Introduction: HicTop Prusa I3 Setup
After assembling my Prusa, it seemed there was no real good source of information on how to set up my printer and get it running properly, luckily I had experience with 3D printers so I wasn't missing too much information. In this instructable i'm going to outline how to set up your printer, this includes leveling the bed, running wires and using Repetier Host to run your printer.
Step 1: Y- Axis Making a Grinding Noise?
A problem I kept having was my Y-axis motor making this awful noise I had no clue what causing it, first the metal piece the bed was attached to was hitting the motor, blocking the the bed from travelling completely. One of three design flaws I've found so far. To remedy this I had to bend the edge, I recommend using a vice and straightening it out. I don't have one so I was left to use pliers. Another issue I would run into were the rear wingnuts not fitting through the gap at the rear, I remedied this with sand paper, now I'm working on a piece to keep the wingnuts paralleled with the shafts and leadscrews. This was the second design flaw, rather than design something and go through trial and error I opted for my Dremel. The third and most irritating problem I had was I incorrectly ran my wires from the bed and limit switch when these wires get the least bit hung up it prevents the bed from traveling. Route the wires as shown in the pictures and you wont have any issues, but you will have to add extensions to the bed heater wires I used some 18 gauge speaker wire I doubt the polarity has any effect on the bed heater but I made sure to connect them correctly. I think I'm going to design some feet later on to raise my printer and completely eliminate the issue.
Step 3: Printer Won't Turn On?
When wiring my printer up the first time I figured all the commons were just that. I assume all the printers have the same power supplies, wire them up as shown and it should power up. Keep in mind the firmware should already be flashed onto your printer.
Step 4: Using Repetier Host
Click here to head on over the Repetier site and download for your platform the link is also pasted below in case the link doesn't work.
Just download and install like any other program.
Upon opening the program you simply plug in your printer and hit connect, if that doesn't work click "printer settings" and choose the COM port associated with your printer if your computer doesn't recognize your printer, you may need to install the drivers. The files are attached, download them and put them all in a file.
After connecting the printer to Repetier you should be able to manually move your printer, I suggest playing around with the program to get acclimated with the program. But I will show you how to load an STL file and get it ready for print.
Just follow the pictures and captions and you'll be printing in no time!
Step 5: Leveling Your Bed and X Gantry
To level the X-gantry simply place a level along the slides and turn one of the motors by hand until the gantry is level. if the printer is powered on AND you can't move the motors click the motor button to shut off the motors.
To level the bed: After ball-parking the right height for the Z-axis limit switch tighten all the screws until the printer head doesn't contact the bed. Now in each corner loosen the screws until you feel light friction when pulling a piece of paper between the bed and nozzle. If the bed is bare, use card stock. If you have applied tape to the bed, use regular notebook paper. When each corner how about the same friction, it's good to go.
Step 6: Helpful Parts
I noticed the y axis motor was leaning with the pressure from the belt so I made a wedge and my lead screws had too much wobble for my taste so I made some bushings, they did require some sanding but they fit in just fine, but if they're too tight, it may lock up the motor, in my case the left motor pulled the bushing through the the gap, all I had to do was level the gantry. The STL files are attached.
As for that rats nest of wires, it's just the nature of the beast.