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pgreenland

Bed Leveling Calibration Test Object (Parametric)

by pgreenland Nov 15, 2012
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Everyone always says to just stick a piece of paper between the nozzle and bed but I noticed that my prints were just...ok. They had minor defects and I had thought that it was due to the filament, settings, never the leveling bc the piece of paper can't be wrong right! It's everyone's go to method. I printed this and right away saw the differences the squares across the bed. took a paper and adjusted the side where the quality was clearly bad. I also took the nozzle .1 up the Z and moved it across the bed in the X Y direction to eye ball it then did another test, which came out better than the 1st. Repeated the same method and got even better results.

So I know this is old but... when you say check the results, what does that mean? I'm going to be building my first DIY kit this weekend. Wanted to make sure I got off on the right foot. What kind of things would indicate something is wrong and what would those results mean in terms of fixing it?

Hey,

This calibration object was designed to help ensure your print bed is really, really level across its entire surface.

So checking the results would involve looking to see that each of the wafer thin squares printed is complete, nice and smooth, properly adhered to the printer and is complete with its thin but unconnected border.

Depending on the printer, especially if its a DIY kit (I've got a RepRap) you'll likely find it hard to get the bed this level on day one and I wouldn't recommend attempting to adjust based on this design straight away.

I used to be able to get something like this to print but since moving house I've had nothing but problems.

To start with I'd recommend levelling your print bed as per your printer manufacturer's instructions. Then use a slightly thicker first layer, so say you want a fine print with 0.1 or 0.2mm thick layers, make the first layer 0.4mm to help cover any slight variations in how level your bed is.

This is what I do these days, having spent way too long getting the first layer to properly adhere to the printer and not get torn up by the second layer.....I'm sure you'll see all these things once you've got your printer up and running.

I use Slic3r with my printer which has the option for a slightly thicker first layer.

Hope that helps, good luck with the printer!

Thanks,

Phil

Thanks! That’s very helpful. Got my kit today and just put it together! Gonna do a level test thanks to your help!

Thx for this and just a question, what is the purpose of the border around each square? Just an additional skirt?

Hey, Sorry for the slow reply....my printer's been gathering dust recently :-(. I believe I added the border when I was tweaking feed speeds and trying to find a way to get the bed perfectly level. Occasionally the printer would manage to merge the border into the square...four nice clean squares with nice clean borders was always the goal. The border was always much more likely than the square to get picked up by the print head and dragged around if the bed adhesion wasn't good :-(.

Cant seem to see the levels slic3r dose not even see one level.

Hi, you may want to check your layer thickness in Slic3r. I can't from memory remember how thick the calibration object is (I think it's 0.1mm). Slic3r used to select 0.3mm by default, hence for anything less than this it doesn't generate any G-Code. Hope this solves your issue. Phil

I want to extend my thanks to the folks who have put calibration prints up on this site. I tried to ask the support team at Lulzbot for just such prints and was told that "We are a 3D print company not a 2D print company and do not have such files for download." Sheeeeesh! I just wanted to test my level by printing a "first layer" to check level.

Thanks! Happy to help. :-)

would this also work for circular beds?

Hey RamboMaker,

Sorry for the slow reply.

I don't see why not, although it may be a bit tricky setting it up for a round bed.

The original idea was to print a series of squares of minimal thickness, across the whole bed area. Helping to ensure the first layer correctly adhered to the bed, proving the bed is (relatively) level at the same time.

Hope that helps,

Phil

Cant seem to get to print in Cura :(

Hey, apologies for taking a while to get back to you. I'm not familiar with Cura I'm afraid. However if it's similar to Slicr you may want to compare your layer thickness with the model. I've found that Slicer won't write any g-code if the object doesn't reach it's layer thickness before, which makes sense :-)

One of the best methods I have seen for bed leveling. Big thumbs up, and thank you for making my life easier.

This is awesome! It's being rotated in as my standard bed-leveling model. Might remix slightly to make a Customizer-compatible version to allow for specifying height (for leveling at different layer heights) and bed dimensions.

Thanks for this!

thanks :) This is the best calibration model that i've used

This is a great tool. Thanks for the share

I found this extremely useful to level my print bed.
I just start the print and while it's filling out one of the squares, I keep adjusting the nearest screw until the layer is flat and clean.
Takes around 15 minutes for the whole thing, but I found this to be the most precise way to get my bed level and the only way to get it perfectly right :)

Thanks a lot for that.

I cant print this dunno why :| My printer does the autolevel and then just stops... like if there was nothing to print! :| But i can print other objects, can someone help me out please?

Hi, You might want to check the layer height settings on your printer's slicing software. The calibration object is deliberately very thin (0.1mm) so a layer height greater than this will likely result in nothing being printed. I believe I had exactly the same problem when I first tried printing it. :-) Good luck!, Phil

Yeah .... I realised that after a good night sleep LOL was too tired... and i'm a bit dumb too LOL Thanks a lot man =)

This might be good to combine with printing anything - so that the printer gets to warm up on a thin shape somewhere other than the main piece. 

That's a good point Nath, might try that sometime.