Strategy for using S3D Variables

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Lateralg
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Strategy for using S3D Variables

Post by Lateralg » Thu Feb 11, 2016 12:24 am

1) What's the difference between FFF files and Process files? What value do process files provide?

2) What is a good strategy for saving the settings from good prints?

3) How avoid inadvertently deleting or altering a good file?

4) Advice/clues for good S3D file management.
Gary
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Jules
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Re: Strategy for using S3D Variables

Post by Jules » Thu Feb 11, 2016 1:19 am

Lateralg wrote:1) What's the difference between FFF files and Process files? What value do process files provide?
You can use the process file to create a set of FFF rules that apply to only part of a model - for instance you can set a process for Layers 1 through 40, and a separate process for layers 41 through 45, if you want it to go slower on the top 5 layers. You can change the layer size down for fine detail prints on surfaces, but blast through the bulk of the print underneath at higher speeds and at a higher layer height. (Stuff like that. :D )
2) What is a good strategy for saving the settings from good prints?
Name it, name it, name it when you save it. If it's for a particular color of eSun PLA - call it eSun blue PLA. If you use different plates, call it eSun blue PLA on PEI. If you use different kinds of filament call it eSun green PETG on kapton. The more information you can get into the name, the less trouble you'll have finding it. I always name for the Filament, the Manufacturer, the color and the plate surface.
3) How avoid inadvertently deleting or altering a good file?
After you have created and saved the perfect FFF files for a particular filament and plate - Export the FFF file to your computer where a copy will be saved without being over-written.
4) Advice/clues for good S3D file management.
I keep four folders on my desktop:

3D Designs Working:
My own designs under development. Each has a folder with the name of the file, the AI file, the Rhino file, the various iterations of the .STL file and a backup of the Rhino file in an un-merged and incomplete state in case modifications are needed down the road. (Nothing worse than having to recreate it from scratch.) This folder contains the designs that didn't work, got interrupted, or that I didn't like but might revisit one day.

3D Designs Completed:
Same as above only they also include the photos for publishing.

3D Designs to Try:
Other folks' work that looked interesting. Definitely the largest folder at the moment. :lol:

FFF Profiles
I save all of them to a folder on my desktop so I can find them again if i accidentally save a modification that I don't want. :D

As far as the bulk of the stuff on Thingiverse, I created a few categories and add the stuff that looks interesting into those. Thingiverse is actually an excellent way to keep track of designs, because you get pictures. If you just download them, you have the file, but you might not know what the heck it is without a photo.

Lateralg
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Joined: Mon Apr 14, 2014 8:21 am

Re: Strategy for using S3D Variables

Post by Lateralg » Thu Feb 11, 2016 2:07 am

Wow!
Straight to the point. Easy to comprehend, etc. ... your usual. Thank you.

Another: What actions need to be avoided in order to prevent unintentionally deleting or overwriting a file?
Gary
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Jules
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Re: Strategy for using S3D Variables

Post by Jules » Thu Feb 11, 2016 2:11 am

Lateralg wrote:Wow!
Straight to the point. Easy to comprehend, etc. ... your usual. Thank you.

Another: What actions need to be avoided in order to prevent unintentionally deleting or overwriting a file?
That i don't know - cause I still overwrite the damned things! :lol: Just export a copy to your computer - it's the best insurance you can have.

Lateralg
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Re: Strategy for using S3D Variables

Post by Lateralg » Thu Feb 11, 2016 2:22 am

"You can use the process file to create a set of FFF rules that apply to only part of a model - for instance you can set a process for Layers 1 through 40, and a separate process for layers 41 through 45, if you want it to go slower on the top 5 layers. You can change the layer size down for fine detail prints on surfaces, but blast through the bulk of the print underneath at higher speeds and at a higher layer height. (Stuff like that. :D )


I think I've got it. If I read this right, a big majority of my/our prints won't benefit from a process assignment. Correct?
Gary
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Jules
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Re: Strategy for using S3D Variables

Post by Jules » Thu Feb 11, 2016 2:34 am

Most of them, probably not.

If you have a lot of teeny tiny lettering or surface details you want to keep sharp, you can use it to slow it down so they don't develop heat soak problems. (And if you have a dual extruder you need to create a separate process for each nozzle when you use them simultaneously.) But for general printing, no.

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ryaneb85
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Re: Strategy for using S3D Variables

Post by ryaneb85 » Thu Feb 11, 2016 2:59 am

I now use two processes for every print at a minimum. The first process is just 2 layers in total which turns off coast, extra restart distance, makes the first layer 0.25mm thick etc. This now makes the first layer go down perfectly whereas before I struggled when needing to print at 0.1mm and had coasting and other features turned on. I decided to do this after reading tips from Ed and a couple of the other guys, and it's improved my printing experience enormously. Failed first layers are a thing of the past and now it just works. Every time.

The second process is the "normal" print settings. Desired layer height, speed, ooze control settings etc.

Worth giving it a shot if you ever get frustrated with your first layer, especially if your bed is not 100% level.

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Jules
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Re: Strategy for using S3D Variables

Post by Jules » Thu Feb 11, 2016 4:01 am

Yep, that's an excellent example of where they can be useful. (I never had to use it for that, but I never tried to take it down to 0.1 mm either.) :shock:
I only started messing with processes when I upgraded to the dual. My first 6 months of prints i just used one process for each model.

But if you should run into trouble with some parts of the print, you can always try adding a second process and varying the settings for it like ryan did.
(I didn't even realize that could be done with just the first layer until then....very handy trick.) :D

Lateralg
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Re: Strategy for using S3D Variables

Post by Lateralg » Thu Feb 11, 2016 6:16 pm

Thanks to all. I look forward to better prints, less frustration, more free time to explore & learn.

Another of my unknowns involves the three macros available in S3D.
* Where are they stored?

I have the text of three that serve me well on my Michigan M2, but haven't found where to put them on my AZ M2.
Gary
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