I’m new to 3D printing but when I get into something I tend to jump in with both feet. I wanted a machine with large print volume that was multifunction capable and the snap maker was a really good fit for that but I also wanted a purposely designed 3D printer as well on the chance that the quality of print is not as good on a multi-function machine (Jack of all trades is a master of none). So I bought the SM A350T and the Ender 3 S1 Pro. I’ve had both machines running side by side for a little while now and there are definitely things I like more about the SM. Overall build quality feels exceptional on the SM compared to the S1, but the print quality was consistently better on the S1. On a whim, and because I wanted the ability to print any material, I decided to purchase a $10 kit of five tungsten nozzles in .4 mm for both machines.
Now on to my findings…
Using the stock settings and nozzles for both machines I got consistently better, cleaner, and stronger prints with the ender. Initially I thought this was a filament problem so I swapped the filaments between machines and found that the quality did not follow the filament. I am using the supplied filament from the SM and the cheapest filament I could find on Amazon in a 1 kg roll (intentionally keeping the testing cheap, I know cheap filament has its issues). Whether using the cheap crappy filament from Amazon or the sample roll, the Ender just consistently printed better.
The big change came when I swapped out the nozzle on the sm. After doing this, the machines printed equally. Consistently equally to the point that I was incredibly surprised how bad the original nozzle seemed to have been performing with the sm. I was just curious if anyone else has seen similar poor performance on the stock nozzle from the SM. When you have a machine that is at this price point and seems to be so well engineered and well put together it’s really disappointing to have mediocre quality prints when compared to a much cheaper machine. Initially I had pretty severe buyers remorse for the snapmaker, but after the nozzle swap I am very happy with this machine.
How I ended up at the nozzle swap…
I spent quite some time after the initial stock settings tests playing with the settings in luban to try and get the print quality out to what I expected out of this machine and could not get a consistent good quality print. The problems were not consistent either. At times I would have stringing, others I would have zits, waves, over extrusion / under extrusion, occasionally I would have thin layers that just did not make sense, as well as poor infill performance, and poor layer adhesion. Essentially it seemed like I was having every problem you could have at random when no variables changed. The thing that I found was that the problems were not consistent and did not always respond to the expected troubleshooting steps to address them. I would get things dialed in one day, come back the next with the same settings and have a different issue. The nozzle change was literally just a hail Mary because I had swapped filaments, changed temperatures, adjusted layer heights/widths, retraction settings, extruder calibration, bed leveling, z offsets, etc. Nothing seemed to consistently improve the performance until the nozzle swap.
And which nozzle you bought for the SM? I would like to try it too, bc it seems like that some people not 100% happy about the printing and the reason was always the nozzle. Its my first 3D printer so I dont know which quality would be possible to make with a 3D printer. So thats why I would like to try it too
I had the material they were made from wrong, they are hardened steel but they are the Mudder hardened steel .4mm MK8 nozzles on Amazon. I don’t exactly recommend them yet as I haven’t got much run time on them and I haven’t put anything abrasive through them yet either.
That said, the print quality was instantly better and there are many many options when it comes to hardened nozzles. Just be sure to pick one that is well reviewed and is a MK8.
If you’re less concerned about money a diamondback, ruby, or any big name brand nozzle in MK8 style will work.
I am very interested in this nozzle. I would like to see a photo to compare the printing results, do you have one?
Unfortunately no. The two machines required an overhaul of my office to free up desk space once I decided to keep them both. Again, I would not endorse them as I just have not used them enough to validate them. Especially given that I intend to use abrasive material through them. These are the cheapest steel nozzles to be found on Amazon. If the gamble is worth 8-10 dollars and the time to swap the nozzle, go for it. You won’t be out much if you don’t like them, but again… I bought these out of desperation when all else had failed. This was the lady thing I was going to swap before sending the SM back.
What I am interested in is how much the print quality improved before and after the SM2.0 nozzles were replaced. I would have liked to see the comparison results for this.
One question, did you test the slicer using the same one for Ender and SM?
I read that SM used Luban.
I tried using luban for the SM as yes, that is their preferred software. Eventually I used cura for both just to see if it made a difference. It did not. Interestingly, using the Ender cura defaults with the stock nozzle for the SM produced a pretty decent result. Until it didn’t. Lol. I will upload my latest print with the steel nozzle just for comparison once it is done. It’s using the Amazon filament though. Again, I feel the need to stress again… I love both my machines now. I am going to crack into the other SM functions soon, as the laser engraving is a big reason why I purchased it and the ender is certainly a very capable machine in its own right. In bed now but here is the SM with the default cura settings for an ender. I’ll find a couple of the benchys I printed off with the stock nozzle to compare as well.
I looked at a cheap nozzle I bought on Amazon with a microscope.
The holes are not very clean and circular, and burrs can be seen. I heard that good quality nozzles have a nice circular shape and good printing quality.
Also, I heard that copper nozzles are recommended if hardness is not necessary because steel nozzles are not efficient in heat conduction.
I ordered the nozzles from Aliexpress and will compare the print quality when I receive them.
I think you mean brass, not copper.
You’ll get no argument from me that the cheap stuff from Amazon is anything but that. Cheap. I have a hard time believing things from AliExpress (China owns this company) are going to be much better though. This does make my point all the more frustrating because in my opinion, the stock nozzle should vastly outperform a cheapo from Amazon. Yet that was not my experience. I do plan on buying a much better quality hardened nozzle as I become more proficient at printing but this was an option that got me what I was looking for quickly.
I had an additional issue today that might explain some of my issues as well. I found the hot end was actually leaking molten filament inside the print head. It was not leaking at the nozzle I installed but instead at the throat of the hotend. I’m sure this occurs but it is really questionable given that this is a brand new machine.
I’m sure this contributed to flow issues and many other problems I have been facing with the SM. Fortunately it comes with a spare hot end module and the design means this is very easy to replace but it “feels” bad to have to do this after owning the machine less than a month. Currently running a print that will end up being a Christmas gift and it looks good so far but we will see…
I’m beginning to understand some of the reputation the SM gets within the 3D printing community as I have had zero issues out of the ender from day one, and a friend who purchased a prusa has had no issues either despite it running round the clock for over a month. When this machine is running well it performs incredibly well, but it certainly seems to need more maintenance and attention, as well as futzing with slicer settings in order to get consistent prints even when compared to a (substantially) cheaper machine.
I’m definitely not sending it back, and am over all still very happy with it, but the patience I had to troubleshoot problems to get ahead of the power curve is dwindling in light of having a machine I got for less than half the price outperform it about 50% of the time. It is still entirely possible that I am to blame, but as time goes on with the Ender running like a top and the SM constantly needing adjustments and tweaks, it is beginning to feel like that is not the case.
Wild guess here, but from what I have read elsewhere on most of your print quality issues, it sounds to me like humidity variations affecting the filament.
Do you hermetically seal the rolls between prints?
Or do you not dehumidify the rolls just before printing?
I have no doubt the higher quality nozzle gives better prints, but were the test items printed at the same time or under the same conditions?
All of the filament I used was either fresh out of the vacuum seal from being brand new or is stored in a vacuum bag with desiccant. So unless I need to dry each roll regardless of whether or not it’s new, vacuum sealed, or other wise, I don’t think this is the issue here. If it was though, all this would tell me is that the Ender is still less susceptible to print quality issues from sub-optimal filament condition.
I am beginning to think that I had a bad hot end. Likely slipped by QC because the device did print and was printing in decent quality off and on.
The new hot end is not leaking after running for 4.5 hours and despite some minor quality issues, the current print looks pretty good so far.
Hallo hatte schon anfang des jahres probiert ordentlcih zu drucken deshalb kauft man ja eine 3d drucker bis heute klappt es nicht. Es ist ein krampf und echt schade ums geld. support es hat sich von der firma nie jemand gemeldet. damit ich meine zeit im sommer nicht aus warten vergäude. probiere ist es jetzt im winter nochmal.
Mein problem: snapmaker eigenes filament und ihrer eigenen einestellungen machen immer einen schlechten ausdruck. Ich würde gerne die düse tauschen bin nicht darauf gekommen wie das geht einfach rausdrehen klappt offensichtlich nicht. Habe mich auch mit den tempaeraturen gespielt von 195-210 alles schlechte ausdrucke egal ob fast normal oder langsam.habe auch diese methode mit den filament 10 cm abmessen gemacht das passt schon. alles trotzdem haut es nicht hin. jetzt update auf 4.2.3. gemacht und trotzdem passt es nicht. gott sei dank funktioniert der laser sond wäre der drucker schon draussen.
Aber ich will gerne drucken und verstehen wie ich die fehler ausmerzen kann.
hatte zwar einaml hilfe und es war toll aber ich bin nicht weitergekommen.
werde noch probieren diesen temp turm . denke aber das das auch wieder zeitverschendung ist . leider. Vielleicht gibt es jemand der mir so was wie ein mentor ist, da mich das thema eigentlich sehr interessiert.
bin für jeden ratschlag dankbar.
Sorry friend… my German is not the best… I caught pieces of that though, and can tell you’re having issues as well. I’ll do my best to answer what I can.
As for taking the nozzle off, the best thing you can do is remove the hot end, lock the body in a vice, and use either an adjustable wrench, socket wrench, or vice grips to simply turn the nozzle to the left and loosen it. Without locking the body of the hot end in a vice, this becomes much harder, and if you try to do it while it is still in the machine it will potentially damage your machine.
As for the filament and settings, you’ll get no argument from me there either. The stock filament and settings gave me very poor results. Try using Cura and the defaults for the Ender 3 S1. This gave me decent results and faster print times.
Printing has a lot to learn and I’m fairly sure that Luban is a good program but is much more manual than many people are expecting. Hope this helps…
Unrelated, here is the latest print after swapping the hot end and nozzle. I am definitely getting much better results and after 30+ hours of consecutive printing, there are no leaks around the hot end. Very happy with this result. The only issues are caused by the part being printed coming off the bed and creating some roughness. This is a fully articulated squid model that the Ender simply could not print but the SM nailed first try with the added benefit of being able to double the size thanks to the larger print volume.
Hello my friend.
Thanks for your fast answer.
I will cange the Software and der nozzle.
I will contact you again. Many Thanks
with best regards