Extrusion Flow Check


Problem:

  • Suspected plastic extrusion error

 

Important:

The plastic nozzle and extruded plastic will be hot during this test. Be careful not to touch the nozzle or extruded plastic with your bare hand. Use the included tweezers to handle the plastic.

 

 

Potential Plastic Extrusion Problem

The purpose of this test is to determine how well the Plastic extrusion system is performing. The test extrudes a known amount of of Plastic. Based on the behavior of the machine during the test and the mass of this extrusion, you can determine if you're having extrusion problems.

Task: Complete the following steps as directed.

  1. Select "Extrusion Flow Check" from the "Utilities" -> "Maintenance" menu on the screen of your printer.
  2. Follow the prompts on the screen to begin the test.
  3. Press "Continue" on the screen to continue the test when then nozzle reaches a high enough temperature.
  4. Watch to ensure the printer extrudes plastic to purge the system. Make sure the printer retracts and pauses for two seconds after it finishes purging.
  5. Remove the extruded plastic from the nozzle while the printer is paused.
  6. As the plastic starts to extrude again, listen for clicking in the plastic extruder. If you notice clicking or the wheel jerking backwards, please see the sections below.
  7. Use tweezers to catch the plastic that is extruded by the printer. This is the test sample that will be weighed.
  8. When the printer finishes extruding, carefully collect all of the extruded plastic with the tweezers.
  9. Weigh the second plastic flow on a balance that has at least 1mg accuracy. If the reading is less than 0.1800 grams, please see the sections below.

 

Reason for Failure: There are two possible signs of failure for this test.

  • Failure to extrude plastic or clicking of the extruder during the test can indicate that the plastic you are using has been exposed to water. Generally, in this case, the plastic is wet from extended exposure to air. This is generally caused by the dry box being opened for prolonged periods of time or not being closed properly.

  • Underextrusion of the test part can indicate that there is plastic caught in the extruder or that the spool inside your dry box is tangled.

 

Solutions:

  • If you suspect that your plastic is more than slightly damp, you will have to replace the spool. In addition, check your dry box to ensure that it is able to seal properly. If your dry box cannot seal properly, consider investing in a new one. Avoid exposing the new plastic to air for more than 30 seconds at a time.

  • If you suspect that plastic is jammed in the extruder, see Troubleshooting a Jammed Extruder.

  • If you suspect that the plastic is tangled in the dry box, open the box and inspect the spool. If the tangle is able to be easily resolved, try to untangle it. If the spool is unable to be untangled within about a minute, it will likely absorb too much water to be used before it is able to be untangled. In this case, replace the spool.