Is my RAMBo card finally giving up?

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Is my RAMBo card finally giving up?

Post by askernas » Thu Feb 21, 2019 1:09 am

Hi all

I have an M2, I've had it for six years now..

For most of the last couple of years, I've printed happily with octopi sending all files to my M2, everything have been working great.... Up until one point!

Now, I have failed prints at random, for no apparent reason.
Well, I know the reason. Octopi claims the serial connection went down.

I've looked in to this, and this could potentially happen if the raspberry pi had substandard power supply. Mine does not. I use the official rpi power supply. Besides, this was working fine with nothing changed for years.

Fast forward to now. I am lucky to get a print through without my M2 stopping mid print... waiting until the timeout happens, the bed drops and then it just sits there. hot end and bed still on, fan going full, but nothing else.

So, I have changed out everything. I have changed power supply, ssd card, rpi and cables. I've even replaced all cables in my M2 in one go.

Today, I did however do one thing. I took the case off, and when my M2 failed mid print, I noticed that I had two LED's on the RAMBo not acting as they should.

LED2 was blinking red, rapidly, and LED3 was shining with a steadfast red light.

So, my Google-Fu has not led me to any answers what these diagnostic lights actually mean, but blinking red is rarely a good sign.

So I ask you: Does anyone of you know? Since the printer is sort of working, I don't think it's a fuse. All fans and heat bed and hot end is working. It just fails randomly. More often than not, actually. Especially on long prints.

I thought it could be over heating, but I see no such thing to support this.

Please help: Is my RAMBo starting to die on me?


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Re: Is my RAMBo card finally giving up?

Post by ednisley » Thu Feb 21, 2019 3:54 pm

askernas wrote:
Thu Feb 21, 2019 1:09 am
Octopi claims the serial connection went down.
LED2 shows the extruder heater PID loop is running and LED3 shows the extruder fan is on:

You just never noticed the blinkiness before … [grin]

Because the extruder heater is still running, the firmware hasn't detected a (possibly bogus) thermal runaway or any other fatal problem. It's just waiting for the next line of G-Code, but Octopi isn't sending it.

Casually searching the GitHub issues, there's a report of intermittent serial problems from last year:

Which points to the FAQ: ... eption/228

Look at the Octopi Terminal log to see if the conversation just before the failure matches those descriptions.

Assuming you haven't updated the printer firmware or anything on the Octopi, then something physical has gone wrong.

First and least obviously, the Pi's MicroSD card has probably started to fail: they're not particularly durable when used as a mass storage device and "the last couple of years" is more than you should expect. Download a fresh Octopi image, put it on a shiny-new, good-quality card (*), and see if the situation improves.

Then I'd suspect the Pi's power supply, even though you're using the "official rpi power supply". All of those things contain the cheapest possible electrolytic capacitors, running right on the edge of madness, and produce bizarre errors when they begin to go bad. Get a good-quality wall wart (**), ideally with a UL rating, and see if the situation improves.

While you're buying stuff, get a good-quality USB cable (***) to replace the one that (assuming you're like me) you've been saving for the last decade Just In Case™. Use the shortest cable possible, because longer does not equal better.

After that, the problems get truly weird. Apply some tweakage and report back.

(*) This is harder to do than you might think. You may safely assume all cards available on eBay and all "Sold by X, Fulfilled by Amazon" cards will be counterfeit crap. I've been using Samsung EVO / EVO+ cards (direct from Samsung) with reasonable success: ... sk-memory/ ... ification/ ... 22y+zq29p/

The card in question eventually failed, so having a backup card ready to go was a Good Idea™.

(**) Top-dollar may not bring top quality, but Canakit has a good rep and costs ten bucks through Prime.

(***) Amazon Basics cables seems well-regarded and work well for what I've needed.

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Re: Is my RAMBo card finally giving up?

Post by airscapes » Thu Feb 21, 2019 4:35 pm

One thing you did not mention was have you printed from a file on the SD card? This would eliminate a lot of thing if it works as it should.
Also what are you slicing with.. I know you said it is intermittent.. so this may be irrelevant but I have had a similar weird thing happen.. I accidentally set my retraction to 90 rather than .90.. would start to print then just sit there.. for obvious reason.. like I said probably not relevant .

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