3D Printing & Modeling + Ed3DP
2. 3D Printing
This chapter covers the process of converting your 3D model file into GCode ready for the 3D printing. This is commonly known as "Slicing" because the 3D model file which are "vectors" (mathematical formulae) are turned into geometrical coordinates (x,y,z) layer by layer. The layers are horizontal and are also called "slices" hence the term "Slicing" your 3D model into GCode.
You can use any open source or commercial 3D modelling and Slicing software with the Educator 3DP as long as it produces standard GCode.
We recommend and support Cura for "Slicing" which is open source. This version of Cura has been in use for many years and is easy to use yet complex enough for tweaking your print settings. It suits an educational environment well. There is a new version of Cura available but we have not started using this yet.
The biggest problem with 3D Printing is job adhesion and warping. This usually relates to nozzle distance from print bed, bed temperature, nozzle restrictions or bed level issues. Try this extensive 3D Print Troubleshooting guide for detailed hints. These issues will be covered in subsequent chapters.