upgrading the mini questions

Hello all,

I’ve had the mini for over a year now and its treated me very well and caused little to no issues. Unfortunately, the upper section of my bed cracked and came up off with my print and I’m looking for a replacement.

I think it’s wise to go ahead and get the new bed upgrades they released recently - the Modular print bed heater along with the Glass/PEI print surface. Since I’m now on the upgrade path, I figured I would look into other things that I could go ahead and fix up on the mini while it’s down.

  1. Is there a way I could tell what version of mini that I have? Google wasn’t very helpful finding this answer for me. If it helps - I ordered this printer in November 2016. I noticed topics about noise reduction and ultimately came across this - http://www.processio.com/lulzbot-mini-y-axis-noise-killer/ .

  2. How does Lulzbot’s own Aerostruder head compare to the one from itworks3d? I noticed that the one from itworks3d can be ordered to use 1.75mm filaments whereas the Aerostruder can only work with 3.00. I also own a Prusa i3 mk2 so having to stock only 1 size filament would be very convenient but at the same time, I’m not using Lulzbot’s own head. Would this cause any support/warranty issues?

  1. https://ohai.lulzbot.com/ shows the step by step assembly for the minis. Basically the 1.04 version has a different / better bed cable, a different Rambo board version that my have the LCD header, and the newer style hotend. The 1.3 to 1.00 changes are less easily noticeable. Given the date range you probably have a 1.02 or a 1.03.

  2. It looks about the same, the main difference is the cooling duct and the mount.

To determine which version you have, check your serial number against the “production batches” listed here:

Once you have the “name” (i.e., Gladiola / Foxglove / etc.), open the folder of that name and look in the “production docs” and “production parts” folders to find specific build information for your machine.

No answer on the LB vs IT3D aerostruders… But I have a LB Aerostruder being delivered tomorrow! :slight_smile:

Cool, thanks for the help! My serial number ends with 6800 so it looks like I have a Foxglove.

Scott - Do let us know how the LB Aerostruder is! (easy to swap, calibrate, etc.)


I recently upgraded to the Titan-Aero extruder (ITW version) and the Modular Bed System. Very happy with both!

Awesome! I placed my order for the Modular Bed system. I’m stuck on trying to make a decision between the ITW version vs LB’s own. Did you happen to get 1.75mm or 3.00mm? Any compatibility or things you had to change around to get it to work?

I got the ITW 3mm version. Pretty simple install. Make sure you follow the recommended steps that are posted on the ITW site. (installation, setting esteps, etc.) After that I just had to tweak the Z-offset a bit in my slicer settings and I was up and printing. All in all it took about 2 hours (I went really slow) to swap the toolheads and get printing, which included printing a few small flat square test objects to tweak my Z-offset back where I wanted it. You will need to have Cura 2.6 to update the Mini’s firmware to recognize the Titan-Aero. That was in the referred to in the install steps on the ITW site and was also quick and easy.

I went with the ITW version because they offer several upgrade options that I was considering, although I ended up going with the basic version, but it’s nice to know I can swap nozzles at any time and they have many different ones in stock. I will say that was a relatively painless upgrade and I’m really glad I did it. :wink:

Hey CoParaTech –

Did you follow the ITW recommendations to install multiple “printers” to accommodate different E-steps with different filaments?

That part concerns me (my Aerostruder is in the mail…). Cura 2.6 doesn’t have that E-step setting, although I guess the same principle could be used (i.e., multiple printer copies, with M92’s in the start gcode).

But I was hoping to keep one basic e-step value and one start script, while managing the filament differences with changes to the per-filament extrusion multiplier setting. That should accomplish the same thing, without multiple printer definitions and scripts – but ITW seems to advocate against using the extrusion multiplier for this.

Have you experimented with that? How are you managing the recommended e-step differences between filaments?

I did not set up multiple Esteps. I just did the normal Esteps calibration and change the setting accordingly. I’ve only run two different filaments so far, but I did check the Esteps after changing filament and running a few prints just to see if there was a difference and there was not, so I left it alone. I don’t think it’s going to be an issue. The prints so far from both filaments (HT & Raptor PLA) look great.

Have you printed any Ninjaflex yet? Accommodating different filament hardness is where itworks3d recommends multiple “machine” definitions in Cura, so the start gcode can have different E-steps. The itworks3d notes say to expect about 400 for solid, 440 for semi-flex, and 500 for flex. I haven’t calibrated yet; so far just using the default 420 and adjusting the extrusion multiplier – but did see under-extrusion with Ninjaflex until I got up to about 115-120%. Lulzbot uses 115% in their Cura2 Ninjaflex profile for mini/aerostruder.

I’m a little confused by the idler tensioning recommendations. Can’t find anything about that in Lulzbot’s instructions. The itworks3d instructions say “~2 turns from fully loose” for solid filaments, and that some flexibles need 1-2 turns tighter. But that is backwards from my experience so far; I had more consistent feeding with the knob looser for Ninjaflex rather than tighter. (Edit: Just saw that the e3d wiki says flexibles need less force, so that’s consistent with what I experienced.)

The thing I immediately dislike about the Lulzbot Aerostruder – is nozzle visibility. Very hard to see the nozzle due to the fan duct and fan, and that makes it hard (particularly with smaller parts) to see what the first few layers are doing as they print. The itworks3d design looks better in this area, as the duct is tapered around the sides and the fan is relocated, both of which make the print head more visible… But still a lot less visibility with either design than with the standard AO-hex extruder.

I also got the unenviable chance to disassemble an aerostruder already… Made a mistake (“don’t do this!”) and tried to manually pull some Alloy910 out at about 160C – never any problem doing that on the Hexagon, but it got stuck in the E3D filament guide tube. Tried for about 30min to get it out, wouldn’t move either direction… Finally gave up and disassembled the toolhead, removed the filament guide tube, used an ultra-fine point soldering iron tip to melt the expanded end of the filament just inside the tube, then was finally able to push it out. Due to the compact design, re-assembly is a bit like a jig-saw puzzle!

Thanks for the replies and impressions so far guys. Looks like I’ll go for the ITW version since CoParaTech is having a good experience with it. I rarely change my filament type (been using PETG for a long while now) so I really had to do calibration for that filament once and haven’t change it since. (I did spend about a day printing out 20mm cubes to get it within .05 or less). Now I just need to figure out if I want to go with 3mm or change to the 1.75 version.