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Aug 21, 2019, 06:41 PM
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Anycubic Chiron 3D Printer


Whilst the TEVO tornado is a FANTASTIC 3D Printer, it is lacking a bit of the features more recent 3D Printers have, plus it needs a lot of 'upgrades' done to make it even better - or maybe, to make truly good in total. Though for sure you could use it just it comes.
Even though I would 'recommend it as a great buy in cost, what you get, and result, there is the Artillery Sidewinder for not a lot more cost but with quite a lot more features of great use. It is the same basic design/type as the TEVO Tornado, just better.

So for a 300x300x400 size 3D printer, look at the Artillery Sidewinder !!

Anycubic Chiron
The Chiron is a 400x400x450 size 3D Printer = BIG !!!!
Whilst the Tornado size is quite large and does pretty well anything you usually would want to, SOME things reach those size limits.
But I had two other main reasons to get the Chiron....

All the new FEATURES on more recent 3D Printers.

Like a TFT TOUCH Screen control panel.
Filament Sensor.
Auto Filament insertion and removal.
Ultrabase heatbed surface.
Dual Z axis motors.
Power system UNDER the unit - not a box beside it.
Automatic Bed Leveling.

And..... after changing the Tornado to a E3DV6 hotend, I could not get the 'part cooling' system - fan and ducting - to work PROPERLY, no matter what I did. This reduces the printing quality - more so on any 'overhangs' and bridging. I spent a lot of time on trying to get it to work, and then decided TIME is money.... and a new bigger Printer, with more features, is of use too... so....

The Chiron is BIG !!! It dwarfs the Tornado!

And unfortunately Anycubic are not quite as 'polished' as TEVO.... and Artillery (Sidewinder) being way above those two also!!
There are some things you have to 'do right' to get it set up properly - more than they outline/claim in the Manual.....
Last edited by PeterVRC; Aug 21, 2019 at 07:23 PM.
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Aug 21, 2019, 06:48 PM
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Assembly issues


The Chiron, like the Tornado - and many others - are largely pre-assembled at the factory, so you don't need to do much to get it completed and ready to use.
The TEVO Tornado has a small list of steps - you do those, and it is done.... ready to go.

The Anycubic Chiron has a small list of steps - you do those, and it is...... not truly ready to go!!
They leave the X and Y Rollers loose - but do not tell you that in the Manual !!
I think they are loosed off so that they are not under load/compression in storage for ages, so that is not a bad thing.... just bad that they do not TELL you that!
If you do not adjust these and tighten them up it is not going to Print well at all !!!

Slightly 'worse' was that the Y Axis having a Dual Rail system (for having such a large print bed area) meant that one rail side has its Adjustable Rollers blocked by the Power Supply unit ! So you have to remove that to get access to them. Luckily that is not very difficult at all - but still a nuisance.

Everything else was as per the Manual and easy - pretty well all the same stuff as the Tornado or others need done.

THEN comes the Bed Leveling.......
Aug 21, 2019, 07:02 PM
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"Automatic" Bed Leveling


One of the 'good features' of the Chiron is the "Automatic Bed Leveling".... well, it could have been a great feature!!

Running Marlin 1.3.0 that is a function of the Firmware - not really Anycubic themselves, thus tons of 3D Printers use this feature in various ways also.
So I am not sure if the problems it has is Anycubics fault or not....

They have set it to use a 5x5 grid = 25 points to be checked and used in the Bed Leveling function.
To read those points they give/use a device which just uses a Microswitch to physically detect the nozzle height from the bed,
That seems well done to me.....
There are things for Bed Leveling like the BL Touch device etc, but they are effectively the same thing really. Or Optical and Inductive types.

The problem with the Chiron's system is that you do is as they outline, and it is a WRONG result!! Miles away from reading it all correctly.
"Everyone" seems to have this issue and I have not found a reason or fix for it!!
So "Automatic" is a useless function..... at least for now - until maybe I can work it out....

Then there is Manual Bed Leveling. Where the USER has to move the Extruder/Nozzle to the locations required manually.... then use the good old "Paper Thickness" method.... record that.... recheck that.... move to the next position, of the 25 !!
This takes a LONG TIME !!!
And then.... you want to do it at least once again, but really three times worked far better !!
About 2 to 3 hours of effort !!!
The result was great though......

I need to get the Automatic system WORKING PROPERLY !!......

The Chiron's Bed is WAVY. Only fractional, but enough that it is impossible to use the "Adjust the Four Corners" methods of Leveling. You MUST use the "Multi Point in Firmware" method. Thus must use the Marlin's Manual or Automatic Bed Leveling method.
Aug 21, 2019, 07:10 PM
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Anycubic "Ultrabase"


Anycubic have their own proprietary "Ultrabase" coating on the glass bed.
This becomes sticky when the Bed is hot, and totally releases the parts when the Bed is cool.

And... it REALLY WORKS !!!!

I was achieving the exact same thing using Hairpsray on Glass (Mirror), but with hairspray you need to BUY that.... and the RIGHT KIND.... and then spray it each time (optimally).....
Having a permanent SURFACE - COMPLETE HeatBed surface(!!) - to achieve that is way better of course!

Their surface holds 100% of the parts, all of the time, for sure. With hairspray sometimes it was not enough... or not everywhere.... so you could encounter issues for some prints.

It will be interesting to see if the Ultrabase coating ever loses that ability it has, or wears out over time.......
But while it is working (now), it is AWESOME !!
Aug 21, 2019, 07:16 PM
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HeatBed - Power..... and cycle time


The Chiron uses a 24v HeatBed......

The TEVO Tornado ues a 240v HeatBed !!!
This is technically a dangerous thing - or COULD be.
But it has a LOT of Power available and thus can heat up FAST.
About 45seconds to 70 degrees.

The Chiron takes 3 minutes to reach 60deg......
The Ultrabase holds parts fine at 60deg. Glass/Mirror/Hairspray on the Tornado really needed 70deg to work optimally.
The heating up time sort of 'matters' when you are waiting......

-----
Because you are not using a glass/mirror plate over the HeatBed with the Chiron, this means you can't begin another Print until you remove the prior part. And you can't do that until the HeatBed COOLS DOWN. That could take 10 minutes or more.

You COULD use glass/mirror over the Chiron Heatbed but then you lose the Ultrabase benefits!!
It would also lose Heat and take longer to heat up - not a lot, but maybe 30 seconds more.
But at least you could CHANGE the glass/mirror as soon as a Print complete and them start the next Print right way.

Oh well.... the Ultrabase benefits are worth it, so I am just WAITING between Prints.......
Aug 21, 2019, 07:20 PM
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TFT Touch Screen Control Panel


I mainly use OCTOPRINT (via a WiFi Raspberry Pi unit at the Printer and then a PC to access that over the in home Network) to control the 3D Printers, so a control panel on the Printer is not used a lot..... but it IS used for a reasonable amount of things!

The 'older' plain Display Screen with a Rotaty Control Know systems are PAINFUL to use! So you stay away from it as much as possible.
But with the Touch Screen panel it is EASY, so you then do use it far more often!
It is a really great feature to have on a 3D Printer!
Aug 21, 2019, 07:27 PM
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Firmware


The Chiron comes with an "Anycubic version" of Marlin 1.3.0
There are two main other Firmware around for now - done by the community.

Marlin 1.3.1
and
Marlin 2

These version also have a number of 'extra' functions/features added, so they are probably of good use to change to. (one or the other).
I am pondering over that, and there is no rush to change for now......
You can always chop and change Firmwares too, BUT you will need to re-do all Settings.... AND the Bed Leveling !!
Though possibly these other versions get the AUTOMATIC Bed Leveling right anyway!! That alone would make it worth changing to !!
At least one of those above do 100 Points of Ded Leveling rather than the Anycubic stock 25. (and that better work AUTOMATICALLY.... PROPERLY !!! )
Aug 23, 2019, 04:22 AM
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Report #1


Well, after having the Chiron printing a fair few things over the last days, I have found one main issue so far.....

It total FILAMENT amount I have not printed a lot..... maybe 50 metres in total.

After about the 30metre mark, printing a reasonable sized object, it stopped feeding PLA. Investigation showed it was a nozzle jam, but interesting was that just by MANUALLY pushing filament in my pressure capability got it flowing again so that was 'fixed'.....
But after another15metres or so it jammed again, and more seriously this time

This required pulling the print head assembly apart - or at least TRYING to.
I hate BOWDEN setups!! The clamp thingies always causes issues with the ends of the Teflon tubing. And in this case it is JAMMED into the J6 Heatsink and you can't get it out! (The teflon tube)

I headed down to the Nozzle instead and found that was blocked.

In 3D Printers often the Nozzle to HeatBreak JOINT has a small gap and that can end up with cooler plastic getting into there and that then form a shape/blob that won't move - in or out - then. But that had not happened in this case....
The nozzle itself was just almost totally blocked. The brass nozzle had the plastic 'sweated' into it which is another common enough thing with 3D Printers. Possibly related to cheaper nozzles maybe having a rougher finish, thus more 'grooves' in their surface to have plastic bond into those.

I changed to a different Stainless Steel Nozzle and it is off and running again.....
It will be interesting to see how long before another blockage occurs!!!
Aug 23, 2019, 08:12 AM
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Retraction Distance


I am pretty sure I have worked out WHY I was getting extruder jams.
RETRACTION DISTANCE

When I first set up the Chiron I used a 3mm Retraction Distance, This was because that was what I had used on the Tevo Tornado, before i changed that to a Direct Extruder setup.
I didn't think a lot about that, but just the other day I CHANGED that......

Firstly I happened to read someone's 'recommended' Chiron settings to use.... he had 6mm Retraction set.

Next I also downloaded Cura V4.1.2 to give Cura a try again.... and that also had a Chiron setup that had 6mm Retraction set in it.
Thus I began using 6mm......
And then the issues began.....

I have gone back to 3mm for the moment, and will see if that needs any fine tuning as I print more things.
Last edited by PeterVRC; Aug 23, 2019 at 08:29 AM.
Aug 23, 2019, 09:00 AM
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"Automatic" Bed Leveling


Well the Anycubic DIRECTIONS on how to do the Automatic Bed leveling are half useless/wrong = effectively useless.
And all the web sourced ideas and outlines of other people are no good either......

Seeing my new Stainless Steel Nozzle was LONGER than the stock one, it meant I was going to have to Re-Level the Bed !!
Oh no....
So I decided to apply myself to WORK OUT how it all really works - and if it canbe made to work properly!

I started by doing the Anycubic outline of how to do it. and then what that makes 'wrong' so I could see what to do to fix, or prevent, that.
It actually ended up that they are only a 'bit wrong' and the basis of the system (made by the Marlin Firmware really) is OK. Though it could be done better and then FULLY Automatic and correct !

1) Use a good ruler to check and set the four CORNERS of the HeatBed to be the same heights off the Y Axis Rails. It does not have to be perfect but useful to be as good as you can get it. A good position to use is get the BOLT THREAD that comes out of the Leveling KNOBS to be flush to the underside of the knob. They will actually not all be the same, but start with that and then choose one corner as your starting corner.

2) Run the stock PROBE process, as per their outline.
What this does is measure 25 points (a 5x5 Grid) of the HeatBed and records those.
Once this is done those measurements (offsets per point) are correct, but if you print now the Nozzle will be a fair way above the HeatBed and printing will be useless.

3) Pick one of the corners (eg the front left corner) and move the Nozzle to that position using the Axis Controls on the TFT panel.
NOTE: Any leveling changes you do will need you to MOVE the PrintHead (nozzle) via some control manner, for it to do and show any changes you make in the Bed Leveling values.
In the Bed Leveling screen, with "ALL" set to select all the points, you will see a value - likely to be in the -14.00 sort of region. Minus moves the Nozzle downwards so look at the nozzle to see a rough distance it is too high, and increase the MINUS value. eg maybe to -15.00
Go to the Axis Control screen and MOVE the X Axis 10mm right and then back 10mm left. This move makes the change occur,
Check the Nozzle to Bed gap with a bit of A4 paper...... then adjust that "ALL" value again..... and again..... until it JUST grabs the paper a bit.

4) Use the Axis Controls to move to each of the four CORNERS again - preferably to the same Point the Leveling moved to (close is good enough).
Adjust the Bed Leveling SCREW/KNOW to get this to just grab the paper again.....
So now you will have all four corners set to the same PHYSICAL Bed height.

5) Run the Automatic Bed Leveling AGAIN.
This will have reset all the recorded values, so bring the "ALL" -ve value down again, like the last time, for the Nozzle to just grab the paper - do the front left position first again.
This time the recorded 25 points WILL be correct and will also be the smallest differences possible - because you made the Bed as close to Physically Level as it could be first.
Use the Axis Controls to move to each of the 25 points and CHECK the paper there,
For any that are 'different' you can go back into the Bed Leveling Screen and select that ONE Point that you moved the Nozzle to. You will see it has a small offset value..... adjust that value (which is just that one Point) and use the Axis Control to move the Nozzle again (10mm right, 10mm left etc), so it changes the height position.

I keep the paper under the Nozzle all the time, and you can feel the 'grab' level even as you move the Nozzle across the bed to another position.
Most of the 25 positions will be right anyway.

This whole process is quite fast !!! Not really "Automatic", but "Semi-Automatic" really. The END RESULT is high accuracy and it all works!!
The fact they THEY do all the checking of the Points is the big time saver. Plus the fact that they get it RIGHT, and you are really just double checking the positions to fix an error if it IS there.... and sometimes is! Which is why you need to CHECK them all,

I think it took me 15 minutes to do it all.....
Not HOURS as per if you do it all manually! (as per numerous people's outlines of how to do it "so it works" tell you!!)

I am glad that it does work, once you see what is really going on and how to optimise that information and semi-automation they give!
Oct 22, 2019, 07:30 AM
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Chiron Update.....and some mods


They Anycubic Chiron ha been running perfectly fine since I got it.....

I made a new cooling assembly for it.... but did not use/fit it, seeing it was printing so well anyway. People suggest having the 'much better' cooling system, but the stock one seems to be just right as it is anyway!
Cooling CORRECTLY is a very tricky thing really! It is not a fixed/static thing - the requirements can vary a lot per part type, design, size, printing parameters, etc.

One thing that was always a nuisance was how the default setup Homes the nozzle to LOWER than the bed, but brings it back up if the nozzle is moved back over the bed by CONTROL of the system - but not when manually of course. And it raises it as it moves towards the bed, and actually JUST clips the bed a fraction, as it does not quite get high enough to clear it in time!
I actually could have easily fixed this ages ago, but didn't realise that... how to do it = easy....

The Anycubic Ultrabase glass bed coating is great, BUT.... that was another thing I found out later - how it is actually not as great as it SEEMS.
For small items... very small... I still use hairspray to assure a solid bond to the bed, which 'falls off' once the bed is fully cold.
Fully cold...... Hmmm, you might think of an issue with that ! ... ??
You have to WAIT for it to cool = a LONG time. Before you can print again! So whilst the bed's operation is GREAT, it is a nuisance too!
I kept wanting to change it to a glass, or mirror, bed - so that you can remove that and swap in another piece so you can print right away again - but there are pretty well no 400mm x 400mm pieces to get!
The cost of getting glass cut was not bad, but notably more if you get it 'edged' to be smooth and it is better to have MIRROR type glass which has a white 'tape' sort of backing. To get that cut was VERY COSTLY and thus too much to spend.
Until I found some CHEAP ones on eBay eventually. ONE source in Australia..... but still more to ship from interstate than the Mirrors cost!

So I got three of those, to allow fast swapping for even small fast printed items.

To hold the Mirror Glass on the bed I use two 25mm FoldBack Clips - one at the front and one at the rear.

There was another big bonus that showed up with the Mirror Glass. The Ultrabase is NOT FLAT.... so the Mirror Glass gives a super 'crisp' flat sealed underside on the first layer A big difference.
And so far I have not needed to even use any Hairspray on the Mirror Glass either..... but I have not printed SMALL things, and I am sure they will need it then!

Then the 'Home' Nozzle height....
I removed the left and right Z Axis Sensors, which are held on with bolts threaded into the frame. I used some 5mm x 6mm hex head bolts I had, to go with the 'rotating nuts' that the typical 3D Printer frames can use in their 'slots', and this meant I could MOVE the sensors UP.
The first reason I was doing this is because the 4mm Mirror Glass would need Home to be higher really. But THEN it clicked that I could make it be ABOVE the bed for HOME also !! DOH - I could have done that long ago!

Another Mirror Glass surprise BENEFIT....
A FLAT BED !!!
The stock bed is somewhat undulating! The 25 point Bed Leveling system of Marlin accounts for this quite well - but the Semi Automatic system to set it all does NOT, so you have a LOT of manual tweaking to do to get it truly right/optimal. Luckily once that is done you don't really need to do it again very often at all.
But with the Mirror Glass it is as good as DEAD FLAT, so then once the Semi Automatic Bed Leveling is done you only need one quick tweak to finish it all off!! I had also fluked finding some info from Anycubic which outlined WHY they made the Semi Automatic Bed leveling the way they did it is a variant of the stock Marlin system. So this helped UNDERSTAND how it really works, and why!

When I pondering the bed height with Mirror Glass originally, and I thought the Z Axis Limit Sensors had to stay fixed where they were - seeing they were bolted on in fixed Threaded positions - I got some new bed SPRINGS, shorter, so that I could LOWER the Bed by almost 10mm ! This was still a useful thing to do as it gives me more HEIGHT back for printing too!!

So all in all, the mods to use the Mirror Glass was a great outcome in a whole bunch of ways!!!
AUD$50 for the three Mirror Glass pieces (with smooth ground edges)... and $4 for the Spring set.....

....


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