Spaces and gaps in print

First of all, I want to start with; “I am VERY happy with my Snapmaker and the quality of my prints”.

I recently started a large project with multiple parts. Halfway through, my prints started getting gaps or spaces in the print. Various sizes, but I realised that something is wrong. As if the filament is not flowing constantly. I must add, that sitting next to the printer for the past 2 months, I know exactly when things do not sound right. I picked up that there is sometimes a click sound. This is mostly on the first layer when my calibration is too low. The reason for this clicking is that the amount of filament pushed in by the feeder cannot get out of the nozzle if the nozzle if is too low, then the gear on the feeder starts slipping making a click sound.
Back to the gaps and spaces. I reckoned that the nozzle might be clogged or the feeder gear might be slipping. I checked the filament roll to ensure that it was not stuck or tangled. I then opened the extruder in an attempt to replace the nozzle.
What should I do when the nozzle is jammed?
On this, I can state that the procedure in the manual might need to change a bit, especially if you have printed before and there is melted filament in the nozzle. First, loosen the nozzle screw in E before loosening the screw under the fan in D. I would also include the steps of heating the nozzle with a “Change Filament” as suggested by @Rainie on Heating Tube Screw Stripped
In my attempt to remove the nozzle, I managed to get the nozzle screw loosened and the screw under the fan loosened, however, I then let the nozzle cool down before attempting to remove the heating tube and thermistor.
Reading a bit more on the forum, I stumbled across a discussion about the feeder gear. I then removed the fan to inspect the gear and found some dust/filament in the gear cavity. This was catching around the gear and causing the slipping. I cleaned this out and are now printing a new set without a problem.

If you notice gaps or spaces in your print, open the extruder, remove the fan and clean the gear.


I had the same problems until I improved the spool holder.
Sometimes with badly wound spools the extruder pulls against a blocked filament supply.
Then this gaps happen…

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Do you have a design for your new spool holder?

You can use mine but it is not compatible with the snapmaker filament but for spools with an inner diameter of 53 mm (like my AprintaPro fiaments)
On thingiverse you can find a bunch of different spool holders…

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Thank you @rojaljelly (Michael)
I see that I have yours saved on my Thingiverse page. I eventually printed this one;

However, on both of them, the rotation is perpendicular onto the feed. Seems I need to design something. It has been on the back of my mind for a while…

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I did design this little spool holder based off of the one Waldo just shared, but this one fits the bearings I have. I’m going to design a spool holder that rests on top of the printer as the one that is mounted at 90 degrees from the print bed isn’t fairing too well for me.

Also ensure that you aren’t under extruding! Do you have any unfinished/stringy looking walls? You may be under extruding a bit and you can calibrate that by following this guide :slight_smile:

It was shared on this forum before, but I don’t remember who by.

On top of that, ensure that you are printing at a high enough temp. Occasionally if the temp is too low it can lead to poor bonds between the layers. There is a sweet spot in the middle that is just about perfect!

Hope this helps :slight_smile: