In this article, we will get our Series 1 moving! Confirm that the USB Cable is connected to your computer and the power cable is plugged into the wall. Customers outside the United States should read this article before proceeding. Launch the Pronterface application.
Before beginning your first print, you will need to set the baud rate for the connection. Confirm that your Series 1 is connected via USB to your computer, then highlight the field left of ‘Connect’ and type in ‘230400’ Pronterface will remember this for future connections. If you click the drop down arrow, you will not see 230400 as an option; you must type it in manually.
Pronterface should automatically detect the correct COM port and display it to the right of the box called “Port.” If you have multiple printers or other devices connected, you may need to manually specify the COM port by clicking the drop down menu and selecting the correct one. Keep in mind that windows users may have to follow these steps before connecting. For Mac and Linux users, instead of a COM port, you will see something that looks like the following:
Click ‘Connect.’ The lights on the printer will flash and a ‘Connecting…’ message will appear in the right hand dialog box If the window does not look like the one below, double check that the Baud rate is 230400, then try selecting another port. Mac and Linux users may see a few options on their drop down menu. If you are uncertain which connection works, try all of them. The correction connection will yield the same result shown in the console of the pronterface window pictures below.
To load a GCode file, click the “Load” button. Open the file where you unzipped the Setup Package, then open the Test_Models folder. Select any of the pre-made GCODE files. If you have another GCode file that you want to print, select it and open it.
Note: Pronterface can also open .STL files. It may try to slice the STL files into gcode, but one should avoid using gcode that was created in this way.
After the file is loaded you will see a visualization of it appear in the window as well as some information appear on the right hand command bar. It will give you the dimension boundaries as well as the estimated print duration. We have found this estimate to be incorrect most of the time. The best way to get a good estimation is in KISSlicer just after slicing in a dialogue box above the settings on the right side of the window.
Tip: large Gcode files may take a little while, sometimes as much as a minute to load. You may be able to speed this process up by turning off the visualizations in the Pronterface settings.
When you click print several things should happen:
1) Your printer will move all three axes to its ‘home’ position.
2) It will then move to the front-center of the build surface and pre-heat. You can watch its progress in Pronterface. Check the ‘monitor printer’ box in the top-center part of the Pronterface window.
3) When the printer reaches temp, it will extrude a small amount of filament. CAUTION: THE EXTRUDER IS HOT AND YOU MAY BURN YOURSELF IF YOU TOUCH THE EXTRUDER OR THE EXTRUDED FILAMENT. You can manually wipe this away with tweezers, or it will wipe away on the build surface.
4) The head will move to begin extruding your print. The fan will turn on and off as needed.
Tip: If the fan doesn’t turn on automatically, you can turn it on manually by typing ‘M106 S255’ in the Pronterface command line. To learn more manual commands, visit the Type A Machines community forum.
It’s a good idea to watch your first layer complete before walking away. This is the most critical part of the print and chances are if your first layer is good the rest of the print will be too. The extrusion should spread onto the print surface and strongly adhere to it. It should not be stringy nor should it be crushed into the surface. Your printer is calibrated for correct initial extrusion height during factory quality control, and should not need adjustment out of the box. If you have a problem with extrusion adhesion in the first layer, try this.
You have just started your first 3D print with The Type A Machines Series 1! Time to kick back, relax, and start designing your next 3D object!