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  1. #1
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    My layers are not solid

    Hi folks. I've searched the wisdom that is google and am still at a loss.
    I'm printing with a Prusa iv3 10".
    I have calibrated and adjusted my extruder
    .40 nozzle printing at 194 on a bed heated to 64 on glass
    I've used different slicers, and changed the settings I understand, and a few I don't. No matter what I get these results. Basically, my layers are not solid, they end up being a screen.
    Here's a picture of the 2nd or 3rd layer of a print last night:


    During this print I used the ramps board to up the flow to 120 (120%??) and I had evidence of over extrusion. That makes me think I am extruding the proper amount of filament.
    This print was .15 layer height.
    Do you need any more info? Do you have any ideas?
    Thanks for reading.

  2. #2
    Engineer Marm's Avatar
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    That looks like a good print to me. Are you wanting a perfectly flat finished surface when done? I've never been able to achieve that. If that's ABS, you can do an Acetone vapor bath and that will help smooth over the edges.

    There might be a setting to change the bead width, make it smaller some and that might help the problem. If you're telling the slicer you have a .4 nozzle, tell it you have a .38 or so, and see what that does.

  3. #3
    Staff Engineer printbus's Avatar
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    I'd like to see the bottom of the first layer. If that's not solid, it suggests you're starting with too large of a gap between the nozzle and the print surface. If there's too large of a gap for the first layer, it can affect the print quality of many layers above it.

  4. #4
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    As far as I know, PLA should be closer to 200-210degrees, I know thats around what mine runs, with a bed heat of 70 I think.

    how many shell layers are you using? seems pretty thick before it starts its infill
    Also how many top layers are you using? I normally print with 3 solid top layers. Takes a bit to get that nice solid top.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marm View Post
    That looks like a good print to me. Are you wanting a perfectly flat finished surface when done? I've never been able to achieve that. If that's ABS, you can do an Acetone vapor bath and that will help smooth over the edges.

    There might be a setting to change the bead width, make it smaller some and that might help the problem. If you're telling the slicer you have a .4 nozzle, tell it you have a .38 or so, and see what that does.
    I think you're right, I'm still having slight under-extrusion issues. I don't want a perfectly flat top, well, yes I do but don't expect it haha. What you're seeing is the 2nd or 3rd layer on a 100% infill print. Seems to me that those lines should connect, essentially making one solid layer? I'll play around with the extrusion or nozzle size to see what happens.
    Thanks for your reply.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marm View Post
    That looks like a good print to me. Are you wanting a perfectly flat finished surface when done? I've never been able to achieve that. If that's ABS, you can do an Acetone vapor bath and that will help smooth over the edges.

    There might be a setting to change the bead width, make it smaller some and that might help the problem. If you're telling the slicer you have a .4 nozzle, tell it you have a .38 or so, and see what that does.
    I threw away the print so I can't take another picture of the bottom. The bottom is mostly solid, with some areas where the lines don't connect. I can't remember the thickness of the feeler gauge I use, but it's the same thickness as notebook paper.
    I think I will fudge the nozzle diameter to .38 or .35 and see what happens.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by VonKlutch View Post
    As far as I know, PLA should be closer to 200-210degrees, I know thats around what mine runs, with a bed heat of 70 I think.

    how many shell layers are you using? seems pretty thick before it starts its infill
    Also how many top layers are you using? I normally print with 3 solid top layers. Takes a bit to get that nice solid top.
    I've always seen pla temps listed as 180-220. I've tried 206 and didn't see a difference. I typically print 2-3 bottom and 3 top layers. The layer pictured is the 2nd or 3rd layer of a 100% infill print.
    Am I crazy for thinking the layer should actually be, essentially a solid sheet of plastic?

  8. #8
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    I don't know if it'll work, but I attached a zoomed in version of the above image. I'll hotlink one as well.

    You can see that there are two layers, neither of wich is solid on places. I tried to print a vase a long time ago. it didn't hold water haha.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  9. #9
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    It turns out that when I calibrated my extruder, I should have used a caliper that measured in mms. I was using a non-metric caliper and converting. I suspect the conversion was causing an inaccurate measurement. All seems better now.

  10. #10
    Engineer Marm's Avatar
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    See Also: Mars Climate Orbiter.

    Don't feel bad, even NASA f***s that one up sometimes.

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