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Has anyone had a jam yet? *Fixed! Thanks for the help!*

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I recently just switched my ABS Extruder to PLA, did one successful print in the PLA then on my second print, around 85% of the print being complete (about an hour in) the extruder stopped feeding filament and there was quite a distinctive clicking sound. I have tried upping the temps and pushing it through, also pulling it out and re loading but nothing is working. Anyone got any tips on unclogging.

Had my first jam tonight. Was trying to do a dual extruded pla/pla piece. Right extruder works like a charm, left jams before even wiping its nose. In my left side there is a slight space between the ptfe tube and the "cold end" the pla expanded into this space and lodged tight. I had to get it out with a drill bit after totally disassembling the left side (no drill just the bit). What a pain!

Check the tension, I had to do so many little adjustments to the tension on mine just to get it to print right, make sure your temp is not to high to.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vmIY9_6s8Ss See this video, It explain how to clean the extruder. Some filament is stuck in the teeth of the extruder, you just have to remove it.

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Please check my thread on 3d print board, there might be some useful info in there for you
http://3dprintboard.com/forumdisplay.php?34-FlashForge-Forum&s=20e72c597381c6649d62efe37a63f6e3

The clicking sound is caused by the extruder feed gear when the filament is unable to feed. The cause can sometimes be that the width of the filament is uneven, thinner than it needs to be. Other times it's caused by the nozzle being jammed. Jamming can happen because the temperature is too low, resulting in back-pressure building up to such an extent that the filament is shredded by the feed gear. Other times the nozzle is clogged when melted filament stays in the extruder for too long, resulting in it "carmelizing." PLA is more prone to carmelization than is ABS. One way to avoid this is by not pre-heating the loaded extruder for too long.

You know how to clear a jam, right?

  • Bob

Dear,

I got the same issue some time ago.
I got this clicking noise and print were always going wrong.

I then filmed my print (I could not stay around forever ;-) )
And found out that the screw were not OK... then with the screwdriver I fixed it all and then this issue disappeared

Hope that this share, can help you with your issue

There are a couple of youtube videos on how ot disassemble the extruder and clear the jam. I used one of these videos to help me clear the first jam. After that, Its pretty straight forward.

I never got my printer to print PLA it always making clicking2 sound as it was jammed, I suspect the hotend troat are not smooth enough to feed the PLA

Twice. I thought my printer broke and I needed to get it repaired with a minimum price of $180 + shipping to fix

I fixed it! I found out the problem, there was a little piece of squished filament where the extruder drive assembly pushes the raw filament inside the block to then go into the nozzle. Thanks you for all your help! you all increased my knowledge that much! I greatly appreciate it.

My Flashforge Creator does not work some PLA-filaments. The problem is the melting-point of the PLA and the transportation of the heat inside the filament. Some types of PLA get soft at a lower temperature - when the extruder pulls the filament back (whenever the extruder stops) it is already soft and the diameter of the filament is getting bigger when it is pushed down again. My Flashforge Creator does not have a Teflon-tube inside the extruder (I think that was added for the Creator Pro). I tried a lot of different setting - without good results. The only thing I could do was to search filament that does not have this problem - I bought PLA from 7 different suppliers - two have PLA that always works flawlessly with my printer.

I print PLA at 210-215°C, Taulman Nylon 618 at 245°C - 0.2mm Layer height

If you hear clicking - unload the filament, cut off about 3cm, load the filament. Also check the diameter of the filament - one time I got some filament that had pieces of metall in it.

I have run several types of filament through my Creator Pro including TPU, wood, and metal filaments and have noticed that I get much better results if I completely clean the extruder before loading the new filament. By completely cleaning the extruder I mean remove the extruder tip and pull the piece of Teflon out and make sure it is clear and ensure it is not deformed in any way. When I cleaned my extruder I noticed that a small bowl-shaped (shape of the inside of the extruder tip) piece of filament came out and I think that was causing poor performance and slight clog. I also found that one of the extruders had a piece of Teflon that was cut like 1mm to short so it moved slightly inside the extruder, this caused me issues unloading sometimes as well since the filament would expand slightly after passing through the Teflon guide and being forced up against the extruder tip causing a bulge which cause poor extrusion performance. I noticed a huge difference after realizing that using cleaning filament is just not good enough sometimes (it does have its place but no substitute for a real cleaning), sometimes it really helps to disassemble the tip and ensure it is clean. I am not sure how many hours you have printed on your printer but my guess is the Teflon piece inside the tip is due for replacement.

Based on the fact that you replied to someone that you have already disassembled and cleaned the extruder it may not be your issue (could be bad filament or improper settings) but thought I would at least share the issue I had with the Teflon guide. It could be that you have a very small amount of ABS in the inside of the tip and since PLA is extruded at a lower temperature that little bit of ABS is not melting enough and causing the clog.

Yeah, I decided to switch my extruders to PLA and store away the ABS that it came with and it is showing signs of a slight clog (as the working extruder extrudes, the melted PLA curves up on the nozzle and I believe I read that that can be a sign of clogging) But I am wondering if they tested the printers with ABS in them so if there is extra ABS in there and its not being heated enough to come out, that might be my problem. I might just end up taking off both extruders and cleaning them both and see where that takes me. Thanks for the help!

when you say ABS extruder - do you mean the right or left one ?

I had my PLA in the Left extruder and the ABS in the right, and I recently changed my right extruder to PLA, and the right extruder is the one causing me problems, however before the problem with my right extruder, I did a full successful 3 hour print before it failed to extruder.

I have alot of problems with the right extruder jamming randomly, to the point I'm reluctant to use it at all - making the dual extruder useless. It's to the point I have considered removing the right extruder assembly permanently.

What type of filament do you run in your right extruder? PLA has a tendency to carmelize if exposed to high heat for an extended period. You know how to clean jams both from the top by pushing a 1.5mm hex wrench into the extruder and from the bottom using a sewing needle, right?

Another solution that I've had great success with since I started sometimes running Ninjaflex is a cleaning filament. I'm always amazed what comes out of there. The one I've used can be found here...

https://www.amazon.com/Printer-CLEANING-Filament-Makerbot-Printers/dp/B00MVIYNFW/ref=as_li_ss_tl?s=industrial&ie=UTF8&qid=1446585863&sr=1-1&keywords=cleaning+filament&linkCode=sl1&tag=invenstudi-20&linkId=aa7ec2eb37817e59f746ff7d13563b90

  • Bob

I have had lots of jams exactly like you describe. I followed the video the first couple times, but now I take needle nose pliers and pull up on the filament as it is trying to unload. I have a printed replacement for the housing which gives a raised surface to pry against. The force needed to do it this way was a little scary at first. I stick the nose down in the hole and pry the pliers over the edge of the hole. Sometime also pressing down on that black lever at the same time. Finally, the worse case for me has been that this method breaks the filament and I'm back to the video method.

In my MANY jams, I have NEVER unscrewed the extruder nozzle. It is not necessary.

FYI, I had the exact same unloading problem with only 1 of my extruders on my Creator Pro and it appeared to be caused by a slightly too short Teflon guide (from the factory), you may want to validate that your Teflon guide is not too short and causng the filament to pool or bulge after the guide which causes the filament to be difficult to be pulled back through.

it can be a jam,, but i have had a clicking noise before and it wasn't a jam,, the temperature was set wrong so the gears were grinding the filament,, make sure the print bed is between 60 and 70 for the bed and 90-100 on the nozzle, depending on what filament you are using, as in the manufacturer because every roll is different,
also maker sure when you put the pla in you press load in and wait 2 seconds while its extruding then unload, it unclogs it and has helped me alot
hope i have helped

You need to remove nozzle, unscrew it while You hold heater stationary but do that while is heated on 200-230C for easier unscrewing.

Yes, if you play electric guitar, get a section of high E string, heat up the extruder and poke the guitar string it through the nozzle, upward, all the way through until it pops out the top. I have been doing this for 4 years, I need to do it with some types of PLA as they are low quality and have debris and contaminants you cant see inside. If you dont play guitar, go and buy an E string for an electric guitar, light gauge about 0.09. This is small enough to easily slide up the nozzle and clean the gunk out without damaging it.

Alright! I might be able to try and find an extra E string from my brother's guitar. Ill try it out and let you know how it goes! if it doesn't work I might just resort to doing a full "check up" and cleaning.

A couple of weeks ago i had the same issue. One of the extruders didn't work anymore and nothing helped. So i disassembled the extruder and found a small piece of fillament still inside. After removal of that small piece of fillament and assambling the extruder again the problem was solved.

for a tutorial on how to dissasamble see => http://www.flashforge-usa.com/support/video-tutorial => Creator => How-To => Disassemble the Extruder

Alright, ill try taking it apart I guess. Thanks for the help!

Edit: Nope my extruder is still jammed up, darn it.

If you're able to run filament through the extruder assembly without the nozzle and teflon guide then chances are your nozzle and/or teflon guide is clogged. If you can't even run filament through the assembly with the nozzle/teflon guide off then you need to clean out the extruder drive gear as shown in this video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vmIY9_6s8Ss

Tutorial here to clean out nozzle:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZTeEvJrfzA
Skip the acetone part since it is PLA. No reason to do it in general since the torch will burn whatever filament is in/on it.

For the teflon guide, take a small drill bit (forgot size, sorry) and push the filament inside of it if there is any.

Hope this helps.