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3D PRINTER: Print extruder feed will not move when using the smart controller

By design it will not if the extruder head temperature is too low. Pre-heat the extruder and try again. Do not forget that if your temperature sensor if iffy then it may not work. Simple but catches most people out. You can disable this in the Marlin code. If that does not work check the stepper motors as below..

3D PRINTER: Stepper motor will not move

This can be one of four things: the motor, the code, the motor driver or power. so check the cables, check that you adequate power and that when you disable the motors you can move them by hand, especially on the Z vertical axis. If you have a problem with one motor you can disconnect the motor and check the windings with a multi meter or by applying a small voltage to each of the wires. You will feel the motor jerk.

If the motor is fine then you need to look at the RAMPS board and more than likely the stepper motor driver with the small heatsink on. Make sure this is on properly and swap with with another one to see if it now works.

PRINT QUALITY: Print will not stick to bed

This is one of the most common problems with 3D printing. By far the biggest solution is the extruder tip height when putting down the first layer. If it is too far off the bed, the print will be sausage like and just ley on the bed much like extruding into the air. If it is too close you get splurge and lumps which the extruder will hit on the next pass and pull your print off the bed. You will have to keep trying but I always air for a first layer that is about half as thick as the rest of the layers. Do not change the code, so if you are ping the first layer at 0.5mm, have the physical head with a gap of 0.3mm that way the extrusion will push hard onto the glass.

Other issues are more obvious like the print bed not being level, greasy, not hot enough etc. I find that 60 deg C is good enough for most prints. The final mistake people make is in the object design. Often then there is not enough surface contract so make sure you use some brim which loops of plastic around your object to give it a temporary bigger base.

PRINT QUALITY: 3D Print curls up at edge

Print curling was one of those annoyances that I could not initial solve. However is almost always caused by a combination of two factor. These are cooler air in the region that it is curling combined with high top layer temperature when the area is not that well bonded to the bed. Trust me on this one; the breeze is usually caused by the cooling fan off the RAMPS board. Put up a cardboard shield and watch the difference. If this is the cause then the turned up edge will be the one nearest the RAMPS board of course.

PRINT QUALITY: 3D Print separation

You may find that your print comes apart or the layers seperate or do not appear to have bonded sufficiently. This is caused by a combination of not enough extruder temperature combined with incorrect nozzle height between layers. If you think about it the idea is that hot plastic comes out of the extruder hot enough and close enough to melt the surface of the previous layer, but not too much that it goes all melted and messy. 180-190 Deg Centigrade works fine for PLA.

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