Pintrbot Simple Metal Kit Day 6 of nightmares (self induced)

Troubleshooting talk for software

Pintrbot Simple Metal Kit Day 6 of nightmares (self induced)

Postby fpinczuk » 2015-Apr-Tue-14-Apr

Little background, I've build PC's from components, I've integrated EFI on my race car. and I've just build my second qua-copter from scratch using a Wii controller. So I am not completely dum around electronics and anything mechanical. I am not strong in C++ or any other open source language or systems. I am dabbling but not proficient.

Anyway, Day 1) and Day 2 assembly of PrintrBot all metal kit, no major issues, pretty straight forward. My only concerns were the types of connectors used to extend the wiring on the Z axis. Specifically the Thermistor wiring, the male plug is roughly 2 mm too long to fully engage in the female connector. And the proxy sensor wiring (Blue, Brown, Black) does not match the color of the extension with (Red, Yellow and Black).

Day 3) Finish wiring, install drivers and CURA software on WIn7 laptop #1 as recommended by Tom in his part 8 Video https://youtu.be/JPGpEPR6Xxc?list=PLDJMid0lOOYnleZAO6Rb8GrQH5HfhWtAI.

Connected to PrintrBot, moved Y and X axis to home against switches. No issue. Tested Z axis Proxy using a screwdriver, LED flash on top. Heated cartridge to 200c for 2 minutes and tested for correct rotation of the extruder motor. All good so far.

Jogged the X axis down and getting to ready to calibrate. When proxy failed to respond to test (no more flashing when my screwdriver was touching the end). Turn off power, check wiring, all good.
Turn it back on, won't connect to Laptop #1 :twisted: . Checked all connections, re-boot, uninstall drivers and software, re-install. Never got connected again with PrintrBot. The COM3 connection does popup within the System Confg. But that's all.

Day 4) Bench tested the Z axis proxy 6VDC, nothing. Ordered a new one on Amazon for $6, was delivered the following day. Bench tested new unit, it works.

Day 6) install new Z axis proxy, used Laptop #2 with WIN7, installed drivers, CURA software. Connected no problem. Moved and jogged all axis, heated extruder, tested all rotations, no issues. Until I went to home Z axis. The unit moved up vs down. Turn off and checked wiring. Now can not reconnect with Laptop #2. Nothing worked. Tried un-install, re-install all soft and drivers. Nothing.

So now unable to connect with either laptop. Never mind the troubleshooting with the Z axis moving the wrong direction.

Very frustrated :evil: .
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Last edited by fpinczuk on 2015-May-Tue-13-May, edited 1 time in total.
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Pintrbot Simple Metal Kit Day 6 of nightmares (self induced)

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Re: Pintrbot Simple Metal Kit Day 6 of nightmares

Postby frankv » 2015-Apr-Tue-15-Apr

I suspect that the Z-axis moving up instead of down is due to a broken proximity sensor. I believe the Z-axis proximity sensor is 12V, not 6V? Maybe your test at 6V wasn't valid? And you may have blown your replacement if it was a 6V unit? You are supplying your printer with 12V, right?

I haven't used Cura to directly communicate with the printer, so don't know about that. I use Repetier Host & Octoprint, which are both free and have a 'terminal' interface to allow you to talk to the printer directly. You can then see whether the printer is saying anything at power up, responding to commands, and then issue G commands to move the heads, etc, and M commands to check the status of the printer.

First question though... Is the green power LED on the PrintrBoard on? (Apologies for the obviousness of this, but you didn't mention it).

Frank
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Re: Pintrbot Simple Metal Kit Day 6 of nightmares

Postby fpinczuk » 2015-Apr-Tue-19-Apr

Yes, the LED Is green and lite.

The proxy spec from the original unit and new are identical. Operating voltage 6 to 36 VDC. I tried the original with a 9 VDC and 14.5 VDC, no response.

Yes, I am using the original power supply that came with the kit. I'll tried the Repetier Host on Laptop #1, could not connect. Would you know of any How-To on the Octoprint for Win7. I saw the guide for the Raspberry Pi, but I unwilling to spend any more money on the project till I get some sort of progress.

Tks
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Re: Pintrbot Simple Metal Kit Day 6 of nightmares

Postby KDog » 2015-Apr-Tue-20-Apr

Trying to install octoprint without having the printer running well will only result in frustration. Can't really help you on the other stuff. Have you tried contacting PB directly?

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Re: Pintrbot Simple Metal Kit Day 6 of nightmares

Postby teicher » 2015-Apr-Tue-21-Apr

Have you tried a different usb cable to address the connection issue? Is the usb port on the printrboard in good shape (no bent pins, loose bits, etc.)
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Re: Pintrbot Simple Metal Kit Day 6 of nightmares

Postby Mooselake » 2015-Apr-Wed-11-Apr

Open a ticket with Printrbot; they'll replace the probe. They've been problematic, and broken probes have been too common.

From your description I'd consider that the replacement probe may have fried the printrboard. Having the same voltage spec doesn't necessarily mean it's the right probe. You can search the forum for compatible replacements, and see if yours was one of them. Hopefully this isn't the case. Check the USB cable, power supply connections, proper power supply output voltage (sounds like you've got at least one voltmeter...), and that you didn't disturb any of the printrboard connections - i.e. the usual stuff.

If you do get it back to life you can update your startup gcode to remove any reference to probing (G29) or Z homing (use G28 X0 Y0, not just G28, never G28 Z0). Manually position the extruder at Z0 (like setting it on a piece of copier paper on the bed) with the power off. When you power it up it'll assume that wherever it's sitting is the home position. While you'll lose the dubious value of compensating for a print bed that isn't properly adjusted (the process is called leveling, but has nothing to do with a level; it means that the extruder to bed distance is the same throughout the whole X and Y travel range) you can continue testing, and if you manually adjust ("level") your print surface so it's properly positioned you can print just fine with a bit of extra inconvenience until the new probe arrives. Some of the earlier Printrbots didn't have home switches and used manual positioning so it's been done before.

Good Luck!

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Re: Pintrbot Simple Metal Kit Day 6 of nightmares

Postby fpinczuk » 2015-Apr-Wed-11-Apr

Thanks,

I've opened 4 tickets with Printrbot, one reply. Funny enough, the 1st ticket was simply related to the fact that my kit cam with an extra set of bearing carriers for the Z axis. Figure I would let them know. The other 3 is in regards to the issues listed, not a single reply for those.

I checked the board for an output voltage on the Blue and Brown pin (Blue +, Brown -) of the Z probe. 0 volts measured. Now I am wondering if the board is not damaged.
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Re: Pintrbot Simple Metal Kit Day 6 of nightmares

Postby fpinczuk » 2015-Apr-Wed-18-Apr

Thanks Kirt,

The Repetier Host works with PC number 3 (lucky I got lots of PC's). The Z probe is still not functional. But I am following you recommendation. I've set the Z using a piece of paper and powered off. But it still raises the Z axis by 4 mm before it starts to print.

Any suggestions?


Mooselake wrote:Open a ticket with Printrbot; they'll replace the probe. They've been problematic, and broken probes have been too common.

From your description I'd consider that the replacement probe may have fried the printrboard. Having the same voltage spec doesn't necessarily mean it's the right probe. You can search the forum for compatible replacements, and see if yours was one of them. Hopefully this isn't the case. Check the USB cable, power supply connections, proper power supply output voltage (sounds like you've got at least one voltmeter...), and that you didn't disturb any of the printrboard connections - i.e. the usual stuff.

If you do get it back to life you can update your startup gcode to remove any reference to probing (G29) or Z homing (use G28 X0 Y0, not just G28, never G28 Z0). Manually position the extruder at Z0 (like setting it on a piece of copier paper on the bed) with the power off. When you power it up it'll assume that wherever it's sitting is the home position. While you'll lose the dubious value of compensating for a print bed that isn't properly adjusted (the process is called leveling, but has nothing to do with a level; it means that the extruder to bed distance is the same throughout the whole X and Y travel range) you can continue testing, and if you manually adjust ("level") your print surface so it's properly positioned you can print just fine with a bit of extra inconvenience until the new probe arrives. Some of the earlier Printrbots didn't have home switches and used manual positioning so it's been done before.

Good Luck!

Kirk
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Re: Pintrbot Simple Metal Kit Day 6 of nightmares

Postby Mooselake » 2015-Apr-Wed-18-Apr

Check your startup gcode. Since I'm probeless I don't know for sure, but you might need to set the probe offset to zero.

My 3D printing laptop has decided it's had enough (only lasted 8 years, feel like I got taken :) ) or I'd go look at the firmware config in Repetier-Host for something else to check. Perhaps somebody else will comment?

New Lenovo laptop (click PC only) and HP Stream tablet should show up in a few days. One of them ought to be able to run the Printrbot...

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Re: Pintrbot Simple Metal Kit Day 6 of nightmares

Postby teicher » 2015-Apr-Wed-20-Apr

OK, sounds like you have a working computer to control your printer. Thats good!

I believe I read somewhere on either the forums or one of Brooks' tweets that the firmware will raise Z when it can't detect the bed to prevent jamming the hot end into the bed.

You can certainly damage the probe if you wire it up backwards. Do you have a new one on the way or are you waiting for PB support?

The 0V readings on the pins worry me. I take it you have a rev F printrboard....
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Re: Pintrbot Simple Metal Kit Day 6 of nightmares

Postby fpinczuk » 2015-Apr-Wed-21-Apr

That's more than likely the issue, the board. The Z probe (new one I bought myself) works great on the bench scope. The lack of power coming from the board is more than likely the issue. I'll see if I can manipulate the G code to disable the Z axis rising. PB support as been little to none responsive. All I got was acknowledgments that I filed 3 reports.
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Re: Pintrbot Simple Metal Kit Day 6 of nightmares

Postby fpinczuk » 2015-Apr-Fri-01-Apr

I am simply using the unit without the Z probe and G28 X0 Y0. Then setting the Z height manually, it works fine for now. As recommended by the Great Kirk

PR did finally get back with some basic troubleshooting (swap Y stop to Z plug, remove Z, send M119 Command). Nothing happened. So I am still assuming there is something wrong with the board.
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Re: Pintrbot Simple Metal Kit Day 6 of nightmares

Postby Mooselake » 2015-Apr-Fri-17-Apr

fpinczuk wrote:As recommended by the Great Kirk

Thanks! All hail the ... :)

Mostly I just recycle other peoples comments and resolutions; it gives me another excuse to read a lot, and helps fight off Alzheimer's. Nothing great, just enlightened self interest. Besides, after many years of having to do user support it's fun to do it for, well, fun.

Glad to hear you're printing. PB should follow through on that board, their support is usually very good even if it's sometimes slow. They must be busy working on their new support documentation.

Also glad to hear another PBer with a scope; they're almost too cheap these days to not have one, nothing like the thousands of dollars they cost not too many years back. I've got a DS1052E, and even RJ bought one.

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Re: Pintrbot Simple Metal Kit Day 6 of nightmares

Postby fpinczuk » 2015-Apr-Thu-14-Apr

resolved,

My own stubbornness in not willing to read all the details in the instruction manual.

Lesson learned.
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