TAZ 2 Print Quality Finally Sorted (Hopefully)

We have really been struggling with print quality issues with our TAZ 2 printer and were getting really frustrated about not getting anything that resembled a decent print. We were trying all kinds of different filament (all from LulzBot), testing different Slic3r settings, constantly calibrating the bed and nothing was working. We’d often get prints that looked like this (and this was one of the better prints):


I went to the open house recently at Aleph Objects and was able to show one of the engineers examples of our prints and got some advice about what to do, what to take a look at, etc. They first instructed me to do an extrusion calibration to make sure the machine was feeding the correct amount. After running that test, it was fine (no issues). I then did a large series of bed calibrations (adjusting bed springs and Z-axis end stop) to make sure it was “just right” on the height of the filament being extruded–it’s amazing how fine the adjustments are you need to make with both the Z-axis end stop and the bed spring screws.

After getting that all dialed in, we were still getting really inconsistent prints. We were using the “Medium” Slic3r profile available for download from the TAZ 2 Downloads section. LulzBot staff asked that I send the Slic3r profile we were using (the one we downloaded from the LulzBot site) and they said there were some strange settings in it. They emailed me a Slic3r profile they’d been using and told me to try it with our objects. Looking at our first prints with the profile they provided–the changes were dramatic with the new parts we printed with the new profile. We are finally getting parts that look like they are supposed to–I’d just about given up on the printer.

Here’s an example of a recent print. On the left is what we were getting, on the right is what we are getting using the new Slic3r profile:


I’ve attached the Slic3r profile to this thread in the hopes that it might help any of the rest of you that are struggling with this.
Medium-.35noz.ini (3.03 KB)

Thanks for posting that slicer config. I have been getting the same crap results from the official config files on the website. I will give this one a shot. :smiley:

You’re welcome and good luck with it! Just make sure you get some really good looking bed calibration prints first and then hopefully you should see some better results like we did.

You’ll find that when printing smaller objects, increasing the infill density is helpful.

The main differences between the Medium config file posted here (nice print btw!) and the one posted in the download section are:

fill_density = 0.8 vs 0.2
perimeters = 3 vs 1 (always a good idea to have more perimeters for parts when the main force/wear will be the walls.)
Slower printing speeds throughout (will give a cleaner print)

start_gcode = G28 ; home all axes\nG1 Z5 F5000 ; lift nozzle (the last part- G1 Z5 F5000 will lift the Z axis as the first movement after homing. Depending on how tight your Z axis endstop adjustment is, this may be fine, or cause poor first layer performance. Either lower the endstop adjustment slightly to compensate, or remove the G1 line if it causes issues)

You’ll find that you’ll end up tweaking your existing Slic3r profiles for different parts, as there is no one good universal slicing profile. You’ll need to balance things out based on the desired charachteristecs of the part.

edit: spelling

Yep, definitely agree that the profiles will always have to be tweaked a bit depending on the part. But from the profiles online, we just couldn’t get them to work at all. We are also using a .35mm nozzle instead of a .5mm nozzle, and we were told this also in our last response from LulzBot:

There are some strange settings in that configuration that you sent over, it’s trying to combine the infill for every 2 layers, but at a .25 layer height this leads to infill that’s .5mm thick - not really possible with a .35 nozzle.

Here is another print we just did, of the large herringbone gear and again, the quality is way better using this new profile that we were sent. Old gear is in orange, new gear is in green:


The orange gear looks exactly like what you get if you try to use a .5mm nozzle profile on a .35mm nozzle.

That was my original thought as well, but it looks like the profiles available for download from the TAZ 2 section of profiles are for .35mm nozzles which is what we were using (orange gear). It’s been a frustrating two months of getting prints that look like what you see in that orange gear. We are just thrilled to finally have regular looking prints coming off this printer. Whatever magic/settings combo is in that profile we were sent, we are very happy using it as a new starting point, as we are getting really consistent results with it so far.

I am testing this new slicer profile now. I already had to delete the G1 line because it was totally screwing the first layer by raising the nozzle too high.

I can give an X2 on the statement that the profiles available on the website do not produce usable prints on my machine. :unamused: They are awful, in fact.

I just received a warranty replacement heated bed so it will get a trial run with the new profile.

Those green prints are looking pretty damn good!!!

We are getting new default profiles up there ASAP. I’m going to track down how we got those ones up there, as they are mediocre configs. Sorry for that.

-Jeff

Please post the new profiles. These are the difference between happy and unhappy users. Seems to me this would have your highest priority.

Here’s a new one that is fast and makes a nice part:

http://download.lulzbot.com/TAZ/3.1/software/2014Q1/slic3r/config/Fast_ABS_no-support_pt35nzl_pt28-lyr-height.ini

New ones will land here:
https://www.lulzbot.com/?q=support/taz-slic3r-profiles

Thanks,

-Jeff

I will try this tomorrow! Maybe this is why i have been getting pretty poor quality prints since i started. :smiley: