PLA print temperature test gcode

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PLA print temperature test gcode

Postby Mooselake » 2016-Jan-Fri-18-Jan

Ever wonder what's the best temperature to print at? Want an easy way to test? Perhaps this is it! It's somebody else's idea that I ran across in another forum some time ago. I don't remember the poster, or I'd give them credit.

Attached is the gcode to print a single wall object (the same test slic3r recommends for calibrating extrusion width) with stepped temperatures every 2 mm. It should fit on a Printrbot Play or anything bigger, is printed at what I hope is a conservative speed (40mm/sec), and should work on most 3D printers. Let me know if it doesn't work for you, what the problem is, and I'll try and fix it.

The initial 2 mm are printed at 220, then every 2 mm it moves the head off to the side, waits for the temperature to drop to the next step, then repositions and continues on until reaching 175 degrees from 22 to 24mm. This will leave a little nit at the temperature change point as a clue. Find the area that looks best, measure or count the number of changes, and Bob's your Uncle.

A couple caveats. If you have a probe then edit the first few lines (notepad, Repetier-Host, etc) to add a G29 after the G28 homing. My print cooling fan is currently off because of the whiny fan all metal ubis. It hasn't been a problem here in the wintery north woods, and a desk fan fills in when I need the extra cooling. It prints fine for me, I'll upload pictures momentarily.

If anybody uses it, let me know if that's a good enough temperature range for your PLA (other ranges may come later...), how well it worked on your printer, and if it was of any use.

KIrk
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PLA print temperature test gcode

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Re: PLA print temperature test gcode

Postby Mooselake » 2016-Jan-Fri-18-Jan

Here's a couple views of an example, printed with pain in the keister silver mystery white box PLA (several breaks on the spool, the odd piece-o-crud in the filament, trying to use it up). One view is side-lit, the other backlit. It's dark, so no natural light, but maybe I'll set up the miniphoto booth tomorrow and get better pics, since I'm not real happy with these.

This filament has been working well (except for the jam yesterday...) with a range of temps (I normally use 200 to 210, but should drop that to 185-190, no nits), and in these pictures the changes look pretty subtle. Yes, the temperature really did drop (I watched the graph, and it delayed on each temp change like it should have) every 2mm. The little nits make the changes obvious, and they're pretty easy to measure with a ruler and cheat sheet:

0mm - 230c
2mm - 225c
4mm - 220c
6mm - 215c
8mm - 210c
10mm - 205c
12mm - 200c
14mm - 195c
16mm - 190c
18mm - 185c
20mm - 180c
22mm - 175c

Now to try HH3DP transparent orange.

Kirk
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Re: PLA print temperature test gcode

Postby cacb » 2016-Jan-Sat-08-Jan

Is the gcode good for any printer? I understand the G29 bit, but how about placement/size in X and Y? I have a simple metal w/ heated bed, does the test specify a bed temperature?
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Re: PLA print temperature test gcode

Postby Mooselake » 2016-Jan-Sat-10-Jan

It's should work on any printer that's at least 4x4". On the bigger printer's it'll be in the front left corner, so make sure you apply your glue stick or other adherent in that area.

Download and try it, let me know how it works. Did one in HH3DP orange last night, plan to do a review topic and show it.

60 degree bed, but easy to change or delete with an editor.

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Re: PLA print temperature test gcode

Postby cacb » 2016-Jan-Sat-12-Jan

Mooselake wrote:It's should work on any printer that's at least 4x4". On the bigger printer's it'll be in the front left corner, so make sure you apply your glue stick or other adherent in that area.

Download and try it, let me know how it works. Did one in HH3DP orange last night, plan to do a review topic and show it.

60 degree bed, but easy to change or delete with an editor.

Kirk


I gave it a try, replaced your G28 with this (part of my current routine):

Code: Select all
G28 X0 Y0       ;move X/Y to min endstops
G28 Z0          ;move Z to min endstops
G29             ;Run the auto bed leveling
G92 X132.4 Y20  ;correct the bed origin.  The G29 changes the bed 0,0 point so this corrects it.
G1 Z+10.0       ; Lift hotend 10 mm


For some reason the printer went rather high, I was about to pull the plug when it stopped.

It was unusual to have a print that started without homing before waiting for the bed to heat up. I use the homing as confirmation that the print is actually starting. Also I would recommend to insert a command to switch off the bed at the end, so as to not burn down people's houses.

As for the print it went fine, the biggest surprise was that the differences between the different temperature layers are hard to see, you can see the zones near the seam, but they look more or less the same. On the other side of the part, at the large 180 degree turn, you cannot see the zones. The surface is totally smooth. This is for a no-brand Grey PLA 1.75 bought in Norway.

Sorry for the poor picture quality, the light is totally inadequate during the winter in the land of the midnight Sun.

IMG_0128_temp_test.jpg
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Re: PLA print temperature test gcode

Postby Mooselake » 2016-Jan-Sat-14-Jan

Thanks for tessting! I wonder if it'd be better to try 10 degree steps over a bigger temperature range? Most of my earlier testing was with ABS, where there was more of a difference in the smaller steps.

I like to raise the Z while the extruder's heating up to make it easier to grab the ooze and what it extrudes while priming.

Based on a sample of two it looks like mystery gray filament has a pretty wide temperature range. Transparent orange was a little more noticeable, but still looked OK over a pretty wide range.

While we're not quite far enough north to have midnight sun (about 47N), or the current noontime darkness, we're surrounded by water and spend most of the winter months with a lot of cloud cover. Or, like today, waiting for the forecast foot of snow over the afternoon. So far we're at half of last years snow, but I spent yesterday with one of the non-3D printing toys. Might make a pass while it's snowing (we'll see, they aren't very good at predicting if the snow will hit us or not), and likely will spend most of tomorrow on the tractor. The old Ford's being temperamental, had to disassemble and clean the screen in the gascolator (1930s style gasoline filter) when it filled up with frost crystals (likely condensation from the tank not being filled), to keep the motor from dying under power. Fired up the heated ultrasonic cleaner, nice and clean when it was done.

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Re: PLA print temperature test gcode

Postby cacb » 2016-Jan-Sat-15-Jan

Not sure about the bigger temperature range, 230C seems pretty high already! But maybe 10C steps will make it easier to notice the difference between the temperature zones. I guess the idea is to be an aid to select the best printing temperature. From my result it doesn't seem to matter that much, it is mostly the 1st layer that must be hot enough to establish good adhesion. Btw. I don't use gluestick or anything else, just Kapton tape frequently cleaned with alcohol.

I must admit we don't have true midnight Sun where I live (60N), but it is the Land of The Midnight Sun anyway :-) I have seen it up north though. Those tractor images look much like over here, we have had a batch of snow recently. I have a Raspberry PI camera here, the Images are somewhat blurred because the lens contracts in the cold and you end up with focus beyond infinity. It has a heater to correct for that, but it isn't working at the moment.
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Re: PLA print temperature test gcode

Postby Mooselake » 2016-Jan-Sat-18-Jan

Nice! The clock says it's midnight there, but I don't see any sun :)

No webcam here (well, there is a [img=http://amzn.com/B008KGV2A8]fancy one[/img], but it's never worked right), but we have a weather station.

I've been experimenting with an extrusion volume test from an Ultimaker site, developed by Illuminati (who taught me quite a bit on another forum). It's intended to determine the maximum usable extruder volume; at 200C and HH3D orange it looks a little underextruded at 3 and 4mm^3/sec, and good up to 10. Not sure that it's all that useful other than proving my extruder can handle it. It's intended for an UM2 and is centered for a 250x250 bed. It assumes the bed and extruder are hot, as it doesn't set any temps, probably would take Repetier-Host or Printrun to print. Other than a couple lines at the top of the file nothing there is mine. Attached anyway..

Kirk
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