Noob with a 3DP-12 Hictop I3 Prusa

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Shazam0527
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3D Printer(s): Hictop I3 3dp-12

Noob with a 3DP-12 Hictop I3 Prusa

Post by Shazam0527 » May 16th, 2017, 7:36 pm

First off I want to introduce myself - I'm new to 3d printing and very excited. I bought a Hictop I3 Prusa (3DP-11-ATL which according to Hictop is a 3DP-12 because of auto-leveling and an inductive Z-stop sensor)

On to the reason I need help. I've tried the automatic bed leveling, and it does the whole 9 point test, but in order to get it to print/stick properly, I have to adjust the bed while it's printing. So I decided to put the previous version of the firmware in place (only thing missing was the auto leveling) and decided to manually level the bed myself. I go to 4 points around the edges of the bed and do the A2 paper slide test. I get all four corners at the right height, start the print, and bam - still have to adjust the bed in order to get it to stick/print.

What am I doing wrong? Any advice would be greatly appreciated...

shocksofmighty
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3D Printer(s): FFCP, HICTOP i3

Re: Noob with a 3DP-12 Hictop I3 Prusa

Post by shocksofmighty » May 16th, 2017, 10:10 pm

What are you printing on? Tape? Nearly all of the build plates are warped. Try printing towards the front or back instead of the center and see if it makes a difference. Your slicer should also be able to reduce the first layer height to improve first layer adhesion.

Shazam0527
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Re: Noob with a 3DP-12 Hictop I3 Prusa

Post by Shazam0527 » May 16th, 2017, 10:26 pm

Yes, printing on blue painters tape. Once it starts to print, I then have to manually adjust the bed a little bit to make it work. Then is fine until I start a new print. Then the process starts again.

Btw, it always seems like the right side is off most.

GrueMaster
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Re: Noob with a 3DP-12 Hictop I3 Prusa

Post by GrueMaster » May 16th, 2017, 11:17 pm

I had similar issues when I first started. The key to the autoleveler is to get it calibrated so that when it thinks Z=0, the extruder tip is close enough to barely slide a piece of paper under (I use a piece of standard printer paper). It will take several attempts to get it set right using auto-home from the printer menu, but once it is set, you shouldn't have to readjust it until you change your hot end assembly (it will happen). I suggest getting it set, then printing http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1534152 as it is tons easier to readjust. Also, look in the firmware forum here for Chip's firmware. I have the latest Marlin and it is much better than the stock Hictop firmware. The links here have the autolevel set to a 6x8 grid, which will help with any bed warping. Try a few bed test prints (again, Thingiverse).

Adjust your xy-jerk to something around 2-5 (default of 20 is really hard on the printer and tends to shake things loose). You mentioned blue tape. I have found that the 3M #2090 works the best, and I have had very bad results with the newer 2080 (delicate surfaces) tape as it is very slick on top. I have also tried using a glue stick, but since printing the leveler adjuster mount, I no longer need it.

Thingiverse has a lot of mods for this brand of printer. Most are for earlier versions, but if you have injection molded parts (mainly for the Z axis), you should be fine.

Shazam0527
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Re: Noob with a 3DP-12 Hictop I3 Prusa

Post by Shazam0527 » May 17th, 2017, 3:25 am

I'm glad you mentioned the z stop adjuster. I have that installed already. I will try the firmware you recommend. :-P

shocksofmighty
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Re: Noob with a 3DP-12 Hictop I3 Prusa

Post by shocksofmighty » May 17th, 2017, 8:59 am

I ditched auto-level pretty early on. It is a poor design with the sensor so far away from the nozzle. It is much easier to get good prints using a piece of glass and leveling every 5-10 prints.

Shazam0527
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Re: Noob with a 3DP-12 Hictop I3 Prusa

Post by Shazam0527 » May 17th, 2017, 12:57 pm

Do you recommend a specific type of glass? (tempered, standard,etc?) I'm a complete noobie and don't want to screw this up.. :) And when I get the glass, do I still put the blue painters tape on the glass or will it adhere to the surface?

shocksofmighty
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Re: Noob with a 3DP-12 Hictop I3 Prusa

Post by shocksofmighty » May 18th, 2017, 7:25 am

Pretty much any glass will do. You can put tape on glass, but I find that the great advantage of glass is that it is easier to get prints off of it than the tape.You also can just take the glass off to remove prints, instead of trying to pry things off the build plate which certainly is not good for the level of the plate. I use a glue stick to help adhesion, some use hair spray. Keep in mind that when you switch to glass you have to add a Z-limit switch or rig up the sensor to sit on the frame and detect the carriage rods.

Don't worry about screwing up. That's how you learn! (Just screw up small, not big)

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