New to the forum, planning on picking up a Taz 6 before the end of the year (waiting to see if there’s a Black Friday deal). I’ve been lurking for a couple of weeks, trying to absorb pertinent information so I’m not at a complete loss when I actually get the hardware.
I assembled my own CNC kit earlier this year (X-Carve), and have developed a pretty good handle (if I do say so myself) on modeling and CAM. I should download Cura and play around a little in there to get some familiarity with slicing. I’m an electrical engineer by profession, to boot, so I feel like I have an adequate level of technical competency, and am confident in my experimenting, problem solving, and learning capabilities.
Anyway, enough blabber… One of the (very few) things that irks me a little about the Taz printers is their use of 3 mm filament extrusion hardware as opposed to 1.75 mm, as there seems to be a significantly wider selection of brands and varieties of 1.75 mm filament available. I have read that many people have gotten away with using 1.75 mm filament on their stock Taz tool heads needing only to use slightly conservative extrusion settings, if requiring any adjustment at all (beyond telling Cura that they’re using smaller filament, of course. I’ve also read of people inserting PTFE tubing into their hot end and cutting it right at the hobbed bolt (at an appropriate angle) to help eliminate buckling between the hobbed bolt and nozzle. Lastly, replacing the hotend for one designed for 1.75 mm filament is also an option - Hexagon 1.75 mm hotends don’t seem too difficult to come by, and even switching to another brand/manufacturer doesn’t seem terribly daunting.
Going the PTFE route seems easiest/simplest, but you lose the “all metal” aspect of the hotend. My question is, is that a big deal? PTFE has a melting point somewhere above 300 °C, and pretty much every filament type I’ve looked into has a melting point fairly well below that, generally not exceeding the upper 200’s. Can flexible filament still be used with the PTFE mod applied? I guess a simpler question would be, are there any drastic advantages to replacing the entire hotend for 1.75 mm filament support as opposed to just using a PTFE tube?
…also, honestly, I’d like to know if this tree is even worth barking up. Obviously the available selection of 3 mm filaments isn’t lacking, there just appears to be much more available in the smaller diameter, especially when it comes to exotics.
Thanks all, looking forward to joining the community!