- May 14, 2017
- Reaction score
- Southampton, England
Folks there are lots of good points in Stones reply. I was lucky with the Dremel printer, the first part worked great and then I was making my own designs in no time at all. I was only in one learning process that being slicing and materials as the machine is prebuilt and tested.My first few 3D printers were VERY frustrating experiences. It took me days or weeks to solve the many issues that affect print quality. Reprinting with the same settings / method was also not consistent.
I have had 2 or 3 printers, including a very expensive $2000 model which had a 400mm x 400m x 400m build capacity. All of them gave problems, the most frequent been, getting the print to stay stuck to the deck. This is a universal 3D print problem. People overlay their build decks with glue, blue tap, slurries, etc to try improving the stick. If these methods do manage to hold the job on the build plate, it makes it a pain to have to reset between each print because you must clean of the “additives” and reapply.
Then I bought a Creality CR-10 for my teenage nephew because I wanted to encourage him to learn CAD and CAM. In a day he was up and printing! The much cheaper Creality CR-10 totally blew away my $2000 specialized printers.
Within a month I bought my self the Creality CR-10S pro. What a relief! What a pleasure! It has an impressive 300x300x400mm build volume. But that is not what makes it nice. It is nice because it is easy to setup, easy to maintain, printers are fantastic. It just works. I gave away all the other printers.
It automatically levels before each print and then away it goes. Best of all the job sticks, I mean really sticks. Initially this was a problem because it was very hard to get the job off the build deck it. However, with the on vent of a flexible build plate that magnetises onto the printer, printing and removing is a 30 second breeze. Once the job is finished you take the build plate off the magnetic under surface in a second, give it a bend and job pops straight off with ease. Now I can quickly set up with auto levelling, print without worrying about lifting, and pop it of afterwards. Printing has become a pleasure. I found it impossible to get the job to stick to the flexible PEX build surface, but the flexible Polycarbonate (or PC) sticks perfectly, just like to PC that comes standard on the Creality CR-10S pro.
Creality CR-10S pro also has a geared feed which many printers do not have.
I do my design in a CAD software (Fusion 360, Solidworks, etc), save as STL. Then drag and drop the STL into Simply3D which generates the Gcode and saves it to a microSD. Put the SD card in the Creality and print. No messing about with all sorts of frustrating setups and tapes and what not.
Simply3D is a pleasure to use (PC and Linux versions available), and with a bit of google power you can find the pre-configured settings (small FFF file I can send you) for Simply3D that matches a Creality CR-10S pro that produces amazing prints straight off the bat. The combination of Simply3D ($149) and a Creality CR-10S pro ($539) makes getting the print done painless.
You can buy a cheaper machine, and then try adding the auto levelling, geared feeds, and many other tweaks, you soon discover are needed to try get consistent prints, or just buy the Creality and enjoy a machine that just works first time.
As for the size, bigger prints take longer, but when you need it, you need it! It is not always possible to print smaller parts and assemble. On the rear occasion I need make a big print, I setup in the morning. Start the print and let it run for the day or so with confidence it will not shrink and lift off the corner after printer for hours or a day (this very frequently occurred on other machines) forcing a reattempt from scratch.
I would suggest that build plate adhesion is a little disconnected from machine hardware, my experience is that it is more related to the parts foot print, materials being cut, first layer settings and the release plate surface (blue tape etc).
I have found that the first layer benefits from being quite course (not 0.05 to 0.1mm), then to quickly switch back to a fine layer if that detail is required.