@jaimieb said in CR6 best practices:
Hi - I am new to home 3D printing (but experienced with pro Stratasys systems).
Luckily the same FDM/FFF principles apply, so other than not having the printer do a lot of things for you, the actual processes are practically the same.
Can anyone point me and others as to how to actually use this printer successfully and consistently?
I've been having good success using the standard profiles in Cura for slicing settings (tweaking as approrpiate to the model of course. here, again, expreience with professional 3d printing systems is 100% transferrable). I've only had a handful of failed prints. Remember that with hobbyist grade printers like these, you'll always have to expect some failed prints. Settings are highly dependant on the individual model being printed, and you should look at what caused that particular print to fail and adjust settings accordingly.
How to prepare the glass base before each print (or clean up after a print)? (There is contradictory info from Creality about this - e.g. alcohol or no? )
Since there IS contradictory info on this, I'd err on the safe side and avoid using alcohol. Soap and warm water should be enough to get any grease or dust from the bed that'd hinder adhesion.
What is the best practice after a print? Do you just leave the filament in the nozzle?
If you're using the default ending Gcode, it'll retract the filament while it moves the hotend away from the print, so it should at that point be beyond the heat break and not contribute to clogging things up. Our apartment needs 24/7 humidifying, making our room air kind of humid, so personally I like to remove any filament from the printer whenever it's not in use and store it away in it's dry storage, so I always pop the roll of the printer. This is more down to personal preference, though. If you're worried about clogging the nozzle, but want to leave the spool on the printer, just pull it back a small amount, so that you see the end inside the bowden tube for instance, that way you'll know it's out of the hotend, but you don't have to go through feeding it through the sensor and into the extruder the next time.
Or do you purge it each time, and if so how? The display button to feed filament does not seem to work, so how best to remove filament each time?
I honestly never used the feed buttons so had no idea they don't work. This, again, should be almost completely similar to a professional FDM system. To purge, you heat up the hotend to a temperature at or some amount higher than the printing temperature for the material, then manually push some filament through the hotend, then fairly quickly but steadily retract it out (quickly enough to hopefully get most of it out of the nozzle, but not too quick to stretch the hot part of the filament to separate, leaving a glob of it in the nozzle). To manually move the filament you'll obviously need to disengage the extruders tension arm.
Are you supposed to do a cooldown with the fan or can just switch it off?
The part cooling fan doesn't do much to cool the bed, and technically shouldn't really cool the hotend either. But the hotend has it's own fan, and I'd let that cool the hotend to some reasonable temperatuer before shutting the printer off.
Personally I tend to leave the printer on until it's fully cool, just to monitor it as it goes and also to see when it's cool enough to try and remove the print from the bed, but again this is just a personal preference of mine.
I was not aware that I needed infinite troubleshooting time and/or ample experience with DIY-style equipment to use this machine.
You need a DIY mindset to work with hobbyist/DIY tools, the only way around that is to move to prosumer or professional equipment, unfortunately. There's a reason why an Ender 3 is $180, an Ultimaker is several thousands and a Stratasys is tens of thousands.