Firmware Documentation and Enhancment Requests

(edited 8-18-17)

As I am getting use to the machine a few thing are missing.

  • Documentation for the settings // DONE

  • Print time on the display

  • Z Reset Position: Needs to have control down to at least two decimal points (xxx.xx) Once platform is leveled having the ability to tune the spacing to the vat wouldn’t always require tearing off the side of printer.

  • Pause print and raise build plate for inspection and have the option to resume the print “This would be my number one request”

  • Option to jog built plate and maybe platform motor

  • Home the vat platform on each print (I’ve seen instances where it is not in the proper position for the start of the next print without power cycling the printer)

  • A home option with out needing to reboot printer

DONE // Is there a list of currently supported G and M codes?

This is a start I’ll add things as I think of them. I just wanted to get this started for consideration.

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will do the documentation shortly, feature requests, I will share with the team and get back.

on the “not the proper location for the start of the print” can you describe it in more detail?

Gcode, we support very minimal gcode and none of the Mcode for laser/galvo control.

G1/G0 for movement. F for Speed. Any G0 or G1 command with E fires the laser, does not matter what values trails the E. G1/G0 with Z moves the layer.
That is it.

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If you stop a print when the vat is peeling it will apply the vat peel for stopping the print and over travel, lose steps and not return to the proper position (home) for the next print. Starting a new print does not re-home the vat.
That was one of the things I showed in the video link I sent you.

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another suggestion for the firmware would be for it to print the first layers (maybe 5 or 10), then raise the platform about 5 cm and pause. This way, we could inspect if the first layers stuck to the build platform.
then have a resume command, just a single push on the button, to resume printing.

I think that would be nicer than having to wait for around 100 layers (50 micron) to print to be able to see if there is something on the build plate?

Remaining time would be nice to have in the display

Thanks!

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another suggestion for the firmware would be for it to print the first layers (maybe 5 or 10), then raise the platform about 5 cm and pause. This way, we could inspect if the first layers stuck to the build platform.
then have a resume command, just a single push on the button, to resume printing.

Yes this would be a GREAT feature !. My Form-2 at work does this. I did not realize why it does this until I read your request here :slight_smile:
Also for the other requests for pause-retract then start could be useful for those wanting to experiment with changing resin color during a print maybe ? or other R&D things.

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I am not sure what you meant by “retract”, do you mean raise the plate?

please keep the feedback coming. We are sweeping out the bugs first before adding any new features.
Please email us back if you have any problems with SD card reading. Any large important print would be best done after a deep format of the SD card.

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Yes, raise the build plate enough to see if everything is going good with the print and then have the option to resume printing.

Yes, Retract means to raise the plate. That way we could look under and see if first layers are attaching properly.

Maybe instead of automatically doing this. Just create a way to select in the menu and manually do this when we want.

That’s what I would want. At this point in time this would be more important than any of the bugs I have run into.

probably easier to implement to do this automatically every print, rather than a manual way.
Also, every time you hit buttons and so on, there will be movement in the printer, so an automatic way, and then, if layers adhere properly, just once push the button to give the ok to resume makes the least movements on the machine.

If you manually select this while its printing, layer shifting could easily happen, I think. We are talking about super fine details, so I want to disturb the printer as little as possible.

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Do you have any estimated time line for firmware and setting documentation?

i have the documentation up this weekend

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Thanks for the settings documentation.

Do you have any timeline for firmware updates or for enhancement request? I have updated and clarified some of my request from my previous post starting the topic.

the whole team is pretty locked in with production and making sure firmware running stable on the electronics. don’t have timeline for the features. but OSX fix is top of the list.

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I’ve added the following to my topic heading post. Someone else mentioned this as well but I couldn’t find it in the forum, I think it’s on Facebook.

  • Z Reset Position: Needs to have control down to at least two decimal points (xxx.xx) Once platform is leveled having the ability to tune the spacing to the vat wouldn’t always require tearing off the side of printer.
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Another suggestion for the firmware:

when printing two different files, one after the other (i.e. without powering down the printer), after starting the second print, while the plate lowers down, the info of the previous file (layers, etc.) are shown, and only before the print actually starts (i.e. when the laser fires) the correct actual infos are shown.

This is surely not a terrible problem, but can sometimes be misleading (making me think I selected the wrong file…).

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Here is another firmware request. I was at the Milwaukee Maker Faire and ran across a Formlabs Form1 and was noticing the peel speed for their flexible resin was really slooooow for the first layers and for other resins I was told are faster depending on how thick or thin they are. That got me thinking that the Moai should have a adjustable peel speed profile.

Maybe have a starting peel speed for a given Z range to increase the stability of the build platform in the first 1mm or 2mm when the suction forces moving the platform around are the greatest. Then speeds could be increased to reduce print times. 3 ranges might be nice but 2 would work.

Another thing I noticed was after it was in to the print farther the peel speed was slower than the reset for the next layer but the peel was faster than the first layers.

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I agree with this! would be a good feature.

Also it would be nice to adjust the “settle” time before the laser starts again. Sometimes it seems the laser starts faster than the time it takes for the resin to settle down after a peel move. I would not mind a 1-2 second pause longer per layer.

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You know I’ve had that thought as well.

I’m not sure and I haven’t changed it yet, but I think that might be the Smooth setting (see link below). Maybe Mark can further clarify that and leave it in the firmware for further testing.

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Here is a follow up video for my previous firmware request.

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