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Extruder Fail Guide- 3D Printing

*CLICK* *CLICK* “Why is my motor clicking?”, was the first thing I thought when my machine stopped pushing material. “Is the material jammed?”, so I removed the filament and cut it down all the way to the extruder motor. But when I reloaded the machine….. *CLICK* *CLICK*. Not good… so then I began thinking: “well, maybe the boden tube has been jammed?” So I replaced the boden tube, but the problem persisted.

What could be the issue? I began completely disassembling the hot end to look for any jammed material or foreign object but couldn’t find anything. So to be safe I replaced the nozzle, but still to no avail. By this time I was thinking my motor went out and I needed to replace it. As I was removing the motor I noticed my plastic filament guide/tensioner for the motor itself has been used so much that the angle the filament was fed at caused the plastic to erode, causing a large amount of friction. It almost completely stopped the motor from feeding any material through.

I knew, after replacing the part with a new aluminum one, that I should have nearly no issues with the guide again. But a simple understanding of the machine is an easy way to diagnose the problem and fix them.

The filament wouldn’t go through the machine and the reel had nearly no tension, which told me the problem was with the machine itself. Replacing the boden tube along with the nozzle are cheap easy fixes to eliminate any issues with that. If those are okay, only your extruder motor and guides are left to diagnose. Simply looking at one the other should be clear if they are the issue or not.

3D printers are very intricate and precise machines, but they are not rockets. They are easy to become comfortable with, and almost everyone can own one and work on it themselves. This gives people the freedom they deserve to produce anything they desire.

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