Vibration a.k.a. ripple a.k.a. shadow a.k.a. ghosting test

by orcinus, published

Vibration a.k.a. ripple a.k.a. shadow a.k.a. ghosting test by orcinus Mar 21, 2014

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11547Views 1618Downloads Found in 3D Printing Tests
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  1. Print
  2. Inspect for ghosting of the sharp edges (letters, dimples, corners)
  3. Proof your machine for vibration
  4. ???
  5. Profit!


Make sure to test with both PLA and ABS at a variety of temperatures.

The hotter the extrusion, the more liquid it is and more obvious the vibration artifacts will be. Also, PLA is much less viscous than ABS.

Test with a variety of colors as well. Semi-transparent filaments tend to hide the vibration artifacts rather well. As do matte and very light filaments. Glossy black and opaque silver work very very well.

Mind the X and Y orientation when slicing - having the labels correspond to actual X and Y axes will make debugging easier.

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Also weight of your x axis can really effect your x axis ghosting at fast printing speeds because tbe weight shifts past its zero at speed, truly get good speeds is lighten the x

ionno, i prefer speed AND no ghosting. I did the belt twist mod from nophead and ghosting has been a thing of the past at 80-100mm/sec

Belt twisting has nothing to do with ghosting. What you're talking about is the vertical ribbing caused by thr belt teeth rubbing against the edge of your pulley and is easily fixed by the forementioned mod or just aligning the belt path.

Really good tips, thanks!

  1. ??? = Collect underpants.

I'm also interested! What printer are you using and what did you do to get such a dramatic improvement?

There was no single thing. There are tons of little changes that contribute to reducing the vibration. For starters, knock off your acceleration and speed. Everyone keeps lusting for speed when there is no reason to - you're not producing parts en masse in a factory, there's absolutely no point in going over 50 mm/s. Don't reduce the acceleration too much or you'll start getting blobbing, but anything above the values required to avoid that is unneccessary.

Tweak the belt tension. High tension = precision and vibration. Low tension = increased positional error, but decrease vibration. Find a happy compromise between the two. Add gaskets between the steppers and whatever you're mounting them on. Depending on your linear motion system, increase the friction. Your steppers will heat up more and require more current, but the friction will dampen the vibration greatly. Isolate the extruder with cork or adhesive gel tape. Add feet to your machine, but make them layered - layer of foam, layer of gel, layer of cork. The objective isn't to make your bot immovable, but to make it wobble on the feet, as that will absorb the vibration.

Again, lots of little things. Also, bear in mind they'll be short lived. Most of the improvements i've made 9 months ago have seemingly evaporated - the belt tension changed over time, the layers of padding compressed, etc. The only "permanent" tweak is reduction in speed and acceleration.

Final note: the more rigid your machine is, the more vibration you'll get. I'm using an ORD Bot, which is as rigid as it gets. There are no plastic parts connecting the metal ones - whole machine is one big bell. You can feel the Y stepper vibration in the X gantry quite clearly, as there are no transitions between materials to soak the vibration up. Rule number one in isolating anything is - the more transitions, the better. Also, the more rigid the machine, the higher the resonant frequency.

fma - in reply to orcinus

Thanks for these tips!!!
Another way to improve prints is at design level, rounding shapes as much as possible on intersections. Solidworks allows to do that very easily. More difficult with OpenSCAD...

orcinus - in reply to fma

That's true. Fillets help a great deal. Unfortunately they don't help with cases such as organics, sculptures, high res scans etc.

+1 to the comments regarding speed. I was caught up in that game for awhile when I first got my printer. Eventually my buddy said "why do you need to print fast?" Now I usually print around 35mm/sec.

What params can be adjusted to reduce such artifacts?

orcinus - in reply to fma

See my reply above.