Hey There Folks,

In this Instructable, Social Transformation brings you the basics on how to 3D print on a Type A Series 1 3D printer. This was made at Techshop San Francisco. For more information on Techshop and how to get involved in your Maker Community check out


In this guide you will learn:

  • How to print your G Code File How to adjust the spacing between the extruder and build platform (Using Pronterface)
  • How to load filament into printer
  • How to upload an STL file to a slicer software (using KiSSlicer)
  • How to make basic adjustments in KiSSlicer
  • How to create a G Code file
  • How to upload G Code into Pronterface

To use this guide you will need:

  1. Type A Series 1 3D Printer
  2. PLA Filament (1.75mm)
  3. KiSSlicer Software (open source)
  4. Pronterface (open source)
  5. Pliers
  6. Wire Cutters

Step 1: Adjusting the Spacing Between the Extruder and Build Platform

Before you beginning 3D printing, you are going to have to create the proper spacing between the Extruder (the heated machine that extrudes the filament in a liquid solid form) and the Build Platform (the flat surface that the Extruder prints onto) to maximize the quality and speed of the printing process.

If the Extruder is too high or low from the Build Platform then the filament will extrude out of alignment with your digital blueprints, with lack of accuracy and durability.

As a general rule of thumb, you can find the right spacing by using a piece of card stock paper. Ideally, you want to be able to place the card stock between the extruder and the platform with a slight snug fitting. This means that, if resting on the platform, the card stock should just lightly skim the bottom of the extruder.

To do this:

  1. Make sure that your printer is connected to your computer via USB
  2. Open Pronterface (the printer controlling software)
  3. Click "Z-Home" to bring the platform and extruder to printing position. The "Z Home" button is for the Z-Axis of the printer.
  4. Take a piece of card stock and see if you can place it underneath the extruder. If it cannot fit, then we will need to adjust the platform lower, if there is no friction against the card stock then we need to make the platform higher.
  5. To adjust the height of the printer platform, first lower the platform 60mm by hitting the larger button labeled "10" 6 times on Pronterface. This will lower the platform 10mm 6 times = 60mm. That is enough space for you hand
  6. On the back wall of the printer in the middle of the wall there is a small black dial. That dial controls the fine movement of the 3D Printer. Turn it clock-wise to raise the platform and counter clockwise to lower it.
  7. Once you have adjusted it, hit "Z Home" and test the card stock again. If it has a slight grip but doesn't feel tight then you've probably hit the sweet spot but if not then repeat steps 5-6 until you have.

About This Instructable




More by Social Transformation:The Basics of 3D Printing on a Type A Series 1 Beta: Made at Techshop: San Francisco 
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