Monoprice Select Mini v2 – Examples

After my last post I figure it’s time I to get up some examples of the printer at work and how it’s going.

Well, that’s not what I’d call quiet.

If you turn on sound there you can get an idea of what the noise is like. It’s uh… kinna loud. I know it’s probably difficult to compare as every printer is different, and between my phone recording this and whatever you’re watching it on having different volumes, it’s a hard know if that’s “loud.” Take my word for it, I guess. My Maker Select v2 was much quieter, namely towards the end before it was decommissioned and I had it dialed in and modded, so I might be spoiled in that regard.

I slowed down the speeds since this one and it’s not as rough but other noises have cropped up. There’s this strange noise on Y Axis moves, it sounds like the belts are rubbing quite roughly against something but I’ve taken a look and can’t spot anything.

Leveling this thing is tricky.

Between the above and the following images all my prints were failures because I didn’t quite have the concept of leveling this thing quite right yet. I’m far more comfortable leveling it now, but the bed’s warp in the center seems to have more effect on the PrintInZ plate than I expected. I might see about getting some glass and trying that, too. It’s disappointing that the MPSelectMiniUsers subreddit has a lot of V2 users with warped beds. Seems like this first batch sourced a heated bed that’s just too cheap or they didn’t put it through good enough QA. I’m hoping Monoprice is willing to do something about it that doesn’t require back and forth shipping.

Vin Diesel, but tiny and with chlorophyll

First half of an interesting model that is requiring a lot of support material. #3dprinting

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Here’s the body of a baby Groot model I stumbled on. This was printed Sunday and it came out MUCH better than I thought it would. The support material is kind of ridiculous but Cura 2.3 changed how it handles support material to a much nicer method, and with Cura 2.5 I really like it. I’m not opposed to using supports for the little stuff anymore. I still wish it had manually placed supports, but for objects like this it did wonders.

It is interesting to see how much stringing occurs between support towers, though. This isn’t a problem, just interesting. What it’s really doing is making sure it doesn’t have to retract the filament without risking the main object. What’s really strange about that is the over hangs it achieved via stringing that you know it can’t do with an actual model. That one stair step bit on top? How did it even pull that off?

If you click the right arrow you can see what the removed support is like, just a ton of it. It came off great though. At the neck I thought I broke something when the supports came off but then I realized that’s how it’s supposed to look, which was comforting. With the Mountain Dew can is there for size comparison, you can get an idea of the detail that can be achieved even on small prints with a printer like this, decent filament, and the right slicer settings.

The pictures really made the Z banding/wobble stand out here, though. It looks like layers are much thicker than they really are because the gantry moves around just a hair while moving up the Z axis. I’m not happy with the way that happens and I’m not sure if it’s the Z Axis lead screw being bent or just the gantry’s unsupported side… I don’t relish the idea of futzing with either so I’m probably just gonna deal with it. Beyond that the detail was good and, again, the supports came off perfectly so I’m quite happy with it.

What’s next?

I’m planning on taking a further look at the Y-Axis noise first, but with that I really want to see about getting this thing to quiet the hell down. It’s just a few feet from my head where I sit at my computer and it’s hard to do much else while it’s going. I mean, I can do stuff, but man it’s distracting. That’s why I’m comparing it so heavily to my Wanhao i3, which also was just a few feet away from me at my desk at work and I could completely ignore it if I wanted.

I also want to see about trying to get a better understanding of print bed’s center warp. I was hoping that raising up the PrintInZ plate with 4 silicone thermal pads in the corners would help more than it did. The center is still unmistakably higher than the corners. That said, it could be the PrintInZ plate, too. It’s designed to be bent slightly to help pop prints off, which it does really well, but I wonder if I put a bend in it that way.

As for what’s next to print? I dunno. I used to use the Ubisoft Maker Coin as a test, but since I’m not working there anymore it doesn’t feel quite appropriate. I’m thinking I need to design some sort of small trinket that’s slightly difficult to print, both for testing things but also to get back into learning 3D CAD. That said Onshape isn’t free anymore unless you’re comfortable having everything public, so I’ll need to look into alternatives.

Posted by JP Powers