Yesterday first graders started to create their insects that will be coming to life over the next few weeks.
At first, we were going to use Morphi but due to a costly update, we resorted to MakerBot PrintShop and white paper with black markers. In the past, Morphi has been our go to app to have students draw in 2D and switch to 3D but with the new update, we couldn't afford to purchase 60 licenses for the project and installing and deleting the app so different students could export their designs was not worth the trouble.
I'm not new to 3D printing but I am new to this machine. I've spent countless hours fixing the Makerbot but I had high hopes for this newest printer and the possible simplicity of a different machine. After printing several prints, the PLA clogged in the extruder and it wasn't a simple removal. This is when my problems started. Removing the clogged PLA required taking apart the extruder. Now I have filament feeding problems, X axis problems, and Z axis problems.
Prusa support quickly responded when I reached out to them. I also found a Facebook group that was quick to help. But my troubles still exist....
So I've reached back out to Prusa which has been fantastic responding because I recognize my limitations and after spending 5 hours or more trying to troubleshoot, I need to reach out for help. I am extremely thankful for the Facebook group and Prusa support but I think it is time for someone to actually look at the machine besides myself.
Today the NinjaFlex filament arrived and I was ready to create the Lego Tape by Adafruit.
But.... my learning curve is a little steep right now. First I wasn't preparing the machine right. The default NinjaFlex on the Prusa didn't match the printing guidelines that came with the filament. Of course I didn't realize there was a NinjaFlex printing setting at first and if the nozzle isn't heated correctly no filament will come out. The filament is amazingly flexible which provides a little bit of a challenge when loading since I have only used PLA.
Even though I didn't obtain a successful print yet using NinjaFlex, I did learn some pretty valuable things about the new printer. Biggest lesson - Don't walk away when printing with a new filament! I spent a little while peeling off all of the mess from the extruder head. I will try again next week after I research NinjaFlex printing a little more.