Sunday, November 16, 2008

A Host of Problems

Decided that the 0.8.3 host wasn't versitile enough. Tried downloading the latest source. Messed around with Eclipse and SVN. Eventually got a compile. Ended up deleting the old properties file and letting the host build a new one. The properties had changed so much, they didn't really apply anymore. Played with the values until I got it more or less printing.

Ran into difficulty with orientation. Opened the minimug object and, as usual, rotated it on the X axis to get it upright (ctrl-X). Started the print and got what looks like a vertical slice through the center of the model (tapered square-ish U shape). The print seemed to be centered on the warmup segment as well.

Set RepRap_Machine to Simulator to save on filament. Still got the same behavior. A lot easier to see using the simulator. The simulation starts with a vertical slice through the middle and works its way across to one edge. After it finished, Hit Print again and it printed correctly. WTF! Restarted the app, loaded minimug again and got the sideways print. Second print came out right, though.

Restarted and loaded the file again. Played with the 3D window a bit to see if the model was really on the grid and not intersecting it. Hit Print and this time the first print came out right. Again, WTF!

Half an hour of fiddling later figured it out: The model prints incorrectly only when it's selected. As long as you deselect the model first, you're fine. Mentioned this to Adrian. Fixed now.

Set up the properties to avoid lifting the head between segments. Also zeroed any extruder delays. Turned on the foundation parameters (raft).

Tried printing a RepRap ring. Foundation printed OK. Partway through the first "real" layer, the head homes, sits there for a bit, then picks up where it left off. But the extruder motor stays off for the remainder of the layer.

Checked to make sure I had all the pause and wipe parameters off. Kept doing this periodically. Happened to look at the screen at the right time and noticed the heater warmup dialog pop up. Turns out the head was cooling off, which caused the warmup routine to kick in, which apparently caused the extruder motor to stop for the rest of the layer.

Reason the warmup routine kicked in is that, somewhere in the past few days, I messed up Extruder0_hm, causing it to have trouble maintaining its working temperature. Set the value correctly. Will try again tomorrow.

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