Support or not?

I got my Taz 4 about 2 weeks ago, since then I have only had 2 successful prints :frowning: One issue I seem to be coming across is using supports or not.

I usually keep the head at 230 C and then bed at 87 C (seems to stick better). I am using ABS juice on the PET surface.

I have downloaded a few little skulls from Thingiverse and it would appear I need support, so I am exporting the G-Code with support. Slic3r does error out sometimes…not a fan of the software. Anyway, when I print with support, I only get about 10mm in height before the print goes bad. Some of the tiny supports just fall over or do not have any rigidity. Last night I tried to print the skull (saber toothed cat skull), without any support and it got much further…about 30mm in height and then went to shit (model detached from the surface and then printed 5 min worth of spaghetti).

So, using support I get nowhere, no support I get further but the model eventually breaks from the surface. What should I do…try a thicker coating of ABS juice? It’s frustrating not getting any results…well any finished results.

Thank you for any advice…

I printed this skull a few weeks ago:

A few things to consider.

  1. I have completely enclosed my Taz4 to trap in heat and prevent cross-drafts from effecting print. The ambient temp inside my enclosure sits somewhere in the 90-95F degrees area. If your TAZ isn’t enclosed somehow that might be part of your problem.

  2. I run my bed temp anywhere from 95c to 105c.

  3. If your parts are popping off bed during print, your ABS solution doesn’t have enough ABS in it. Be careful though, too much ABS makes parts impossible to get off bed without destroying the PET, or the part, or both. So follow the instructions for mixing the ABS closely. Apply a new treatment of solution before each print.

  4. Are you using a Lulzbot supplied profile? You might want to post your gcode so advanced users can spot where part of your problems might be. I use the Lulzbot profles and very lightly tweak them.

  5. Is your fan running during print? For some things you print in ABS you want it on, for others you don’t. ABS is a tricky and fickle beast I’m learning.

  6. The first layer thickness is crucial sometimes for how much your part sticks or doesn’t stick to bed. Do you know what your setting is for the first layer?

  7. Have you tried adding a “brim” feature? I often put a 5mm “brim” on thin walled parts to give them added “stick” to bed. Then trim it off once part is peeled off bed.

  8. Are you feeling very positive about how level your bed is and the gap distance from the extruder head?

Those are my quick thoughts as a “newbie” myself. I’m learning so much so fast with this. ABS is not very forgiving but there are some tricks you can try.

Good luck and be sure to post a picture of your skull when you get it completed.