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Printrbot Talk Forum • View topic - Are tangles on spools common?

Are tangles on spools common?

Talk about materials used in 3D printing

Are tangles on spools common?

Postby bleeps » 2014-May-Mon-11-May

I'm making my way towards the end of my first spool and, while I love the material I bought, there were a number of tangles that seem to be the result of the way it was wound. What I mean is the live end was crossed under several downstream coils of the filament. This resulted in uneven tension going to the extruder, the collapse of several different methods of spool mounting, and one case where it tipped my printer over in the middle of a print (no more printing overnight while I'm asleep!).

So, is this tangling/line crossing just a fact of printing-with-filament life? Or are some brands of filament spooled better than others?
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Are tangles on spools common?

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Re: Are tangles on spools common?

Postby EddB » 2014-May-Mon-13-May

I always roll mine onto a new roll. Not really due to tangling, but due to a sticking problem. Don't know if it is because it is warm when put on the rolls or sitting in the sun while on the delivery vehicle. I've had a couple rolls that the filament on the roll sticks between turns. It is not free to unroll and will yank the spool down if I am not watching. It causes uneven extrusions if it has to yank the stuck part free (if it can).
Now I just use a cordless drill attached to a spool rod/hub and spend a couple minutes making sure it is free to feed.
I have had a couple rolls like you describe as well. It appears that they are spun so tight that the top filament gets pulled into/beneath the spooled filament, causing a tangle since it is deeper in the spool than the filament that was rolled before it..
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Re: Are tangles on spools common?

Postby KDog » 2014-May-Mon-13-May

Some brands are definitely better than others. In my experience with rope, if the line is loose when you spool it then it will develop tangles. What happens is that the top line ends up underneath coils beneath it and gets pinched. The other thing that I've seen that varies with manufacturer is twists in the filament. I've had to stop prints to untwist everything so it would feed correctly. Have also had prints where I would hold the spool in my hands to pull out the pinched coils. Very annoying. The only way to fix seems to be respooling.
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Re: Are tangles on spools common?

Postby RetireeJay » 2014-May-Mon-14-May

Just FYI, I've never had any of those problems with Taulman nylon or T-Glase. As a general rule, though, you DO have to be careful when you first "release" the free end from whatever is constraining it. If the filament wants to unwind itself, several turns will suddenly loosen and you could easily lose track of the free end -- and start out with it having already ducked under another turn, creating a knot.
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Re: Are tangles on spools common?

Postby bleeps » 2014-May-Mon-14-May

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