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5 Ways To Control Oozing With Large Format 3D Prints

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Whether you are 3D printing multiple parts or just one object, the printer nozzle will stop briefly upon printing certain features: such as changing layers, moving between the gaps in the print and support structures, etc. Anytime this brief stop happens, the nozzle may push out a small amount of material, leaving a thin string in between the gaps of your print. If you notice any thin strings on your prints, then you have an “oozing” problem.

For many people, the quickest way to deal with oozing is cleaning it up after the print is done; however, there are several tweaks you can make in your print model to avoid oozing in the first place.
In this blog, we are going to share our top 5 tricks to get rid of oozing on your print using the Simplify 3Dsoftware. Note this is not an exhaustive list, as some settings can be used in conjunction with others to achieve a different result.

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1. Lower Nozzle Temperature
Adjusting the nozzle temperature is a simple yet very effective way to control oozing on your print. In many cases, oozing can be greatly diminished just by running the nozzle temperature slightly lower. It doesn’t have to be a drastic temperature reduction, just 5-10 degrees can make the difference between a successful or failed print.
Take the 3D Platform PLA filament as an example, the suggested extruder temperature is around 195° – 210°C. If you are experiencing some oozing on the prints, adjust the nozzle temperature to 190° – 195°C. This should significantly reduce the oozing.

2. Adjust Retraction Distance

Retraction distance is the distance the filament is pulled up into the hot end (away from the heater) to keep the material from oozing out of the nozzle. This comes into play anytime there is a gap in printing. The retraction distance is dependent on the type of material that is being used. Most often retraction distances range from .5 mm to around 2.50 mm. Printing two parts with a distance between them is often a great way to dial in your retraction distance. Simply start low with your retraction distance and increase as needed.

3. Extra Restart Distance
This is used in conjunction with the retraction distance. With your extra restart distance set to 0, the retraction will move the same distance positive and negative. However, using the extra restart distance feature you can affect how much material is being extruded following a retraction.

For instance, inserting a positive value will result in more material being extruded, while a negative value will result in less. The extra restart distance is added to the retraction distance. As an example, if I had a retraction distance of 2 mm and an extra restart of .5 mm, that would tell the machine to pull the filament back(negative) 2.25 mm and forward (positive) 2.50 mm. This would be helpful if you experienced a skipped extrusion following the retraction.

 

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4. Adjust Retraction speed
Within the Simplify3D software we can adjust the speed at which the material is retracted. This function is helpful when printing with different materials. For instance, PLA can be retracted very rapidly, but a flexible filament such as the NinjaFlex or 3DP Flex would need to be retracted much slower. Speed isn’t a setting that will be changed frequently. Once you find a speed that works, it typically will stay the same.

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  1. 5. Use Nozzle Wipe FeatureJust as the name suggests this will wipe the nozzle on the part. It is particularly helpful because many times when a retraction is performed not all the material will be retracted. The un-retracted filament can leave a blob of molten material on the part. However, using the nozzle wipe feature will deposit that material during the retraction to avoid unwanted material oozing. The default distance is typically 5 mm, but this can be adjusted as needed. For smaller parts, a smaller distance is recommended.
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For more information and tips visit us at https://3dplatform.com/ and don’t forget to follow us on TwitterFacebook and LinkedIn. And as always, if you have any questions about 3D printing or our printers, please contact marketing@3dplatform.com and we will be happy to assist you.

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