3D Printer Oopsie

Just a couple days after my last post about 3D printing, the library 3D printer stopped printing.

No, it wasn't out of filament. The first thing I checked was for an empty spool or broken filament in the feed system. Nope. In fact, I couldn't extract the filament from the print head at all.


I looked up the info from Dremel to disassemble the feed mechanism to try a more in-depth fix. That didn't help, either. Something was seriously screwed up. The machine got sent off to the technology guy, Mr. N, who handles this stuff. He ordered a new hot end and extrusion nozzle in anticipation of super-serious fixage. That turned out to be necessary.

Image credit

The picture above is not a Dremel, but it does show the metal block which heats the nozzle and melts the filament. It's the thing under the fan with wires leading into it. The Dremel hides all that behind a plastic housing with a logo. Not as illustrative at all.

So, in the Dremel, there was an obvious problem when Mr. N got it all apart and found its version of that metal block. It was coated with scorched globs of plastic that had oozed out of somewhere it shouldn't. Oopsie! It turns out this part had been used well in excess of its anticipated lifespan. We were at about 140% of the recommended replacement interval. Double-oopsie!

But none of that is my job responsibility, and the only necessary fix was part replacement. It seems to be working fine now. So not that much of an oopsie.

Anyway, I went back to the patron print that got interrupted by the print head failure a couple weeks back, and it was going well when I left for the day. It wasn't supposed to take that long, but something is screwy with the time estimation for prints, too. Yet another oopsie! I'll see tomorrow whether anything else went all Murphy's Law on me.

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