Better Quality 3D Prints Using MAGIC NUMBERS on ENDER 3, CR-10, A10


Did you know that your 3d printer has a
magic number and if you use that magic number you can get better print quality
I’ll explain it all on today’s Filament Friday. This episode of filament friday is
brought to you by these patreon supporters. I know many people got new
printers for Christmas or they’re just getting started with 3d printing and
they want to do a lot of modifications it’s the fun part, I get it. But before
you do any of that just learn how to use your 3d printer and how it works with
your slicer and with that you want to know your magic number and use it in
your slicer settings. So what is the magic number? Well to understand it
completely we first have to understand how a stepper motor works so let me
explain that and then I’ll get deeper into how you calculate the magic number.
This is a diagram of a very basic stepper motor. It’s got four coils or
four poles and when the center is grounded and one of the coils is
energized it’s going to align the magnet up inside with the coil and that’s going
to be one step. So if we then stop power here and put power here it’s gonna
line up there so that’s the next step so if I do this where I energize each coil
separately I can get four steps out of this guy per revolution that’s how a
basic stepper motor works and on our printers we typically have one point
eight degree movement so these coils, there are multiple coils to give us every one
point eight degrees of alignment. So at one point eight degrees
that gives us 200 steps per revolution and that’s the number we’re going to use
to calculate the magic number because we want to line up with these natural steps.
Now where the stepper drivers come in is they vary the voltage here and here
between two coils and by the difference of those two voltages you can get
multiple steps and that’s how you micro step a stepper motor but we’re not going
to worry about this for the magic number. We want to use these natural steps or
the 200 steps per revolution. So now that we generally understand that
there’s 200 natural steps in a stepper motor how does that relate to the magic
number? Well it all comes down to this threaded rod. The threaded rod will lift
the X carriage based on its pitch so on the Creality machines or even this
GEEETECH machine it lifts 8 millimeters per one revolution so now that we know we
want to stick to the natural steps or 200 steps per rotation, divide that 200
into the 8 millimeters we get zero point zero four millimeters per natural step.
That’s the magic number! And we want to stay on that magic number because then
we’re at the same position relative to each step.
Even if we’re micro stepping we are going to the same micro step every time
so we’re consistent in how we’re moving up and that gives you consistent results
and much better print quality especially on smaller prints where you’re printing
really fine detail. So now that we know our magic number is zero point zero four
we can do variations off of that for the Z height so 0.08, 0.12, 0.16, 0.2, 0.24 0.28 and 0.32. You typically don’t
want to go more than 80 percent of your nozzle so at a 0.4 nozzle, 0.32 is
like the roughest you want to go, that’s pretty rough. So now let’s compare
our magic numbers or our magic layer heights to what Cura offers in its stock settings. From the drop-down menu they
show 0.06 , 0.1, 0.15, 0.2, 0.3 and
a couple of course settings I don’t recommend. 0.2 is the only one
that fits within our magic number. The 0.1 or fine setting should really be
0.12 to match our magic number. Normal 0.16 extra-fine 0.08 and
the extra fast 0.3 should be like 0.28. So I
made my own profile using a 0.12 that way I’m within my magic
numbers and that’s what I use for most of my prints. But let’s compare this. I’m
gonna slice this Marvin keychain at a 0.1, the stock setting and it says
42 minutes to print with a 20% fill. Now I’m just gonna change the layer height
to 0.12 because now I’m in my magic number and it says 35 minutes to print.
I saved 7 minutes on this print but what about quality, are they the same? And here they are next to each other and frankly I can’t tell them apart. I do have some
retraction settings to improve but I can’t tell them apart
I had to mark them on the bottom. They look identical to me yet the 0.12
printed 7 minutes faster than the 0.1 so then I tried my calibration cube and
again I couldn’t tell a difference between the two. They look identical
until I put them under a microscope. Look at the 0.1 layer height. You can see
larger layers and then smaller layers scattered throughout the print and it’s
slightly off. My eye couldn’t pick this up but it’s obviously there because when I
compare it to the 0.12 with the magic number look at how smooth and even the
layers are so this clearly gives you a better print. So the magic numbers do
work! So the magic numbers seem to work although it’s minor but you save time
while getting the same print quality and under the microscope it definitely
showed a difference. And that magic number 0.04 works for all the Creality
machines that I have CR10, CR 10 mini, Ender 3 all the same and the GEEETECH
a10, a20 they all have the same 0.04 so just try that out tell me what you think
see if you see a difference in your prints. If you like what I’m doing here
maybe check out some of the videos that are popping up if you want to help
support the channel patreon is one way or just use the affiliate links in the
description below to buy filament, parts, whatever, it helps a lot and if nothing
else just click on that CHEP logo and subscribe I’ll see you next time right
here at Filment Friday

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