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Flashforge 3D printer freezing and stuck before the logo is fully on the little screen Answered

I really like my Inventor, it is reliable and a strong work horse.
What I really hate(ed) though is the thing freezing up when you think you can quickly print out a part you just broke.

The symptoms are the same throughout the Flashforge range, so let me sum it up quickly to get on the same page here.

The printer worked fine for a while.
You turned it on one day and the logo is not fully displayed, about the top 20-25% are blank and the printer get stuck on boot.
In some cases waiting for 10 to 15 minutes makes the printer finnish the boot but it will only work like this a few times.
Once the printer is seemingly dead there is, or better was, only the official Flashforge solution to make it work again.
Take the machine apart and the SD card out, replace the firmware files on it after formatting the card on your computer.

I did the official solution a few times and it works just fine, even if you just delete the files on the SD.
However, there is a better option I found during the last few weeks of heavy printing.
Ever noticed how the printer keeps all your printed files stored on the SD?
A nice way of handling if you quickly need to print another part.
Totally useless though as the last part you printed is always the last part in the ever growing list of files to go through on this tiny screen.
Long filenames are bad, having more than about 50 .gx files on the internal SD is bad as well.
Combined they cause our freezing problem and the printer getting stuck on bootup.
I have not done a count but the amount of files until it happens seems to be quite consistently.
Really complex models seems to make the problem worse, especially when trying to scroll through the listed files on the touchscreen.
I now did about 4 complete rounds of replicating this problm in all variations I can think of.
From this I came up with quite simple solution that seems to be nagging a lot of people out there.

The solution to prevent your Flashforge 3D printer from freezing up:
Only keep on the internal SD what you know you might have to print again in the next few days.
Manually delete all other .gx files whenever you have the time to spare.
Try not to have any more than about 20 print files left on the SD at any given time.
I stuck to this and have now printed about 300 parts without any freezing up during boot.

Hardware solution if keeping the amount of print files on the internal SD low is not an option:
Be it in a school or makers community, sometimes you just can't keep the amount of print files ending up on the SD in control.
And forgetting to manually delete the files on day results in a stuck machine on another day.
To avoid taking half of the machine apart while putting iton the back you can mess with the SD card reader on the mainboard during the next firmware replacment and formatting on the computer.
SD card extenders are available online.
Usually just a ribbon cable with a SD card connector on one end and a "reader" on the other.
As a last resort you can get one of these cables and install them so the reader part comes out at the bottom of the housing.
Requires making a suitable slot for it in the cover plate though.
I did this for a while and it was quite convient but IMHO not a long term solution.

I contacted the Flashforge support with my findings and hope one day they will be able to address the issue in a firmware update to solve it for good.
Until then try the above to keep going ;)

Discussions

1
Cheesey125
Cheesey125

6 weeks ago

I don’t have flashforge, but many 3d printer companies have forums of their own, I suggest you research that

0
Downunder35m
Downunder35m

Reply 6 weeks ago

Well, if their forum or support would work as planned I would not have posted it here ;)
It is a bug that exists since they introduced the printers and does not seem to get addressed at all.
And I don't know about you but:
I just think it is not ideal to take an expensive machine apart every few weeks to remove a SD card from the mainboard, format, put the firmware files on it and put it all back together.
You have a 3D printer, so imagine the hassle of unloading the filament from the extruders, securing everything and taking the damn thing apart for no good reason.... :(
In most countries this qualifies for a recal or at least reimbursement for a semi faulty product.
Thankfully Flashforge is US based and won't be affected by local laws in other countries.

If some users find this topic then at least we might a chance to find a common cause for this problem and work on it.