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Printrbot Talk Forum • View topic - Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

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Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby Sablebadger » 2015-Jan-Tue-17-Jan

I have the new Metal Plus, with Heated Bed and Dual Extruder. This is a major upgrade for me since my previous one was a late 2013 printerbot simple (wooden).

I was able to get a great print with one extruder last night, but I'm having issues with Dual Extrusion.

When I have them turned on in the software (currently using MatterControl because I really like the interface) it has some difficulties.

Whether printing with a single extruder (Number of extruders enabled in software = 2, but printing with 1 extruder) the temps will never work out. Everything starts out just fine heating wise, but once the main extruder (extruder 1) gets close the temp starts jumping around. It will be 209, 209.5, 215, 217, 206... etc just an example.

If I do two extruders (Number of extruders enabled in software = 2, two objects on the each with an extruder assigned to print that) they do the same but only back and forth, and never lining up on 210 for both. It seems like they trade back and forth, its' kind of weird.

I'm totally new to this arena, so I'd appreciate any help in trouble shooting this issue, or things to try.

badger
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Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby evanalmighty » 2015-Jan-Tue-17-Jan

Is the fluctuation in temperature readings instantaneous or gradual? If it's gradual, it could be a power supply and or PID tuning issue. If it's instantaneous, then it could be a thermistor/wiring issue.
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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby Sablebadger » 2015-Jan-Tue-18-Jan

It will gradually rise, then snap to a totally different temp.

then it jumps back and forth between two temps. It feels like the software is trying to report temps for both at the same time.
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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby lwalkera » 2015-Jan-Tue-18-Jan

If you don't heat the bed, does it get better. If so, you'll probably need to run a thicker wire between the mounting holes of the Extrudrboard and the Printrboard. There is an issue if the two boards are using different power supplies or too thin wire to ground that the Printrboard will have its ground rise relative to the Extrudrboard, adding an offset to the temp readings. To fix it you need to create a low-impedance ground connection between the two boards.
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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby Sablebadger » 2015-Jan-Tue-19-Jan

"If you don't heat the bed, does it get better?"

I'll check that tonight, good idea.
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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby keljam7 » 2015-Jan-Tue-19-Jan

I also have a metal plus with the same problem, when i set up a print for two colors the #1 or default extruder will gradually heat up to 200 and then jump from that to 217 to 224.5 to 208 and so on.
It will not get past this point for some reason. And I have checked everything i know to check.
But I am also new to dual extruding :D
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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby RetireeJay » 2015-Jan-Tue-20-Jan

There were some posts a good while ago about dual extruders, where apparently the current drain supplying the heating element shifted the "ground" voltage, causing hops in the reported temperature. I'd have thought that problem was solved, but maybe not.
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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby keljam7 » 2015-Jan-Tue-20-Jan

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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby Sablebadger » 2015-Jan-Wed-13-Jan

Results from last nights test:

Turned on Printrbot
Opened Mattercontrol and connected to printrbot
Turned off heated bed in software.
Pre-heated both extruders to 210
Hit Print on two color traffic cone
--> software says heating bed anyway? Heated successfully.
then it started printing!! (hurray)
Then I noticed that i didn't have the offset for the second color. Fail.

I fixed the offset setting and cleared the build plate.

Restarted the print
heated the bed
Extruders temperatures would never line up on 210 because they jumping around. Eventually canceled the print because it never started.

Turned off the printer, and closed software
Restarted both and connected.
Started Print.
Started printing this time...
Then my second extruder got clogged about halfway through the print. But I did successfully see two colors.

At this point I went to bed.

Still trying to figure out why sometimes it does it, and sometimes it doesn't.
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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby paul314 » 2015-Jan-Thu-17-Jan

I've got a different heating issue -- my heated bed just doesn't seem to heat very well. If I leave it for an hour or so, the surface temp seems to stabilize about 20-30 degrees lower than the thermistor reading -- finally got the test cube to print and stick with a heated bed reported temp of 93C (corresponding to a surface temp of 65C). Looking at the underside it's easy to see why -- the thermistor isn't on the bed, it's just taped to the back side of the heater circuit board.

Has anyone played with this? With this kind of different between reported and real, I don't think I can get up to 100C surface temp (which is what I've used before for ABS on Kapton) without going well beyond the nominal 120C top end of the heater. I was thinking about taking the heater circuit board off and putting in some thermal grease to increase transfer (if it's not already there). Thoughts?

(Also done: enclosed chamber, strip on insulation on the powdercoated part of the bed, which was registering about 40C)
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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby Mooselake » 2015-Jan-Thu-18-Jan

I stuck my thermistor on with JB Weld a long time ago, after somebody here mentioned it, in part because it's (reportedly) a good heat conductor. Seems to work fine, although it would be a bit tough to remove.

Insulation under your bed will help with how fast it heats up. I use a piece of corrugated cardboard (from an old box), and since I've got a bit of a gap made a few Z shaped spacers to hold it in place. Before I got the 29A switcher I also had a square of cardboard I put on the bed while it was heating up.

However, it sounds like you've got a power supply or maybe voltage drop problem. Can you check the voltage both at your supply and at the bed with the bed turned on? I'm don't know how much that big chunk of aluminum heat spreader will add to the heatup time, but it shouldn't take an hour...

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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby keljam7 » 2015-Jan-Thu-20-Jan

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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby paul314 » 2015-Jan-Thu-21-Jan

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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby Mooselake » 2015-Jan-Fri-13-Jan

The voltage sounds fine. Maybe double check the PCB resistance, which I believe is around 1.2 ohms (RJ?) , just to make sure.

Is there a way you can apply pressure under the PCB to make sure it's as tight as you can get it against the aluminum, without warping it? should help, but it has some insulating value and the less the better. Plus it's pretty messy :)

Heat really doesn't rise (unless it's convective currents in a fluid, because hotter fluids are usually lighter and rise); insulation under the bed is important. Lots of different insulations have been reported here, with good effect. I'm cheap (it's expensive to keep a moose) so I use cardboard.

Have you tried using on your extruders? You can do both of them separately using E0 and E1 - don't forget to save the calculated values. It won't help if you're having a ground shift problem (electrical, not california) but otherwise it should stabilize the temperatures.

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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby captainserial » 2015-Jan-Sat-14-Jan

I had this exact same issue, and fought with Printrbot about it for months. They claim this is normal behavior. I fixed it by using a thicker cable to connect the two boards grounds. It kind of pisses me off that they continue to do this with the new model.
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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby evanalmighty » 2015-Jan-Sat-16-Jan

As Steve Jobs would say, you guys are just holding it wrong.
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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby keljam7 » 2015-Jan-Sat-20-Jan

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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby Sablebadger » 2015-Jan-Tue-15-Jan

"How did you fix the problem with the offset for the second color?"

Keljam7, I measured the distance between the two points of the extruders with my digital calipers and input that number for the offset. Worked first try.
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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby horshack » 2015-Feb-Sun-18-Feb

Keljam7,

Did you ever figure out a fix? I have a Plus Metal w/Dual Extruders as well and my second extruder temp jumps all over the place just as you describe.
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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby Sablebadger » 2015-Feb-Sun-19-Feb

There is a thin black wire that connects the two boards. It's too thin. I increased the gauge wire to a 12 swg wire. I am still testing it, but it seems to do the trick.
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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby keljam7 » 2015-Feb-Tue-19-Feb

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Re: Metal Plus - Dual Extruder - Heating issues

Postby horshack » 2015-Feb-Wed-13-Feb

Now I know what I'll be doing when I get home... time to get the hex keys out again.
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