Proximity sensor

Hey all,

So my proximity sensor broke a while back while auto calibrating (like the plastic snapped and the sensor would just dangle). Anyone know where to get a new sensor, or has anyone come up with a better sensor that works with the snapmaker?

Can you read the part number on the sensor? Somewhat unrelated, but I’m interested in the Z3—part number on the side, but I can’t read it on mine and didn’t want to disassemble it.

But yea, any normally open contact from signal to ground will trigger the probe. There’s lots of options.

You can get it from Snapmaker support as a sparepart!

Incorrect, support says “I have to buy the whole unit”. Brent as far as the part number - I can’t figure out where I put it! I took off the sensor to continue printing (yay manual leveling…), put it in my bin of spare parts, and now it’s MIA. So if anyone else has their unit disassembled for whatever reason, I’d be appreciative of any help :slight_smile:

for what its worth, the 3dp module itself goes for $115 which i felt to be pretty reasonable, but yeah a 5 dollar sensor sounds like a better buy

it wouldnt be too hard to rig up a microswitch to get you up and running until you get a better solution though

All of sudden I could no longer auto-level on my A350. So I did the “red-light test” with my spatula and no red light. While setting up my machine back in January, the red light showed up and leveling was never a real problem until now. I’m supposing I need to replace the proximity sensor but from the comments in this thread I’m not sure if that is possible. Can I get (and install myself) a new sensor from Snapmaker or do I have to purchase an entire new print head? Thanks for any help you can give me.

@Bluetarp apparently I guess you have to replace the head according to the previous comments. Guys, they really don’t carry replacements?

Honestly I’m about to do another Ir sensor conversion. I’m keeping one as a spare just in case but if you’re in the US I could just mail you the one I take out.

If your device is still under warranty (and even if it is not) do contact support. It really sounds like something they should replace under warranty if it just stopped working.

Thanks Artezio and brvdboss for your thoughts. I sent a request to Support but have yet to here back other than that they received my request. I’ll keep you posted

Thanks for your generous offer! Yes, I am in the US. I’m hoping to hear soon from Support, but if it’s not soon I’ll take you up on your offer.

One member did get them to send a new sensor. The IR board is so nice that I don’t need mine either. I am keeping it for now but yeah we could offer them up when Snapmaker doesnt wana send a replacement for some reason.

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Thanks Moose; I’m kinda new at this game and not very tech savvy. What is an “IR board”?

@Bluetarp An ir board is a board with led’s that emits infrared, it then reflects off the object back into the receiver led that tells it where that object is. This is just a basic explanation. There are different types of course.


The IR detectors are usually integrated into a single unit. The most common angle is 45°, as it eliminates certain bouncing issues. However, like the sensor that is built into the 3D Printer Module, it is designed to only check for the existence of an object, it doesn’t reliably detect distance. A TV remote, or IR alarm system, could possibly interfere with these sensors as well. Way back in the early 80s, we were still using these to detect the metal film start/end stops on reel-to-reel tape systems.

This is a major improvement over the stock sensor, albeit requires a bit of tinkering.


It won’t work great on the black sheet. Its used in conjunction with a glass bed (which is also a major improvement, and one that is pretty easy to do)

That’s not true with differential IR. These differential IR sensors, as being used to replace the inductive sensor here in this forum, do return an analog distance if configured to do so. However the tool head is expecting binary functionality so that feature is not being used.

And while that is technically true for an inductive sensor, in the same sense a microswitch just detects the presence of an object, the way I’m reading your statement sounds like it’s implying that it is unsuitable for calibration. It has a sharp response that is suitable for calibration purposes, with repeatability in the +/-0.01 mm range from my testing

@brent113 are you referring to the claims made by Filastruder and Duet3D? If so, they are even worse than the single unit devices that I was referring too. There isn’t a light tunnel to restrict where the light goes, or where it comes from. They also explicitly state that they detect a target height, but from what I see that could vary significantly. They don’t provide an analog height measurement. It will definitely work better with a perfectly smooth surface, and would be unpredictable with a textured surface like the one that comes with the Snapmaker.

Analog output diffuse mode IR sensors are a thing, and I have some at work. PWM or 0-10v.

They wont fit here, though.

Banner Engineering, Keyence and SICK all make them for example. Along with ultrasonic, visible beam, radar, etc.

Ultimately, this is just a simple application and doesnt require any analog signal, just on or off is sufficient.

Ok, so you’re referring to something other than what they are talking about here. Here, they are talking about either the Filastruder/Duet3D/Other Clone boards.

Yes, but you are too, we don’t need a distance measurement in this application, and the IR sensor specified here works pretty darn well actually, i was rather surprised.