Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

New to 3D printing need help with picking first printer. Monoprice Maker Select Plus?

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    New to 3D printing need help with picking first printer. Monoprice Maker Select Plus?

    Hey hey Everyone,

    I am getting into 3D printing. I will be doing a lot of random projects but I have one project in particular that I have been having printed at Shapeways to sell and just don't want to pay those prices anymore. Plus I want to be able to offer my project to others at a lower cost but my hands have been tied because of the cost to get things printed elsewhere.

    Sooooo... I am just going to buy a printer and do it myself. I know there will be work ahead of me getting everything right so that I get good results on my prints.

    I am just lost in the sea of all the available printers that are out there! For the past 3 weeks I have been digging through Reddit and Google forums and various other places looking at printers. I have design and CAD buddies that all have printers that they have bought for different reasons and what they say all seems to clash with each other as to what is good, what isn't, what I should choose and so on.

    I would be up for doing a kit or REPRAP but for my first one, I want one that is already assemble and ready to rock (for the most part) out of the box. For this reason, I have been looking at an openbox Monoprice Maker Select Plus. I figured at $300 with my print project I would have that money back in (in the form of not paying others to print for me costs) in 5 sold prints. I don't want to drop much more if any other than that right now. I figure, once I get moving with this one, I can then use it to print the parts needed to build a second or go with a kit.

    I am just stuck on, is this the right printer for me? I like it because of bed size and heated plate. I like that the printer head is supported on both sides. I like that it is able to print in a variety of media. I def do not want to be restricted on what I can use for media. I have mock print in PLA and want to try ABS or PETG to see which works best for my main project. I know PLA will work for mostly everything I plan on making but I need something different for this primary project.

    So is that Maker Select Plus a good idea for a first printer? At $299 for the openbox, I think it looks like not a bad deal. Are there any mods that need done to it immediately for safety or to make it more efficient?

    I am open to all thoughts and suggestions!

    Sorry for the long winded intro, but I am so stuck on trying to find a good first printer that I am overwhelmed. Too many to choose from and from what I see a lot or slight variants of one or the other but a variant can mean everything. Just don't want to drop the loot on printer that isn't going to last long or do what I need.

    #2
    Also, looking for a good free software for building my models. I got lucky with my current project being built buy a buddy using Solidworks. I am not going to run out and pay for a copy of that! HAH So what is a good software to use that doesn't have a huge learning curve to get me started?

    Comment


      #3
      Autodesk 360 is free to use, and powerful, for a first printer i bought a ctc i3 pro b, prusa i3 clone, it cost me 140, it worked almost straight from the build, its since been upgraded heavily but still comes in well under 250, it works flawlessly now click print and return a few hours later print finished, very rarely does it fail, mainly due to the human idiot fiddling

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by jjpython View Post
        Autodesk 360 is free to use, and powerful, for a first printer i bought a ctc i3 pro b, prusa i3 clone, it cost me 140, it worked almost straight from the build, its since been upgraded heavily but still comes in well under 250, it works flawlessly now click print and return a few hours later print finished, very rarely does it fail, mainly due to the human idiot fiddling
        Nice! I like that sounds of that. I will check out that printer and software. I didn't realize Autodesk had anything free! HAHA I am used to purchasing their licensing at work and it is FAR from free!

        What all upgrades have you done to your CTC?

        Comment


          #5
          Its now got e3dv6, proximity sensor, lead screw x axis, dual extruder y split (2 in 1 out), new x axis top mounts, mk3 alu heat bed, print cooler, mounted to a solid base for stability, new y carriage, building an enclosure for ABS prints, cable chains for x and y axis, main board enclosure, dual extruders (fully printed)
          I have a cyclops/chimera head to fit when i can be arsed, loads planned just need time now lol

          I now need to learn modeling better, the print side of it i am still learning, its a huge learning curve, but i love a challenge, its so rewarding

          Comment


            #6
            Next step is an inverted delta, (gus simpson) looks awesome but from what ive read a bit of a work in progress, so i had better get learning to code lol, ive had the ctc about 18 months and its been printing non stop and only really had nozzles to swap out when they wear and the uogrades are done when i see a new shiny bit, and no ther reason

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by MidwestExpress
              Hey hey Everyone,

              I am getting into 3D printing. I will be doing a lot of random projects but I have one project in particular that I have been having printed at Shapeways to sell and just don't want to pay those prices anymore. Plus I want to be able to offer my project to others at a lower cost but my hands have been tied because of the cost to get things printed elsewhere.

              Sooooo... I am just going to buy a printer and do it myself. I know there will be work ahead of me getting everything right so that I get good results on my prints.

              I am just lost in the sea of all the available printers that are out there! For the past 3 weeks I have been digging through Reddit and Google forums and various other places looking at printers. I have design and CAD buddies that all have printers that they have bought for different reasons and what they say all seems to clash with each other as to what is good, what isn't, what I should choose and so on.

              I would be up for doing a kit or REPRAP but for my first one, I want one that is already assemble and ready to rock (for the most part) out of the box. For this reason, I have been looking at an openbox Monoprice Maker Select Plus. I figured at $300 with my print project I would have that money back in (in the form of not paying others to print for me costs) in 5 sold prints. I don't want to drop much more if any other than that right now. I figure, once I get moving with this one, I can then use it to print the parts needed to build a second or go with a kit.

              I am just stuck on, is this the right printer for me? I like it because of bed size and heated plate. I like that the printer head is supported on both sides. I like that it is able to print in a variety of media. I def do not want to be restricted on what I can use for media. I have mock print in PLA and want to try ABS or PETG to see which works best for my main project. I know PLA will work for mostly everything I plan on making but I need something different for this primary project.

              So is that Maker Select Plus a good idea for a first printer? At $299 for the openbox, I think it looks like not a bad deal. Are there any mods that need done to it immediately for safety or to make it more efficient?

              I am open to all thoughts and suggestions!

              Sorry for the long winded intro, but I am so stuck on trying to find a good first printer that I am overwhelmed. Too many to choose from and from what I see a lot or slight variants of one or the other but a variant can mean everything. Just don't want to drop the loot on printer that isn't going to last long or do what I need.
              Any printer you choose will have lots of mods to make to it. Some more than others. I have had 4 3D printers. 3 were Monoprice and one Wanhoa. I can reccomend you dont buy from Monoprice. The printers aren't bad but the company is absolutely awful if you need any warranty or parts. They take months to handle anything. The Monoprice Select and Select Plus are clones of the Wanhoa i3 Duplicators. Those will cost you about $50 to $100 more than the Monoprice but are identical and a bit easier to get support. The Plus looks nicer and has all the control circuitry built into the frame. This can also be a disadvantage when you need to do mods. The regular nonplus one works just as well but does separate the control box and frame. Do the MOSFET mods and z axis stabilization and replace the aluminum bed plate to make these great printers. Then you can decide what other mods would help you.

              Another nice well reviewed printer is the Creality CR10 but I dont have one to give you any advise there.

              Any 3D printer is going to require you to do lots of homework on getting settings and bug worked out right. Many beginners are lucky to get 1 good print out of 4 till you figure out what settings work well with your printer and filament. With experience, youll get better and better at churning out better prints. Just understand there is work involved with any 3D printer.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by MidwestExpress
                Hey hey Everyone,

                I am getting into 3D printing. I will be doing a lot of random projects but I have one project in particular that I have been having printed at Shapeways to sell and just don't want to pay those prices anymore. Plus I want to be able to offer my project to others at a lower cost but my hands have been tied because of the cost to get things printed elsewhere.

                Sooooo... I am just going to buy a printer and do it myself. I know there will be work ahead of me getting everything right so that I get good results on my prints.

                I am just lost in the sea of all the available printers that are out there! For the past 3 weeks I have been digging through Reddit and Google forums and various other places looking at printers. I have design and CAD buddies that all have printers that they have bought for different reasons and what they say all seems to clash with each other as to what is good, what isn't, what I should choose and so on.

                I would be up for doing a kit or REPRAP but for my first one, I want one that is already assemble and ready to rock (for the most part) out of the box. For this reason, I have been looking at an openbox Monoprice Maker Select Plus. I figured at $300 with my print project I would have that money back in (in the form of not paying others to print for me costs) in 5 sold prints. I don't want to drop much more if any other than that right now. I figure, once I get moving with this one, I can then use it to print the parts needed to build a second or go with a kit.

                I am just stuck on, is this the right printer for me? I like it because of bed size and heated plate. I like that the printer head is supported on both sides. I like that it is able to print in a variety of media. I def do not want to be restricted on what I can use for media. I have mock print in PLA and want to try ABS or PETG to see which works best for my main project. I know PLA will work for mostly everything I plan on making but I need something different for this primary project.

                So is that Maker Select Plus a good idea for a first printer? At $299 for the openbox, I think it looks like not a bad deal. Are there any mods that need done to it immediately for safety or to make it more efficient?

                I am open to all thoughts and suggestions!

                Sorry for the long winded intro, but I am so stuck on trying to find a good first printer that I am overwhelmed. Too many to choose from and from what I see a lot or slight variants of one or the other but a variant can mean everything. Just don't want to drop the loot on printer that isn't going to last long or do what I need.
                You will also need to replace the hot end with an all metal one if you want to try different materials. Youll need to plan on spending at least a hundred dollars beyond what you pay for the printer for mods and $20 to $40 per spool for filament. It might cost you more than you think to sell prints. To get perfect prints you may find it costs almost what you be able to sell them for in larts and the many hours it takes to print each one.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by MidwestExpress View Post
                  Also, looking for a good free software for building my models. I got lucky with my current project being built buy a buddy using Solidworks. I am not going to run out and pay for a copy of that! HAH So what is a good software to use that doesn't have a huge learning curve to get me started?
                  I've been using Fusion 360 for a few oddball designs. It's free for hobbyists who make less than $100k using the software. If you end up making more than that, I think it's less than $400/yr for a subscription. Another option is Onshape, but you no longer get any private documents with the free account and a paid account may be up to $120/mo. Onshape does feel a lot more like Solidworks than Fusion 360, (I'm more used to working in SW) but due to the price difference I'm leaning more on 360. FreeCAD is another option, but if you're used to Solidworks, it may feel a little clunky.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    XYZprinting da Vinci Mini is the one you should check

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by dongray55 View Post
                      Any printer you choose will have lots of mods to make to it. Some more than others. I have had 4 3D printers. 3 were Monoprice and one Wanhoa. I can reccomend you dont buy from Monoprice. The printers aren't bad but the company is absolutely awful if you need any warranty or parts. They take months to handle anything. The Monoprice Select and Select Plus are clones of the Wanhoa i3 Duplicators. Those will cost you about $50 to $100 more than the Monoprice but are identical and a bit easier to get support. The Plus looks nicer and has all the control circuitry built into the frame. This can also be a disadvantage when you need to do mods. The regular nonplus one works just as well but does separate the control box and frame. Do the MOSFET mods and z axis stabilization and replace the aluminum bed plate to make these great printers. Then you can decide what other mods would help you.

                      Another nice well reviewed printer is the Creality CR10 but I dont have one to give you any advise there.

                      Any 3D printer is going to require you to do lots of homework on getting settings and bug worked out right. Many beginners are lucky to get 1 good print out of 4 till you figure out what settings work well with your printer and filament. With experience, youll get better and better at churning out better prints. Just understand there is work involved with any 3D printer.
                      I keep seeing that CR10 pop up as being really nice. I have also been checking out the A8. Those are nice looking and a lot of people using them but the price range of the kits is WIDE! Worried about cheap power supplies with some of the kits. Don't feel like burning down the house. HAH That is with any electronic though.

                      I see some of those A8's @ $150 and that seems like too much of a "bargain". Then I see them up to $300. I read through them but not seeing big differences. So not sure if it is just markup or using better electronics.

                      I am wanting to spend no more than $400 on the printer and initial upgrades. No worries on media and such. I am more worried about the initial printer and upgrades.

                      When looking at the CR10, I like the size and construction. I just cannot seem to find a unit less than around $500 So it doesn't look like I will find one in my price range for this first printer. :-/

                      Anyone see any deals on a CR10?

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by kanavsingh
                        XYZprinting da Vinci Mini is the one you should check
                        Yeah if you want to be stuck buying filament only from XYZ at 4 times what you normally pay for filament.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by MidwestExpress

                          I keep seeing that CR10 pop up as being really nice. I have also been checking out the A8. Those are nice looking and a lot of people using them but the price range of the kits is WIDE! Worried about cheap power supplies with some of the kits. Don't feel like burning down the house. HAH That is with any electronic though.

                          I see some of those A8's @ $150 and that seems like too much of a "bargain". Then I see them up to $300. I read through them but not seeing big differences. So not sure if it is just markup or using better electronics.

                          I am wanting to spend no more than $400 on the printer and initial upgrades. No worries on media and such. I am more worried about the initial printer and upgrades.

                          When looking at the CR10, I like the size and construction. I just cannot seem to find a unit less than around $500 So it doesn't look like I will find one in my price range for this first printer. :-/

                          Anyone see any deals on a CR10?
                          Dont go with DEALS you see on printers you know to cost a lot more. I can tell you by experience that most of the under $500 CR10s are from companies who will rip you off. Theres a reason why that one out of 20 suppliers is far cheaper. Its usually substitution of parts or no support warranty or otherwise. To be honest your budget is low and all you are going to get in that range is printers that you have to do a lot of work on to make good (of course at extra cost). Kits will save you money but offer little to no warranty and generally have scrimped in parts. If you want a unit thats good out of the box you need to spend a few hundred more than your budget you mentioned. You might want to wait till you can afford a better starting printer. Cheap printers are not fully functuonal in most cases.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by dongray55 View Post

                            Yeah if you want to be stuck buying filament only from XYZ at 4 times what you normally pay for filament.
                            Yeah, I saw that and said PASS.

                            I was looking at https://www.banggood.com/DIY-Crealit...iddle_products

                            From their US warehouse, you can pick one up for $419 and ships at the end of the month.

                            However, reading your last message, what would you suggest then? Getting something out of the box that is higher than my current range. What should I look at? Maybe I just save back for a couple more months and get something then. What do you suggest?

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by MidwestExpress View Post

                              Yeah, I saw that and said PASS.

                              I was looking at https://www.banggood.com/DIY-Crealit...iddle_products

                              From their US warehouse, you can pick one up for $419 and ships at the end of the month.

                              However, reading your last message, what would you suggest then? Getting something out of the box that is higher than my current range. What should I look at? Maybe I just save back for a couple more months and get something then. What do you suggest?
                              The Wanhao Duplicater i3 plus and nonplus are good starters. They are the same thing as Monoprice Maker Select Plus and non-plus. Wanhao is the actual makers of those MP printers. Catch is they are a tad bit over your budget of $400. I know from your past posts the Monoprice printers interested you. There's nothing really wrong with buying from Monoprice at your budget price if you can forgo having a real warranty. Because no real warranty is what you'll get from them. I will tell you my story and I'm sure others can tell you their story with MP. Some have done OK some have had lots of issues.

                              I have owned a Monoprice Select Mini, Maker Select V2.1, and a Maker Select Plus.

                              The mini was the first one I got. I too had a budget ($350) I wanted to stay within. While the mini worked at first, and I got the printer and several filament spools too for that price, it began to get worse and worse after 2 weeks of use. The heat bed would go on and off and it would often just reset in the middle of the job. I also began to notice it's bed size severly restricted what I could print. Build plate sizes do matter. Many parts I wanted to make would not be possible with the mini. I realized I underspent as no other printers at that time fit that price range except the XYZs and I was not about to pay their ridiculous filament prices. (You have to use their filament.) But I wasn't going to fault MP for my lack of knowledge on build plate size so I ordered a Maker Select Plus thinking I would have the parts under warranty soon to properly fix and resell the Mini. This was my biggest mistake with Monoprice assuming they would promptly do right by me. They were so polite they fooled me.

                              So I thought I would solve my problem by getting one of the bigger Monoprice printers and repair and sell the smaller Mini. But Monoprice assured me that if I would do the warranty troubleshooting on the Mini, they would get me the parts to replace. I've been an electronic tech for over 30 years and didn't mind doing the work (I actually kind of like it). I opened up the MP Mini and began troubleshooting. I found without a doubt the worst wiring jobs I had ever seen. Cold solder joints, cables tied tightly that needed room to move, cables being bent back and forth by the movement of the bed till they broke. And super cheap stranded wire scraping on other parts. Well I was able to fix all of it by replacing much of the cabling and splicing others. I told MP about what I found and they said they would get me replacement cables. Weeks later no cables. I called them weekly. Finally I was told by a tech that they would only send a cable when they got another printer in that was damaged and only if they could pull a good cable from that. They expressed they had no parts in stock at all for warranty repairs and would have to cannibalize a new one to get me a part. This tech also told me it could be several months longer before they got me the part. I was angered and was told I could return the printer for a refund and did so.

                              Unfortunately, before I knew about the horrible warranty issues, I had already ordered the Maker Select Plus to replace it. The Plus I got came well packed and no shipping damage. But it clearly had bent Z axis rods. I could actually see the curve it was so bad. It was also clear it could not raise the Z level above an inch or so without jamming. But I liked the all in one kind of design and large build plate. I thought it actually would have been a nice printer but the one I got was too damaged to fix without a complete overhaul. I arranged for an exchange with Monoprice. They of course again said they had to get the bad printer back before sending out another. I was ready to do that. But when I sent the unit back, they immediately replied to me that they had no more in stock and wouldn't for at least 30 days. I had it with Monoprice at this point and just told them to refund me for that one too.

                              It took two months to get my money back after the wrong shipping labels for the wrong printers and numerous other delays happened. I was out about $700 on two printers and had nothing left to go get a replacement. I had to wait those two months before looking again.

                              I got an XYX Jr. (a bit bigger than the mini) from Fry's electronics during this time. It printed OK but the machine required me to buy their filament due to a chip implanted in their reels. I was told I could get around this by spending about a $100 and learning to code these boards to reset the turns count of the reels. But after a month, I spent over 4 times the cost in filament and wasn't paticularly pleased with their choices. I gave this printer to a friend and decided I was going to give up on 3D printing as a hobby.

                              I did not plan on getting another MP printer. Even though I really didn't hate the printers, I developed a hate for the company and it's anti-warranty deceptive ways. I had a friend come to me and tell me that Amazon was selling the Maker Select for $50 cheaper than Monoprice. I had not found any other printers at the price range at that time that fit my budget. After a lot of consternation, I decided to go in with a friend and we each got one of the Maker Selects. It worked right out of the box after 6 screws were installed. And it had Amazon's guarantee for 30 days on it. I figured that was still better than MPs awful warranty deal. As it turned out, I have been using that printer ever since. I have probably spent another $200 modding it to get it to where it is an excellent printer. I've done about 20 mods to it. Maybe 5 of those were crucial for safety and the rest were optional. Most were printed parts but some purchases were also made. I now love my Monoprice Maker Select. But it still eats the occassional print for some unknown and ever changing reason.

                              I've had that printer for a few months when I had a bearing start to make a lot of noise under the bed and tried to do a warranty repair through Monoprice under their year warranty. They said they won't honor any warranty on their products if you don't get the printer from their store. They would not replace the bearing or the printer. (Frankly I wasn't that surprised by now, just had to try.) I paid for a new set of bearings and have not had major problems since.

                              I felt you needed to hear my story because your budget is going to take you down this same path if you are not cautious. This isn't unusual at all in the 3D printer world. Other companies selling cheap kits or printers like Gearbest and Banggood have terrible reputations for dealing with anything other than selling you the product. If you get lucky and get a great complete product, you may never have to experience this problem. But the cheaper the product you get, the more likely there is going to be no support for it and/or no warranty returns. Many of the kits won't let you return them at all if you even opened the box or charge overstock fees of up to 30% to do warranty claims. Talk to the company before ordering and ask questions. If they duck your questions, you should stay away from them. Of course they could be like MP was to me and be polite but not helpful and again you're stuck.

                              You can't buy a Hummer for the cost of a motorcycle. If you do you will find out why as soon as you get it. Likewise $400 will get you a printer that likely will need work no matter who you get it from. I'm not saying a $1500 printer is always better (although it usually is). But the likelyhood of getting a really fantastic printer for under $400 is not likely without you doing work and more expense to get it there. Its good to be enthusiastic about getting into a new hobby. But getting in really cheaply will usually lead to expensive lessons learned.

                              My advise is to do one of two things. Either resign yourself to waiting till you have more money (like over $800 or so) to get a better printer. Buy a $600 one and use the $200 for filament and mods and things you need for it like glue sticks or painters tape or hairspray or glass sheets for the bed. Your choices will be far better then. But I understand if you don't. I hate to wait for toys I want too. As a second choice, buy a printer using your full budget amount but plan on spending more later. If you get one that mostly works out of the box, you might be willing to live with some minor quality issues or specialty filaments that require more expensive mods till you can afford them. I will never tell you one brand and type guaranteed to work well. The truth is, they all have issues. Some more than others. I too am considering the purchase of a Creality CR-10 printer to use as a second one. But I'm going to wait till I can afford in the $600 range and am not considering the cheaper ones out there. If you have YouTube or forums you can get some info on printers. Mainly what you will note is whats wrong with them. Opinions on their greatness varies greatly on who you ask when. But watch for info on printers that seem to have problems over and over so you know what you are getting into. Spend at least 2 months researching possible buys and the companies offering them. Deals that last a short time are seldom worth your time. Of course there's a third choice too. Jump in with both feet and buy what YOU like. But be prepared to study and learn how every part of it works. You can then be your own repair tech. While that's the most expensive way to go, you'll find yourself learning a lot fast and will soon be able to even help friends get started.

                              Sorry to all who had to read through all this but I felt new users deserved to know the pitfalls involved with jumping into 3D printing on a low budget. Too many people get encouraged to jump in and find they are overwhelmed with things they weren't prepared for handling and out a good deal of money too. I love 3d printing 90% of the time. But it took me several months to get proficient enough to know where I screwed up in the beginning. I just think this hobby is better off getting new people prepared to understand what could be ahead instead of getting them to throw their cash into the ring and get it taken. 3D printing is a skill and in some ways almost an artform and it requires a lot of dedication and knowledge to get good at it. Low budgets add even more pitfalls to the after purchase satisfaction level.
                              Last edited by dongray55; 08-07-2017, 09:28 PM.

                              Comment


                                #16
                                Originally posted by dongray55 View Post
                                <SNIP>
                                My advise is to do one of two things. Either resign yourself to waiting till you have more money (like over $800 or so) to get a better printer.
                                Thanks for your post. I'm looking to upgrade from my first printer. I picked up a DaVinci 1.0 floor model for $100 or so and have gotten a few years from it with hacked firmware and a lot of fuss. It's okay for a rough print job if I want to spend 8 hours nursing the printer through jams and resets, but demands necessitate I have a printer that with reasonable care can make a quality demo print. Is there a good option in the $800-$1000 intro range that gives me a solid base for upgrades to best facilitate my needs?

                                EDIT: I print models of engineering designs for rapid prototyping/R&D. I have plenty of shop space.
                                Last edited by Orestes; 08-08-2017, 11:39 PM.

                                Comment


                                  #17
                                  Originally posted by dongray55 View Post

                                  The Wanhao Duplicater i3 plus and nonplus are good starters. They are the same thing as Monoprice Maker Select Plus and non-plus. Wanhao is the actual makers of those MP printers. Catch is they are a tad bit over your budget of $400. I know from your past posts the Monoprice printers interested you. There's nothing really wrong with buying from Monoprice at your budget price if you can forgo having a real warranty. Because no real warranty is what you'll get from them. I will tell you my story and I'm sure others can tell you their story with MP. Some have done OK some have had lots of issues.

                                  I have owned a Monoprice Select Mini, Maker Select V2.1, and a Maker Select Plus.

                                  The mini was the first one I got. I too had a budget ($350) I wanted to stay within. While the mini worked at first, and I got the printer and several filament spools too for that price, it began to get worse and worse after 2 weeks of use. The heat bed would go on and off and it would often just reset in the middle of the job. I also began to notice it's bed size severly restricted what I could print. Build plate sizes do matter. Many parts I wanted to make would not be possible with the mini. I realized I underspent as no other printers at that time fit that price range except the XYZs and I was not about to pay their ridiculous filament prices. (You have to use their filament.) But I wasn't going to fault MP for my lack of knowledge on build plate size so I ordered a Maker Select Plus thinking I would have the parts under warranty soon to properly fix and resell the Mini. This was my biggest mistake with Monoprice assuming they would promptly do right by me. They were so polite they fooled me.

                                  So I thought I would solve my problem by getting one of the bigger Monoprice printers and repair and sell the smaller Mini. But Monoprice assured me that if I would do the warranty troubleshooting on the Mini, they would get me the parts to replace. I've been an electronic tech for over 30 years and didn't mind doing the work (I actually kind of like it). I opened up the MP Mini and began troubleshooting. I found without a doubt the worst wiring jobs I had ever seen. Cold solder joints, cables tied tightly that needed room to move, cables being bent back and forth by the movement of the bed till they broke. And super cheap stranded wire scraping on other parts. Well I was able to fix all of it by replacing much of the cabling and splicing others. I told MP about what I found and they said they would get me replacement cables. Weeks later no cables. I called them weekly. Finally I was told by a tech that they would only send a cable when they got another printer in that was damaged and only if they could pull a good cable from that. They expressed they had no parts in stock at all for warranty repairs and would have to cannibalize a new one to get me a part. This tech also told me it could be several months longer before they got me the part. I was angered and was told I could return the printer for a refund and did so.

                                  Unfortunately, before I knew about the horrible warranty issues, I had already ordered the Maker Select Plus to replace it. The Plus I got came well packed and no shipping damage. But it clearly had bent Z axis rods. I could actually see the curve it was so bad. It was also clear it could not raise the Z level above an inch or so without jamming. But I liked the all in one kind of design and large build plate. I thought it actually would have been a nice printer but the one I got was too damaged to fix without a complete overhaul. I arranged for an exchange with Monoprice. They of course again said they had to get the bad printer back before sending out another. I was ready to do that. But when I sent the unit back, they immediately replied to me that they had no more in stock and wouldn't for at least 30 days. I had it with Monoprice at this point and just told them to refund me for that one too.

                                  It took two months to get my money back after the wrong shipping labels for the wrong printers and numerous other delays happened. I was out about $700 on two printers and had nothing left to go get a replacement. I had to wait those two months before looking again.

                                  I got an XYX Jr. (a bit bigger than the mini) from Fry's electronics during this time. It printed OK but the machine required me to buy their filament due to a chip implanted in their reels. I was told I could get around this by spending about a $100 and learning to code these boards to reset the turns count of the reels. But after a month, I spent over 4 times the cost in filament and wasn't paticularly pleased with their choices. I gave this printer to a friend and decided I was going to give up on 3D printing as a hobby.

                                  I did not plan on getting another MP printer. Even though I really didn't hate the printers, I developed a hate for the company and it's anti-warranty deceptive ways. I had a friend come to me and tell me that Amazon was selling the Maker Select for $50 cheaper than Monoprice. I had not found any other printers at the price range at that time that fit my budget. After a lot of consternation, I decided to go in with a friend and we each got one of the Maker Selects. It worked right out of the box after 6 screws were installed. And it had Amazon's guarantee for 30 days on it. I figured that was still better than MPs awful warranty deal. As it turned out, I have been using that printer ever since. I have probably spent another $200 modding it to get it to where it is an excellent printer. I've done about 20 mods to it. Maybe 5 of those were crucial for safety and the rest were optional. Most were printed parts but some purchases were also made. I now love my Monoprice Maker Select. But it still eats the occassional print for some unknown and ever changing reason.

                                  I've had that printer for a few months when I had a bearing start to make a lot of noise under the bed and tried to do a warranty repair through Monoprice under their year warranty. They said they won't honor any warranty on their products if you don't get the printer from their store. They would not replace the bearing or the printer. (Frankly I wasn't that surprised by now, just had to try.) I paid for a new set of bearings and have not had major problems since.

                                  I felt you needed to hear my story because your budget is going to take you down this same path if you are not cautious. This isn't unusual at all in the 3D printer world. Other companies selling cheap kits or printers like Gearbest and Banggood have terrible reputations for dealing with anything other than selling you the product. If you get lucky and get a great complete product, you may never have to experience this problem. But the cheaper the product you get, the more likely there is going to be no support for it and/or no warranty returns. Many of the kits won't let you return them at all if you even opened the box or charge overstock fees of up to 30% to do warranty claims. Talk to the company before ordering and ask questions. If they duck your questions, you should stay away from them. Of course they could be like MP was to me and be polite but not helpful and again you're stuck.

                                  You can't buy a Hummer for the cost of a motorcycle. If you do you will find out why as soon as you get it. Likewise $400 will get you a printer that likely will need work no matter who you get it from. I'm not saying a $1500 printer is always better (although it usually is). But the likelyhood of getting a really fantastic printer for under $400 is not likely without you doing work and more expense to get it there. Its good to be enthusiastic about getting into a new hobby. But getting in really cheaply will usually lead to expensive lessons learned.

                                  My advise is to do one of two things. Either resign yourself to waiting till you have more money (like over $800 or so) to get a better printer. Buy a $600 one and use the $200 for filament and mods and things you need for it like glue sticks or painters tape or hairspray or glass sheets for the bed. Your choices will be far better then. But I understand if you don't. I hate to wait for toys I want too. As a second choice, buy a printer using your full budget amount but plan on spending more later. If you get one that mostly works out of the box, you might be willing to live with some minor quality issues or specialty filaments that require more expensive mods till you can afford them. I will never tell you one brand and type guaranteed to work well. The truth is, they all have issues. Some more than others. I too am considering the purchase of a Creality CR-10 printer to use as a second one. But I'm going to wait till I can afford in the $600 range and am not considering the cheaper ones out there. If you have YouTube or forums you can get some info on printers. Mainly what you will note is whats wrong with them. Opinions on their greatness varies greatly on who you ask when. But watch for info on printers that seem to have problems over and over so you know what you are getting into. Spend at least 2 months researching possible buys and the companies offering them. Deals that last a short time are seldom worth your time. Of course there's a third choice too. Jump in with both feet and buy what YOU like. But be prepared to study and learn how every part of it works. You can then be your own repair tech. While that's the most expensive way to go, you'll find yourself learning a lot fast and will soon be able to even help friends get started.

                                  Sorry to all who had to read through all this but I felt new users deserved to know the pitfalls involved with jumping into 3D printing on a low budget. Too many people get encouraged to jump in and find they are overwhelmed with things they weren't prepared for handling and out a good deal of money too. I love 3d printing 90% of the time. But it took me several months to get proficient enough to know where I screwed up in the beginning. I just think this hobby is better off getting new people prepared to understand what could be ahead instead of getting them to throw their cash into the ring and get it taken. 3D printing is a skill and in some ways almost an artform and it requires a lot of dedication and knowledge to get good at it. Low budgets add even more pitfalls to the after purchase satisfaction level.
                                  Very good read! I like see informatoin such as that coming from folks. It give justification as to why they say what they say. Not just a, "Hey do this or buy this just because." I have looked in the past at refurbed Makerbots in the $1000-$1200 region before when they have had them on Amazon. That was one of the first ones I looked at. That CR-10 that I am looking at is the $500 version and they have a coupon code to snag it up for $409 shipped right now. I have seen a lot of folk pull nice prints off but I know there is a nuance to the settings to get those prints and that is where the "artform" comes in. You learn the printer and what it does, can do, and how it needs programmed to get those beautiful prints.

                                  I just didn't want to go deep in the pocket up front. I understand the reason why, but I don't want to get that deep in cash and also, don't want my wife to kill me on my first printer! HAHA

                                  So you have the MP Select and you have modded it and got it printing nice. What all did you do to it? Why did you choose the Select after all the other MP issues? I am still feeling the CR-10 but just because I can make it grow with me. However, I see what you say and mean and wonder, what is a printer that I should save for? If you had to recommend either a printer out of the box and go or a printer that take a bit of modding. What are your recommendations?

                                  Comment


                                    #18
                                    Originally posted by MidwestExpress

                                    Very good read! I like see informatoin such as that coming from folks. It give justification as to why they say what they say. Not just a, "Hey do this or buy this just because." I have looked in the past at refurbed Makerbots in the $1000-$1200 region before when they have had them on Amazon. That was one of the first ones I looked at. That CR-10 that I am looking at is the $500 version and they have a coupon code to snag it up for $409 shipped right now. I have seen a lot of folk pull nice prints off but I know there is a nuance to the settings to get those prints and that is where the "artform" comes in. You learn the printer and what it does, can do, and how it needs programmed to get those beautiful prints.

                                    I just didn't want to go deep in the pocket up front. I understand the reason why, but I don't want to get that deep in cash and also, don't want my wife to kill me on my first printer! HAHA

                                    So you have the MP Select and you have modded it and got it printing nice. What all did you do to it? Why did you choose the Select after all the other MP issues? I am still feeling the CR-10 but just because I can make it grow with me. However, I see what you say and mean and wonder, what is a printer that I should save for? If you had to recommend either a printer out of the box and go or a printer that take a bit of modding. What are your recommendations?
                                    To be honest, I am still researching the CR10 But to me looks promising. I forgot to mention that I also had a Wanhao Duplicater i3 for awhile. I had it for a few months to get the kinks out of it. It was an old one and many of its parts were heavily worn. I just figured I could mod and upgrade the nearly identical new V2.1 Monoprice than I could buy a lot of new parts to fix the Wanhao. Its just like the Maker Select except in small ways. What I love about these printers is the open architecture allows easy mods. Theres a good deal of space to add things. While I would prefer a near perfect printer out of the box, I know my budget doesnt allow that. I spent about 30 years of doing electronics and robotics and am capable of doing most mods. My failures tend to be that Im terrible at designing new parts. So I use Thingiverse 1st for mods before designing my own. Another advantage to the Maker Select is it has massive amounts of stuff already designed for it. And if you buy new youll likely get version 2.1 which has already solved some of the problems it originally came with. I have done 21 mods to it to date. If you get one I highly recommend you do a z axis brace mod, buy a MOSFET board and get the high amps of the heat bed off the motherboard and onto the MOSFET. If you plan to do any materials other than PLA, you will likely want to replace the brass and PTFE plastic hot end with an all metal hot end for higher temps. Also the Maker Select isnt really 180mm height available as it comes. If you raise the about 165mm, it will scrape on stuff in the top and tear itself up. I printed 2 blocks of plastic that easily extended the top up to where it is should have been. Theres all kinds of little mods you can do too that are just printing some parts. What I would suggest is once youve decided and git your printer, look at the hardware used. Go to Amazon or your local hardware store and buy kits of screws and nuts in the lengths you have and longer. Also get yourself a few things like painters tape, glue sticks, hairspray and scrapers and exacto knives. Parts seldom come out perfect and having a few goid hand tools will help make them better.

                                    And lastly...Search, subscribe and watch the experts stuff on YouTube. Its free learning that can immensly help you. Some great examples are the 3D printing professor, 3D printing nerd, makers muse, and many others you can learn from. While they may use different printers than yours, they can help you understand concepts and sometimes do great reviews on printers. Dont ever rely on the manufacturers for info. Theyre often way behind the knowledge of the users in terms of how to handle shortcomings and such. As I said before, I love 3D printing 90% of the time. During the other 10%, I want to throw it out the window (after a 24 hour long print fails 30 minutes before completing for example). I wont recommend any printer other than the one I use. I just think that wouldnt be factual info. So hence, Im just tellong you about my experience. Youre going to have to do a lot of research or have a few mistakes to learn from. And yes wives tend to emphasize just how stupid your last purchase was especially when you had to get her reserved OK to start with. For your 1st purchases, start by doing PLA filament. If you can get at least 3 rolls it will get you started. Dont buy clears or color changing or stuff that are specialty filaments. Also know that one companys PLA will print completely different from another on your machine. So stick with one brand and type of filaments to learn settings.
                                    Print the experts calibration and torture prints to see where your settings or prints need improving. Above all...give yourself time to learn. Its not unusual to only get 1 out of 4 good completed prints in the beginning. So print small things at 1st to avoid failures that waste days of print time. And learn to have a thick skin around others who will make your failures seem monumental and your successes minor. Many people will think what you are doing is a silly waste of time and money until you get good at it. Then youll find those same people wanting you to do prints for them. Dont leave 3D printers running for many hours unattended. They are producing extremely hot temps that can produce fires if improperly managed. Use some common sense. These are not gifts for young kids. They will get burnt if not careful. Include your kids but supervise them at all times wuth 3D printers. Nuff said.

                                    Comment


                                      #19
                                      Originally posted by dongray55 View Post
                                      To be honest, I am still researching the CR10 But to me looks promising. I forgot to mention that I also had a Wanhao Duplicater i3 for awhile. I had it for a few months to get the kinks out of it. It was an old one and many of its parts were heavily worn. I just figured I could mod and upgrade the nearly identical new V2.1 Monoprice than I could buy a lot of new parts to fix the Wanhao. Its just like the Maker Select except in small ways. What I love about these printers is the open architecture allows easy mods. Theres a good deal of space to add things. While I would prefer a near perfect printer out of the box, I know my budget doesnt allow that. I spent about 30 years of doing electronics and robotics and am capable of doing most mods. My failures tend to be that Im terrible at designing new parts. So I use Thingiverse 1st for mods before designing my own. Another advantage to the Maker Select is it has massive amounts of stuff already designed for it. And if you buy new youll likely get version 2.1 which has already solved some of the problems it originally came with. I have done 21 mods to it to date. If you get one I highly recommend you do a z axis brace mod, buy a MOSFET board and get the high amps of the heat bed off the motherboard and onto the MOSFET. If you plan to do any materials other than PLA, you will likely want to replace the brass and PTFE plastic hot end with an all metal hot end for higher temps. Also the Maker Select isnt really 180mm height available as it comes. If you raise the about 165mm, it will scrape on stuff in the top and tear itself up. I printed 2 blocks of plastic that easily extended the top up to where it is should have been. Theres all kinds of little mods you can do too that are just printing some parts. What I would suggest is once youve decided and git your printer, look at the hardware used. Go to Amazon or your local hardware store and buy kits of screws and nuts in the lengths you have and longer. Also get yourself a few things like painters tape, glue sticks, hairspray and scrapers and exacto knives. Parts seldom come out perfect and having a few goid hand tools will help make them better.

                                      And lastly...Search, subscribe and watch the experts stuff on YouTube. Its free learning that can immensly help you. Some great examples are the 3D printing professor, 3D printing nerd, makers muse, and many others you can learn from. While they may use different printers than yours, they can help you understand concepts and sometimes do great reviews on printers. Dont ever rely on the manufacturers for info. Theyre often way behind the knowledge of the users in terms of how to handle shortcomings and such. As I said before, I love 3D printing 90% of the time. During the other 10%, I want to throw it out the window (after a 24 hour long print fails 30 minutes before completing for example). I wont recommend any printer other than the one I use. I just think that wouldnt be factual info. So hence, Im just tellong you about my experience. Youre going to have to do a lot of research or have a few mistakes to learn from. And yes wives tend to emphasize just how stupid your last purchase was especially when you had to get her reserved OK to start with. For your 1st purchases, start by doing PLA filament. If you can get at least 3 rolls it will get you started. Dont buy clears or color changing or stuff that are specialty filaments. Also know that one companys PLA will print completely different from another on your machine. So stick with one brand and type of filaments to learn settings.
                                      Print the experts calibration and torture prints to see where your settings or prints need improving. Above all...give yourself time to learn. Its not unusual to only get 1 out of 4 good completed prints in the beginning. So print small things at 1st to avoid failures that waste days of print time. And learn to have a thick skin around others who will make your failures seem monumental and your successes minor. Many people will think what you are doing is a silly waste of time and money until you get good at it. Then youll find those same people wanting you to do prints for them. Dont leave 3D printers running for many hours unattended. They are producing extremely hot temps that can produce fires if improperly managed. Use some common sense. These are not gifts for young kids. They will get burnt if not careful. Include your kids but supervise them at all times wuth 3D printers. Nuff said.

                                      Sounds good! My primary reason for getting printer is to not only have fun with printing things and exploring creativity with cad and what not, but I have a project going. I have been getting it printed at Shapeways and it is a two piece print. I have a lot of people wanting to purchase this project from me and I just don't want to pay the overhead of Shapeways. Now I know initially I will be eating it in the pants learning the printer and filament. However, I think about it as learning something new and getting new toy that I can use for many uses and other fun projects. That and I and I am getting tired of the cost and wait time of prototyping and cost of their filaments if you don't just use PLA. My project has a couple spots where the walls are only a couple mm thick and I need to design and print some braces. I just wish I could do stuff like that at home. Also, I want to play with filaments eventually like Petg, PLA plus, and ABS for the project to see what works best. The PLA has warped substantially already on my initial prototype and it is only a couple months old. I am hoping that the using some of the other filaments (ones that don't warp as easy due to atmospheric moisture and stronger) will give me the ability to print this initial project and make me feel better that I am putting out a stronger more sturdy product.

                                      I was also looking at the actual Prusa V2 when I was looking at the higher cost printers. They look nice and get a ton of good reviews and can run and run without issue.

                                      I have been looking at printers now off and on for a couple months and really digging in the last 3 weeks. It is sooooo overwhelming to see all the options. I just know so many out there are clones and make with cheap parts and electronics. As someone that went to electronics school originally before jumping into computer networking and computers in general I do NOT like the thought of cheap electronics. I liked them back in trade school days because I made a pretty penny fixing all the cheap blown caps and smoked resisters. HAHA However, now with owning a house and having a family, I really don't want to chance burning the place down because I got some cheap electronic device that powers or runs something that is required to run for hours. Just the power supplies that run my computers cost $200-$300 each. A reason I am liking the CR-10 is the it comes kitted with mosfet and what looks to be a better power supply that delivers 360w. I am assuming that will be nice come time for mods and additions.

                                      I would really like to get started on learning and printing but I also don't want to go down the road of buying cheap, realizing I need something better and having to turn around and spend that same amount and then some if I had just waited a bit longer.

                                      Just wondering, if I do save up more and pull the trigger on something closer to the $800-$1000 mark... what would I get. All new dilemma just more money! HAHA

                                      Thank you for you insight and sharing your trials and tribulations! I will just continue to dig and look and see what I can find.

                                      Comment


                                        #20
                                        Originally posted by MidwestExpress


                                        Sounds good! My primary reason for getting printer is to not only have fun with printing things and exploring creativity with cad and what not, but I have a project going. I have been getting it printed at Shapeways and it is a two piece print. I have a lot of people wanting to purchase this project from me and I just don't want to pay the overhead of Shapeways. Now I know initially I will be eating it in the pants learning the printer and filament. However, I think about it as learning something new and getting new toy that I can use for many uses and other fun projects. That and I and I am getting tired of the cost and wait time of prototyping and cost of their filaments if you don't just use PLA. My project has a couple spots where the walls are only a couple mm thick and I need to design and print some braces. I just wish I could do stuff like that at home. Also, I want to play with filaments eventually like Petg, PLA plus, and ABS for the project to see what works best. The PLA has warped substantially already on my initial prototype and it is only a couple months old. I am hoping that the using some of the other filaments (ones that don't warp as easy due to atmospheric moisture and stronger) will give me the ability to print this initial project and make me feel better that I am putting out a stronger more sturdy product.

                                        I was also looking at the actual Prusa V2 when I was looking at the higher cost printers. They look nice and get a ton of good reviews and can run and run without issue.

                                        I have been looking at printers now off and on for a couple months and really digging in the last 3 weeks. It is sooooo overwhelming to see all the options. I just know so many out there are clones and make with cheap parts and electronics. As someone that went to electronics school originally before jumping into computer networking and computers in general I do NOT like the thought of cheap electronics. I liked them back in trade school days because I made a pretty penny fixing all the cheap blown caps and smoked resisters. HAHA However, now with owning a house and having a family, I really don't want to chance burning the place down because I got some cheap electronic device that powers or runs something that is required to run for hours. Just the power supplies that run my computers cost $200-$300 each. A reason I am liking the CR-10 is the it comes kitted with mosfet and what looks to be a better power supply that delivers 360w. I am assuming that will be nice come time for mods and additions.

                                        I would really like to get started on learning and printing but I also don't want to go down the road of buying cheap, realizing I need something better and having to turn around and spend that same amount and then some if I had just waited a bit longer.

                                        Just wondering, if I do save up more and pull the trigger on something closer to the $800-$1000 mark... what would I get. All new dilemma just more money! HAHA

                                        Thank you for you insight and sharing your trials and tribulations! I will just continue to dig and look and see what I can find.
                                        If you can spend $650 or so and build a kit or about $900 fir assembled a really good printer is the Prusa i3 mk2S. All the experts rave about this one and Prusa is the one all the clones try to emulate. It already comes with with good equipment that doesnt require so much modding. If I had that much I could throw at a printer (I dont), that would be my choice. Also the Ultimakers in that price range are considered pretty good.

                                        Comment


                                          #21
                                          Originally posted by dongray55 View Post
                                          If you can spend $650 or so and build a kit or about $900 fir assembled a really good printer is the Prusa i3 mk2S. All the experts rave about this one and Prusa is the one all the clones try to emulate. It already comes with with good equipment that doesnt require so much modding. If I had that much I could throw at a printer (I dont), that would be my choice. Also the Ultimakers in that price range are considered pretty good.
                                          I hear ya, I just don't want to dump that much cash at a hobby right now. HAHA I would love to have one that automatically does everything, buuuuuuut... i need to get my feet wet before I start shooting for the stars!

                                          Comment


                                            #22
                                            My first printer is a flashforge finder. I've done zero mods and I'm seven spools in, it's running most days and has been flawless with great prints.

                                            Had it four months now.

                                            Pla only but pla is great stuff.

                                            Comment


                                              #23
                                              Originally posted by chrispyfur View Post
                                              My first printer is a flashforge finder. I've done zero mods and I'm seven spools in, it's running most days and has been flawless with great prints.

                                              Had it four months now.

                                              Pla only but pla is great stuff.
                                              I just watched a video on it and they weren't showing some stringing issues.

                                              Have you had any issues with yours? A while ago I was looking at Monoprice's Ultimate enclosed printer. I like the solid housing. Easier to put walls on it too for stable ABS prints.

                                              That is also one of the things I am finding with the CR-10 and is making draw back. I have been seeing a lot of reports of people talking about y-axis sagging after a few months of use. I know they have a kit to add the second Y-axis stabilizer but I would have to do that as soon as I got it.

                                              I was also looking at the Anycubic i3 Mega because it is not very expensive and does auto level the bed. Still really loving all the auto features of the authentic Prusa Mk2s but that $700 cost for my first printer is keeping me check.

                                              Comment


                                                #24
                                                MidWest you might find like I did that ABS is not so hot to use. It has lots of drawbacks. When ABS and PLA were the main choices, ABS often won in part toughness and temperature tolerance. And you are right that you really need to enclose larger ABS prints to make them print well. Also it tends to smell bad as it is heated and the fumes are not good for you. Depending on the manufacturer, it will tend to stink up a room pretty quickly. So that might be a good reason to have your printer placed in a work room or something where you won't get chewed out by your coresidents for it's odor.

                                                I have been trying PETG and some other materials that have the easy print features and is much tougher than PLA and doesn't melt at lower temps. Also several other filament makers make stronger high temp plastics now that rival ABS and don't have it's strong smell or need to curl up on the sides and edges. I'm now using PETG for parts and things that need the durability of ABS. But because it costs a bit more, I tend to use plain PLA for figurines or decorative prints to save money. Unless your project must be in ABS, you might find easier materials to print that fit your needs. Of course learning to print is best done with PLA. There's fewer errors that are material based and you are primarily learning to dial in your settings faster. If you start with higher temp materials it is a bit more difficult to learn where a print went wrong unless you are sure you will always use that material. I found PLA was stable enough for most of my prints.

                                                While my printer said it supported temps up to 260 degrees, it really didn't well. I tried several types of higher temp filaments and I noticed the hot end really was cooking the PTFE tube that fed the filament. I did have some clogging issues at first after upgrading to the Micro Swiss all metal hot end. But like most changes to 3D prints I eventually learned to dial in the settings changes for that hot end. It did make my high temp plastic prints work and print much better and there is no PTFE tube to fry. Just have to be careful not to clog the all metal ones. A few printers come with an all metal hot end already installed. That's a good way to start as you won't have to learn one hot end then change a bunch of settings to match a new upgraded one. Most will have an upgrade path if not. What you might do is try ABS and see if you have issues. Then try PETG or any specialty filament. There are now lots of alternatives to ABS that give the benefits of it without the pitfalls. Also if you want to print flexible filament you may have to have a better extruder than what comes standard. Your printer models all have their preferred upgrades for extruders. Flexible filament is not something you want to start with. Till you gain proficiency with either PLA or ABS at least. Nylon and carbon fiber are also interesting to try when you have an all metal hot end. I'm still experimenting and learning that myself. I've found Nylon great for gears and moveable parts that need to be tough. I'm finding the carbon fiber stuff to be extremely tough once printed and I am loving the prints it produces. But it is expensive enough that I can't afford to use it everywhere. Also I completely wore out a good nozzle after 3 kg of carbon fiber was printed. So anyway you can see you have choices.

                                                Oh and also if you like auto bed leveling read the fine print carefully. A few manufacturers consider auto bed leveling to mean just moving the print head around while you manually adjust things from a thumbwheel. Some printers still require you to do a manual leveling occasionally and it's just fine tuning that with the auto leveling.

                                                Also the type of auto bed leveling your printer uses can effect the material you use for your print bed later. Auto levelers that really do the job for you can have sensors that are mechanical, or inductive, or capacitive, or optical. Which type of leveling it has determines the material it can see. So for instance you might not be able to use a glass plate bed later if your leveler is optical. Mechanical sensors can be slow and innaccurate but reliable if read slowly. Leveling sensors should be run slowly between prints. It's a proven fact that if you level too quickly the values can be way off depending on type. On some beds whether they are heated or not at the time of the reading also makes a big difference.

                                                Sometimes taking the 2-3 minutes to manually adjust bed leveling gives better looking prints than auto bed leveling does. While it can seem annoying to do for the beginner, after a wile you'll get to where you can quickly do it manually too. The big difference in how often you have to do it is dependant on so many factors that everyone has different results. Sometime even having to roughly pry a print off the bed can effect it's leveling. The cheaper printers also often come with thin bottom bed plates (not the heated one but the one that sits on). These thin plates can actually bend and warp over time. One of the mods that is often at the top of the list for some printer owners is to replace that bottom plate with a sturdier or thicker one. I know on my printer, I used to have to relevel the bed after every print. After replacing the bed with a better one, I now only have to do it every 4 or 5 prints or when one was tough to pull off the bed.

                                                And just so you know, stringing issues are almost always caused by print settings not being dialed in well. Usually a combo of temps used and print speed and extraction settings. Stringiness is almost always fixable via settings although it might take you several prints to get it dialed in just right. This is one of those places where you want to have a calibration or torture test print that doesn't take long. That way you can see the error, stop the print, change some settings, clear the bed and print a new one again until you figure out what causes it.
                                                Last edited by dongray55; 08-10-2017, 02:50 AM.

                                                Comment


                                                  #25
                                                  Originally posted by dongray55 View Post
                                                  MidWest you might find like I did that ABS is not so hot to use. It has lots of drawbacks. When ABS and PLA were the main choices, ABS often won in part toughness and temperature tolerance. And you are right that you really need to enclose larger ABS prints to make them print well. Also it tends to smell bad as it is heated and the fumes are not good for you. Depending on the manufacturer, it will tend to stink up a room pretty quickly. So that might be a good reason to have your printer placed in a work room or something where you won't get chewed out by your coresidents for it's odor.

                                                  I have been trying PETG and some other materials that have the easy print features and is much tougher than PLA and doesn't melt at lower temps. Also several other filament makers make stronger high temp plastics now that rival ABS and don't have it's strong smell or need to curl up on the sides and edges. I'm now using PETG for parts and things that need the durability of ABS. But because it costs a bit more, I tend to use plain PLA for figurines or decorative prints to save money. Unless your project must be in ABS, you might find easier materials to print that fit your needs. Of course learning to print is best done with PLA. There's fewer errors that are material based and you are primarily learning to dial in your settings faster. If you start with higher temp materials it is a bit more difficult to learn where a print went wrong unless you are sure you will always use that material. I found PLA was stable enough for most of my prints.

                                                  While my printer said it supported temps up to 260 degrees, it really didn't well. I tried several types of higher temp filaments and I noticed the hot end really was cooking the PTFE tube that fed the filament. I did have some clogging issues at first after upgrading to the Micro Swiss all metal hot end. But like most changes to 3D prints I eventually learned to dial in the settings changes for that hot end. It did make my high temp plastic prints work and print much better and there is no PTFE tube to fry. Just have to be careful not to clog the all metal ones. A few printers come with an all metal hot end already installed. That's a good way to start as you won't have to learn one hot end then change a bunch of settings to match a new upgraded one. Most will have an upgrade path if not. What you might do is try ABS and see if you have issues. Then try PETG or any specialty filament. There are now lots of alternatives to ABS that give the benefits of it without the pitfalls. Also if you want to print flexible filament you may have to have a better extruder than what comes standard. Your printer models all have their preferred upgrades for extruders. Flexible filament is not something you want to start with. Till you gain proficiency with either PLA or ABS at least. Nylon and carbon fiber are also interesting to try when you have an all metal hot end. I'm still experimenting and learning that myself. I've found Nylon great for gears and moveable parts that need to be tough. I'm finding the carbon fiber stuff to be extremely tough once printed and I am loving the prints it produces. But it is expensive enough that I can't afford to use it everywhere. Also I completely wore out a good nozzle after 3 kg of carbon fiber was printed. So anyway you can see you have choices.

                                                  Oh and also if you like auto bed leveling read the fine print carefully. A few manufacturers consider auto bed leveling to mean just moving the print head around while you manually adjust things from a thumbwheel. Some printers still require you to do a manual leveling occasionally and it's just fine tuning that with the auto leveling.

                                                  Also the type of auto bed leveling your printer uses can effect the material you use for your print bed later. Auto levelers that really do the job for you can have sensors that are mechanical, or inductive, or capacitive, or optical. Which type of leveling it has determines the material it can see. So for instance you might not be able to use a glass plate bed later if your leveler is optical. Mechanical sensors can be slow and innaccurate but reliable if read slowly. Leveling sensors should be run slowly between prints. It's a proven fact that if you level too quickly the values can be way off depending on type. On some beds whether they are heated or not at the time of the reading also makes a big difference.

                                                  Sometimes taking the 2-3 minutes to manually adjust bed leveling gives better looking prints than auto bed leveling does. While it can seem annoying to do for the beginner, after a wile you'll get to where you can quickly do it manually too. The big difference in how often you have to do it is dependant on so many factors that everyone has different results. Sometime even having to roughly pry a print off the bed can effect it's leveling. The cheaper printers also often come with thin bottom bed plates (not the heated one but the one that sits on). These thin plates can actually bend and warp over time. One of the mods that is often at the top of the list for some printer owners is to replace that bottom plate with a sturdier or thicker one. I know on my printer, I used to have to relevel the bed after every print. After replacing the bed with a better one, I now only have to do it every 4 or 5 prints or when one was tough to pull off the bed.

                                                  And just so you know, stringing issues are almost always caused by print settings not being dialed in well. Usually a combo of temps used and print speed and extraction settings. Stringiness is almost always fixable via settings although it might take you several prints to get it dialed in just right. This is one of those places where you want to have a calibration or torture test print that doesn't take long. That way you can see the error, stop the print, change some settings, clear the bed and print a new one again until you figure out what causes it.
                                                  I think I have just been overwhelming myself with all the choices that are available. I have come to this conclusion... I will get a Prusa i3 Mk2S. I am going to wait for next month and I will have enough in "New Projects" account to snag one up. Once I get that dialed in and printing good, I will start to build some other reprap project maybe.

                                                  When it comes to filament, I will probably initially just run PLA of course, test with some PLA+, and then PETG. I know I will be for printing some dial in cubes and then some temp towers and such to see where I need to be for my print jobs. I need to figure out where to put it so that I have consistent printouts. I would say the basement, but I have been getting water in there and haven't got the sump pump cut in yet. Hoping to get that done in the next month or two.

                                                  Comment

                                                  Register or Login

                                                  Collapse
                                                  Working...
                                                  X