Hey! This thing is still a Work in Progress. Files, instructions, and other stuff might change!

Replicator Bed Level Jig

by phineasjw May 18, 2012
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I was having similar issues with levelling, so I created a large rectangle, the size of the bed, and offset 4 others about 1mm apart toward the inside of the rectangle. I then run the print, while watching closely and adjusting the leveling knobs, while the print is running. By the second or third rectangle, I usually have the level perfect.

Doh, I bought a gauge with only 10mm travel.

Any way I can expect it by another 10mm?
I can remove the tip, which seems to have a M2.5 screw shaft. Was thinking if either I can superglue a bit of a shaft from another screw maybe.

Or how can I reduce the height of this model?

Awesome. I bought the guage months ago and wanted to build this exact jig. Thank you for creating it.

The very first print I made after using it was the best I've done in years of 3D printing.

Best $30 I spent, after buying a 3D Printer.

This is genius, I got a FlashForge Dreamer a few weeks ago and my biggest complaint is the paper method of leveling the plate. I'm going to adapt this the the dreamer ASAP, just ordered the gauge and the magnets - I'll work out the rest as I go - wonderful solution.

Did anyone else find it extraordinarily hard to get the fracking magnets into this thing? I snapped my first print at the curve trying to press them in with every method at my disposal. I am currently printing another now but any tips on how to get the magnets in without destroying it would be great!

I am using the 5/16 mags from Harbor Freight. Yes, I printed the correct one:

Last updated: 07-09-12
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Ninja Edit: In my infinite wisdom I sized it up with a 5/16 drill bit and BINGO! worked like a charm. So ... very hard to get in there ... probably impossible ... without a little spin from the bit to take away plastic. My advice would be not to go the whole way since the magnet is only so deep. Half the depth and squeeze the rest in there. Super tight either way. AWESOME! Can't wait for the new one to finish printing now!

Do you know if this will fit a flashforge pro? thanks

I just opened it in SketchUp and measured, it comes out to 70mm guide rod to guide rod so it should fit your FF Creator Pro (same model I have). I'm in the process of printing one up now.

I just wanted to stop by and say thank you for making this model. I've been using it every time I print for 2 years now. There are so many things that one must watch out for that can cause a print to fail. This add on helps immensely in eliminating the most common problem, unleveled/trammed bed. Thank you +1000!

when i print this the magnet holes are 5.8 mm or .22" instead if 1/4" so they need to be drilled out more to fit the magnets

When printing with plastic, remember that most plastics expand when heated then shrink as they cool. Depending on the plastic, the shrink can be considerable.

I made something similar to this, but what I have found is that the dial indicator actually pushes down on my replicator 2's build plate (waiting on my aluminium arms to strengthen my z axis). I guess you know what that means, I can't actually level my build plate using my current dial indicator. Has anyone had this problem? I think analog dial indicator's spring is just too stiff. I ordered a digital one, I hope that one will work.

I was careful to not jam the dial indicator too far into the printed part. In Phineasjw's instructions and the youtube video, he mentions not to sink the dial indicator very far down, as it could cause the issue like you are seeing. Have you tried simply moving the dial indicator farther from the build platform in the printed part? I'm using a digital indicator (the exact model shown here) and its worked great for me on my Replicator 1.

Will this fit the rep2?

the yellow plastic you use on your buildplate, how do you make it stick? i have a roll of that material, but dont know how to stick it to the build plate... thanks in advance!

If you are referring to the original Kapton, it is adhesive backed already. However, I quit using Kapton in favor of this polyester tape for its superior strength and toughness http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:50729http://www.thingiverse.com/thi... I have been using the same piece of this tape since February 2013.

Rigid Polyester Tape for Replicator Heated Bed

thank you for your reply. the roll i have looks exactly the same, but has no sticky back as far as i can see

This is the best tool ever!! great work!!

This works really well and is so much easier than the shim method. The method I've been using to try to get my new machine figured out is coarse level with the shim, fine level with the indicator, then recheck with the shim, and tweak it in to perfect with the indicator.

That bit about leveling at your build temperature is really important and I wanted to comment to reinforce it.

I ran an experiment with running my replicator HBP up and down from room temp (19C in my basement) to 110C. I think I may have a warped plate issue, so this may be an extreme example, but here's what I got:

When the plate was perfectly level at 110C, flatness was off by about 0.004".

When I drop to 19C and allow to stabilize for a while, the HBP appears to be perfectly flat, but about 0.030" (~0.08mm) off level.

I also wondered a little bit about creep so I ran it back up to 110C and checked it at T=0, T=15min, and T=30mins. I realize that this is a relatively short timescale for creep. I did see some minor changes (0.001"-0.002") at each location but I'm guessing these differences may have more to do with ahem 'operator technique' than actual creep and would need to run a little Gauge R&R on myself and my indicator/fixture before I draw any definite conclusions. Initially, I suspected that the warpage with temperature issue may have been primarily due to the plastic arms, but if that was the case, I would expect to see a little bit more obvious creep response. So, I'm guessing the warpage is primarily HBP design or manufacturing process related and that going out and purchasing aluminum arms to replace the plastic ones won't help much..

Printed it, but the Harbor Freight magnets did not fit. I will redesign and then post online as a derivative.

:-D thank you for taking the time to make this and the video, this has helped me increase my accuracy and level incredibly.

End of line.

I only did 10% infill and it seems pretty good, also the magents are a press fit or will a little superglue help?

This is simply brilliant. It takes the frustratingly subjective leveling process and makes it mechanical and repeatable. My Replicator prints have gotten very reliable since building this.

I made a variation for the 0.375" magnets I got from Edmund Scientific: http://www.scientificsonline.com/ceramic-permanent-magnets.htmlhttp://www.scientificsonline.c...

THANK YOU!! This fixed 90% of the problems I've been having with larger prints! Now if I could only get long, thin things to print without being bowed when they come off...

I'm a novice, but why not raft it? I think the rafting is supposed to solve that problem exactly. I printed a 9" long .1875 piece the other night with a raft and it's straight as an arrow.

Just waiting on my magnets to get this show on the road.

Finally got the Harbor Freight delivery.

Just curious, why doesn't the jig itself doesn't sit level?

I changed the design mid-stream and forgot to adjust the rail contact points to keep them even. As long as it is repeatable it doesn't make a difference though.

THANK YOU! I had nearly made up my mind to box my machine up and sell itb ecause I was unable to make ANY successfull prints... after many attempts, I got this one to kind of print and voila... it fixed everything.

A simple solution to the problem. This method works very well.

Harbor Freight sells a stack of rare Earth magnets for $1.89. They are 5/16" though, not 1/4".


A 5/16" drill bit to widen the holes, and the above linked magnets work great.

This is a great tool. Thank you for uploading this.i was wondering if you could also upload the CAD file as I was hoping to make a few modifications to suit the dial indicator and magnets I have available.


I made a derivative (a remake in OpenSCAD) that worked out well for me. My dial and magnets had different measurements. It's parametric so you might find it useful:


Parametric dial gauge holder for Replicator
by Bror

I uploaded a .igs CAD file. Hopefully your CAD can import this format. BTW, I use Alibre.

I love this. I made one and I'm using 1/4 magnets. The fit was to snug for me to clamp it in so i drilled it just a little bit to fit. I also used epoxy to cover and hold the magnet in. My bed has never been more level. Thanks for designing this!

Quite liking this. Didn't have the magnets properly, but gravity alone did a pretty solid job. This just feels much more reliable than the official method. Well done!

I like it. I'll go get the indicator today.

Fast question though. Any good source for the magnets?

I don't remember where I got the ones I had laying around but I found these that should work.


Great idea. I will be using this soon. I also made a comment section on my last video (MakerBot Replicator) about an automatic leveling idea. Let me know if you think it's a good one if you have the time.

Latest video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CeD2ySdbvywhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v...