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How to Print

Disclaimer: If you are ever unsure of anything during this process PLEASE reach out to someone. We would much rather take the 5 minutes to help with a honest question. Then spend potentially hours fixing a simple mistake.
Help can be found at #3d_Printing Slack Channel if no one is in the space.

Slicer

We use Lulzbot Cura for the Taz 6 and Robo3d Printers.
We also use PrusaSlicer for the Prusa Mini+.
There is a computer setup near the 3D printers that is preconfigured with all the software you need to print on our printers running Ubuntu.
Each 3D Printer at RCL has a raspberry pi running Octoprint on it. The URL for accessing the Octoprint server is located on that printers' wiki page. The login info will be physically located near the printer itself.

Preparing the Printer

You should always make sure the build plate (print bed) is clean. Even if you do not see any debris, you should always wipe down the build plate. Oils from fingers, dust, and other contaminants can get on the bed, and cause prints to not stick and fail.
Soap and Water is the simplest most effective way to remove any of those contaminants. You can simply put a little bit onto a paper towel and rub the build plate. This isn't a kitchen sink. Use light force to clean the surface and make sure it is dry once done.
  1. 1.
    load a .STL onto the printer computer
  2. 2.
    Insert a USB Flash Drive into the printer computer
  3. 3.
    Open up PrusaSlicer
  4. 4.
    Configure your job and slice the model
    1. 1.
      See the PrusaSlicer Manual for a quick reference
  5. 5.
    Click the export GCode and save it to the USB Flash Drive
    1. 1.
      Note: You may have to say it to documents first and then drag it to the USB Flash Drive
  6. 6.
    Eject the USB Flash Drive from the computer and insert the USB Flash Drive into the printer
    1. 1.
      The USB Port is located on the right side of the printer next to the power switch
  7. 7.
    The print should show up automatically on the display and allow you to use the black dial to click print.
  8. 8.
    IMPORTANT! Be sure to watch the printer closely when it starts.
    1. 1.
      Make sure it homes and auto levels without issue
      1. 1.
        The Prusa Mini does this in a couple cycles
    2. 2.
      Make sure the first few layers are put down without issue
    3. 3.
      If there is any issue whatsoever, immediately turn the printer off.
For more info on the Prusa Mini view the Prusa Mini Wiki Page
  1. 1.
    load an .STL file onto the printer computer
  2. 2.
    Open up Lulzbot Cura
  3. 3.
    Ensure you have the correct printer selected at the top
  4. 4.
    Configure your job and slice the model
  5. 5.
    Open up the Octoprint URL in your web browser and login to Octoprint
  6. 6.
    click "Upload GCode" and select your gcode file.
  7. 7.
    click "Print"
  8. 8.
    IMPORTANT! Be sure to watch the printer closely when it starts.
    1. 1.
      Make sure it homes and auto levels without issue
    2. 2.
      Make sure the first few layers are put down without issue
    3. 3.
      If there is any issue whatsoever, immediately turn the printer off.
  9. 9.
    Once the first few layers are completed without issue, feel free to leave the printer and watch it remotely via the Octoprint URL.
    1. 1.
      If you see any issues mid-print, please stop the print remotely via the Octoprint UI.