What could .1 mm hurt? Alot!

Since I have my Geeetech A10 back to running correctly and it is working great with PLA, I thought I would give PETG a spin.

OMG! It is back to stuttering extruder and non-bonding layers!

I am running a new PETG spool at the lower temp range so up it to 260 C and see if that is the problem. Nope.

Lets check the settings for the umpteenth time. Why is the nozzle size set to .5 mm? Strange!
Set the nozzle size back to .4 mm.

Perfect print! Lesson learned, size does matter!

I am really amazed at how .1 mm nozzle size can change the feed algorithm enough to cause issues. This makes me more aware of how minor settings can effect print quality.


What could a 20% less change in volume mean to a 3D printer. :wink: As I’ve said a thousand times, it’s all about calibration and having the settings correct for the machine, material and design. 3D printers are not microwave ovens.


@dougl I think you are not quite right here. I don’t think that merely setting the nozzle width larger than true directly changes the amount of plastic extruded, and in particular wouldn’t cause less plastic to be extruded. I believe it’s more likely that it’s changing other derived parameters and causing it to try to lay down layers that are too thick to be effectively placed with the thinner nozzle.

That’s kind of over the top. :frowning:


I think @mcdanlj is right.

First, a diameter change from 0.4 to 0.5mm isn’t a 20% change in volume, the nozzle tip area difference is
Which is closer to a 41% difference!

Second, what is expected is that you have a higher filament flow through a wider opening, so the slicer is pushing more filament to the hotend. But it’s quite likely that you’re running into flow limitations of the 0.4mm nozzle, which causes your extruder to then skip steps and under extrude.

Microwave ovens have a significantly harder unification on the controls implementation, even if they are functionally less complicated to use… So an apt comparison, if not exactly helpful. A microwave only does one thing, where a printer makes whatever design you can imagine :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


ah, that does sound right, ie it’d be trying to putt down more plastic. The comment about “non bonding layers” had me jump to too little extrusion. But I would guess his extruder “stuttering” was extruder skipping and putting down the wrong amounts.

It is something I’ve said for about a decade about 3D printing once I started to grok what it takes to make a decent part. It was my way of saying these things are complicated. Was not trying to diss him in any way.


The “under extruding” would only happen if he took defaults for extrusion widths and those are calculated based on hotend diameter. I don’t use defaults and forgot that many do. If that situation happened on my machine it would be over extruding and I’d likely not have the same results as he had. My widths on one .4mm nozzle machine is set to .45mm and it’s likely his width was calculated to over .50mm so while I might have experienced extruder skipping the extrusions would have been over extruded so first layer and subsequent layers would have not been laminating but instead quite uneven and way out of size as plastic pushed things out of spec.

That never even entered my mind since I hardly ever work with areas of circles. So thanks for that.

I’d love to hear a better generalization of a common household device which is expected to be easy to use, even if complicated under the hood, and the complexities of 3D printing. I started in 2013 building a RepRap(MiniKossel) 3D printer and from that time forward it became understood that while the press made these out to be fit for every home, they were far more complex because of the variations in designs(overhangs, bridging, size, etc) and then there’s the variation in filament densities due to pigment and other manufacturing choices and then the fact that these machines operate at sub-millimeter accuracy but are built of pretty delicate materials. I used the microwave because most recognize and use the popcorn button or just put any food in it and pick a cook time.
I used to run into lots of geeks at the early 3D printer meetups and training classes but as the years passed it became more of the less-techie types.

I really shouldn’t have posted the ‘it’s not a microwave’ comment since most of us know @HalfNormal is not a NOOB and he is well aware of that fact already. Should have posted something like, ‘ya, too many knobs on these things need tweaking to get good results’. I need to be outlawed from doing drive-by postings.

Hehe I was also picking up on the joke of the microwave. A similarly complex appliance that just works, in general, would be a home internet router, I feel.

Modern washing machines also have incredibly complex mechanisms nowadays… But because of the idea that men don’t do laundry, greens tend to not look at those in detail or with as much respect as they deserve, imo.

That’s exactly what I built as my first machine in 2014 as well!

Now I just make the deltas bigger :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Filaments today are much better than they were back in those times, too. So some of the knowledge of how to tweak and fine tune profiles has changed too.


In another thread I made this comment;

“I am not sure how the average person is able to keep these printers running when they start to act up.”

In which @mcdanlj replied;

They (3D printers) are really not an every consumer product yet and I’m not really sure they ever really will be.
And all honesty, computers are not really there either. They’re great when they’re working perfectly but when they’re not, an expert has to be called to see where things have gone awry. Most people make a mess of things when trying to fix it themselves with all the bogus programs that are out there.


I spent weeks reading about the different RepRap machines and the fact that the delta(mini kossel) used about 50% fewer parts AND those parts were in triplicate just seemed like the thing to do. But because I needed a reason to make the machine, a 6.5" coffee grinder plate, I had to scale the MK up and nobody had done that back then. I made the machine fit 12" carbon fiber rods which was too large for 1515 extrusion. I tried 3D printed carriages(slip fit on nylon) because linear rails were about $100ea at the time. After 6 months of figuring out issues due to carriage binding(diff coefficient of expansion-PLA vs aluminum) I found some linear rails for ~$150 for 3 and redesigned the upper supports. Learned a ton about Slic3r and the various settings. And remember, calibration was manual back then. The Yahoo Group for 3D delta printers was my home for a couple of years.
That large MK made parts for a standar MK and once I validated that worked, I printed parts and shipped them out for 5 others( pay it forward plan ). The delta machines are just a joy to watch too.

in 2020 I was making PPE and went through a few rolls of PLA I’d purchased in bulk from MicroCenter.com and purchased the same brand and style only to find out it was junk and only my slow salvage MakerBot Rep2 could print it reasonably. I had 3 machines running 10hr/day so finding their fastest speed was critical and the parts had to be near perfect. I’ve settled on HatchBox and they seem to be quite consistent.


Yes not all filament makers are equal but they are generally better than 5 years ago.

I was doing the same with PPE printing. I had a decent supply of good enough filament. I focused on making the print trays as close to 24 hours a piece as I could. Modified the design we had to be able to stack them and print them as high as the printer would go. (Basically adding a bunch of 0.4mm cylinders for 3 layers along the top ridge).

That was an interesting time.