Extruder Gear Slipping Sometimes

Hey folks!

I just took my Ender 3 Pro out of storage after 1.5 years of being in storage (purchased in 2021) and I am trying to get her up an running again, and I am running into a strange issue:

When I start my prints, everything looks great for the first few minutes until I use enough filament such that the extruder needs to rotate the wheel of filament on the spool to get some more slack in the filament line. At this point the extruder gear just starts to slip on the filament (instead of pulling on the filament and turning the filament wheel). It basically seems like the extruder is strong enough to feed filament when there is slack in the filament line but when it also needs to tug on the wheel to get it to spin it is not strong enough.

I initially thought this was a nozzle issue so I took apart the entire hot end and checked the PTFE tube and replaced the nozzle, so I don’t think there is an issue there. I am most suspicious of the extruder assembly, as it seems like there is not enough tension on the gear or the gear teeth are not sharp/clean enough.

I thought I would post here to see if this is a common issue / see if there is a simple fix for this. Cheers!

After some more research it looks like the extruder tensioning arm cracking is a pretty common issue on the stock extruder. After taking a closer look it seems like this may be my issue as well.

I ordered an aluminum extruder assembly and will install it tomorrow to see if that resolves my issue :slight_smile:

Hello @mooshoomatt …! :wave:

Welcome to the Creality Forum…! Creality

Glad you found the problem there… :+1:

Just curious does your extruder look like this…

Yes, it looks identical to the extruder in your attached photo. Why do you ask? :smiley:

The plastic arms are prone to cracking and it isn’t an equal pressure on the filament as it is driven on one gear only. At the very least upgrade it to a dual gear. Creality Sprite upgrade or MicroSwiss Micro Swiss All Metal Hotend Kit for Ender 3 / CR10 Printers — Microswiss Online Store