CC3D "Silk" PLA Cura settings on LulzBot Mini?

Hello, I’ve been trying to get consistent prints with CC3D’s “Silk” (Copper) PLA filament, but keep having issues with the filament flow stopping mod-print, and lots of grinding/shavings from the filament near the hobbed bolt. I’ve tried different tightness on the tension bolts, different temperatures (keeping it at 230C for now), retraction depths, print speed, etc.
Here’s the filament I’m talking about:
Found some talk about it on Reddit and other places, but not having much luck with the suggestions there. It seems like it might be clogging the nozzle, but the weird thing is that I did have a couple of successful test prints initially, so I’m wondering if it was luck, or if it’s gradually clogging the nozzle more and more. However, I switched pack to regular PolyMaker PLA and my tests printed fine, so one would think it’s not actually a clog, just some kind of stoppage.
If anyone happens to have Cura settings that work for them consistently, I’d love to hear about it. Thanks!

I’ve never printed this Silk PLA but I have printed with Carbon Fiber PLA and it too was more difficult to print then regular PLA, you would think it’d be easier since it had carbon fiber mixed in with it. I think the trick for me was to lower the temperature and slow down the printing speed. Printing speed isn’t linear so cutting the speed in half won’t take twice as long to print. 230C is also a bit high of a temperature. Try reducing it to 215C and halve your printing speed. Let us know your results.

Thanks for the advice, I’ll let you know how things turn out!

I took the temp down to 210C, retraction distance to 0.5mm, but left print speed at 60mm/s, and the test print I performed just now turned out pretty well, and even shinier than at 230C. I’ve got another suite of tests I’m printing now to verify those settings.

One issue I noticed late in the game is that it appears that spool tension may be an issue with this filament; whereas other filaments would just “tug” at the spool as it prints, I think this one may be slipping past the hobbed bolt because it’s got such a slippery surface to begin with. I did notice a lot of shavings and filament chewing even at the same retention tightness that we were printing regular PLA at with no problem. So I did tighten the retention bolts a bit to try to prevent that slippage, and it would seem to be working so far, but I plan to keep an eye out with longer prints where even minor slippage over time could add up to a problem.

My latest test prints turned out the best of any I’ve done with this filament. Very clean and crisp, and quite shiny!

I wanted to export all the settings (I created a new custom material profile for the filament with two new printing profiles), but I can’t seem to export the full settings from Cura, nor can I find where they are stored so I could just copy whatever file(s) they’re in. Anyone know how I can do this? I’d be happy to upload my profile for this filament if so. Thanks!

Good to hear your prints are now turning out with the Silk PLA. You might even be able to disable retraction all together but if its working with .5mm retraction don’t fix what isn’t broke. To minimize retractions be sure you enable Combing Mode mode under the Travel section. This setting makes your nozzle travel over your print where your infill would be, so if any filament where to drizzle out it would just fall in your infill area and be covered up by your top layers, thus no need to retract. If that option isn’t available for you you’ll need to turn it on in the Settings section of Cura.

Seems to me a tighter tension grip on the filament works better than a looser one. Your custom profiles should be stored in this directory: C:\Users\username\AppData\Roaming\cura-lulzbot\3.6\quality

Thanks for the printing tips and the Cura definition info!
I’ll take a look at the combing option.

Turns out we had the combing option on by default, which I think I’ll just leave on for this profile since it seems to be working okay.

I tinkered with the profile cfg files in that Roaming folder, and I guess we can’t delete the “default” Medium, High Speed, High detail profiles that are there. When I did it, Cura complained and even made my re-choose my printer, lol, so I ended up putting back the ones I deleted. I opened them up in Notepad and see they’re just straight text, and appear to be inheriting from some other base file(s), so I may mess with those again at some point to try to clean up the options for my custom filament profile, but for now I think I’ll leave as-is, and at least I should be able to copy these from one machine to another. If anyone wants a copy, I can post the settings here (I may also email them to CC3D). The copper and the gold look really nice when printed (the copper really does look like copper). The silver looks more like pewter, not bad, but not actually silver.