stuff, was intended for some more "durable" products, the white Hatchbox was purchased by reputation only, as a high-quality premium filament. I wanted to remove some doubt.

You are using Cura still correct?
I am, Cura 4.10.0 with 4 plugins (Calibration Shapes, Custom Supports, Cylindric Custom Support, and OctoPrint Connection) and the default "Crealty Ender-3" printer profile.
 

modi123

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My Ender3 Pro settings I haven't changed in a few years is, and print hatchbox white pla (well, most if not all of the pla I've used and PETG) has been fine. I couldn't tell you what test or what ever I did to get these values as that was a number of years ago.

retraction distance: 6.2
retraction speed: 45
retract before outer wall: on
avoid supports when traveling: on
travel avoid distance: .625
Retraction minimum travel: 1.5
Maximum retraction count: 100
Minimum extrusion distance window: 10
Combing mode : not in skin
Max combing distance with no Retract: 30.0mm
Z Hop When Retracted is : off
 

Bullitt

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My Ender3 Pro settings I haven't changed in a few years is, and print hatchbox white pla (well, most if not all of the pla I've used and PETG) has been fine. I couldn't tell you what test or what ever I did to get these values as that was a number of years ago.

retraction distance: 6.2
retraction speed: 45
retract before outer wall: on
avoid supports when traveling: on
travel avoid distance: .625
Retraction minimum travel: 1.5
Maximum retraction count: 100
Minimum extrusion distance window: 10
Combing mode : not in skin
Max combing distance with no Retract: 30.0mm
Z Hop When Retracted is : off
I'll give that a shot. I need to take a break from mine for a day, and come back with a fresh mindset. I'll try those settings. What temp are you finding that works?
 

modi123

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For hatchbox white pla I use 205 on the first layer, and then 200 the rest. I also use the sainsmart enclosure/yurt/tent thing.
 

mwarps

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I've never run into serious stringing with PLA, but my PETG strings like a motherf***er. Drives me nuts. Turning cooling way down helps some, but I haven't had time to tune retraction. Maybe I should get one of those retraction towers going
 

Bullitt

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For hatchbox white pla I use 205 on the first layer, and then 200 the rest. I also use the sainsmart enclosure/yurt/tent thing.
So, after your last suggestions, I indeed tried them and got similar results. Today, something changed. I was printing an ammo insert for a pelican case when I decided to change the profile to Cura's "Low Quality .28mm" setting, because that took 90+ mins off the print job. A week earlier, I had printed the same thing with my cura profile and had insane stringing inside the holes for the ammo (the STL was not scaled properly, I was guessing at the dimensions). Today, I did that same print, with proper scale (I was only off about 1.5% with my dimension) and it came out flawless. No stringing, no cleanup, ammo dropped right in.

I just ran the retraction test with the default Cura "Low Quality" and got this:


Low-Qual-.28mm.jpg


I can deal with this.

I simply must have borked up the profile I was using when a canned Cura profile can produce, what appears to be, very decent results.
 

Bullitt

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I ended up with an Ender3 max the other week during an Amazon lightning deal. After my rollercoaster experience with my Ender 3 v2, this one has been in "fire and forget" mode for over a week, churning out boardgame tiles. I'm really pleased so far. Hard lessons learned with the first setup were invaluable to make this 2nd one a workhorse.

Most of the stuff isn't as intricate as what you have, but I'm getting some output that is within 0.003" of what the input is. I'm incredibly pleased.
 

drutman

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