3D Printing

How To Calibrate Your 3D Printer’s Extruder

Your 3D printer extrudes and retracts exact quantities of filaments in an effort to create your printed masterpieces. Nicely, it does if it’s correctly calibrated. Calibrating your extruder is likely one of the most necessary, in addition to one of the ignored, issues you are able to do to your machine.

Should you’ve been sad along with your printing outcomes or have observed both underneath or over-extrusion, this calibration will assist resolve some or all of those points.

Earlier than we start, let’s establish the elements in your printer that we’ll be masking, in addition to the two several types of extruder setups.

Direct vs. Bowden Extruder

Direct extruders are mounted immediately onto the hotend. They’re the most typical kind of extruder on Cartesian-style printers.

This can be a image of the Lulzbot Taz Mini Wade’s fashion direct extruder and scorching finish meeting.

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Bowden extruders will not be mounted immediately on the extruder. As an alternative, they’re sometimes mounted on the physique of the printer in a stationary place. They’re linked to the new finish with a PTFE, or different comparable low-friction tubing. Bowden extruders are mostly discovered on delta fashion printers just like the Rostock Max v2 by SeeMeCNC and the KosselPro by OpenBeam.

This can be a image of the SeeMeCNC Rostock Max v2 which makes use of a Bowden extruder:

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Direct and Bowden extruders are very totally different, however calibration is comparable for each.


Bowden Extruder Calibration:

  1. Join your printer to MatterControl. Guarantee scorching finish and heated mattress (if relevant) are turned off and funky to the contact.

  2. Take away Bowden tube from the new finish facet. Go away it connected on extruder facet.

  3. Feed filament (any filament besides versatile filaments like Ninjaflex) by means of your extruder till it simply begins to return out of the Bowden tube.

  4. Utilizing a razor blade or sharp scissors, minimize the filament flush/sq. with the Bowden tube. You desire a good, flat minimize in order that it’s extra simply measurable within the subsequent steps. Be certain filament is flush with the opening of Bowden tube.
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  5. In MatterControl, go to Superior Controls and click on on the Controls tab. Choose “100mm” underneath the Extrude/Retract buttons, and Extrude 100mm.*

    * Please be aware that some firmware is not going to extrude if the nozzle temperature is just too chilly. If the filament doesn’t feed when clicking the Extrude button, warmth the nozzle to at the least 200C and check out once more. 

  6. When the filament is finished extruding, measure from the top of the filament to the top of the Bowden tube. Write your measured quantity down. For finest outcomes, repeat this course of 3-4 instances – align filament with fringe of Bowden tube, extrude 100mm, measure – and take the common.

  7. If the measured quantity is MORE than 100mm, then you might be overextruding.
    If the measured quantity is LESS than 100mm, then you might be underextruding.

  8. Now we have to find the present worth your printer is utilizing to calculate extrusion distance – Extruder Steps per MM. You probably have a twin extrusion machine, this may be named Extruder 0, Extruder 1, or Extruder 2, relying in your printer.

  9. Open MatterControl. Superior Controls > Configuration > EEProm Settings Configure
    Each printer/firmware mixture will look a bit of totally different on this window. We’re in search of the “Extruder Steps/MM” field. It may be shortened to “Extr0” or “Extr1”, nevertheless it needs to be simple sufficient to find. 

    For this instance, I’m utilizing a Rostock Max by SeeMeCNC and the sector is “Extr1 Steps/MM”. The present worth is 93 steps/mm.

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  10. We have to do some primary math to calculate the right steps/mm in your machine
    The formulation is straightforward:

  • New Steps/mm = (Outdated/Present steps/mm) x [100 / (measured distance filament traveled)]
  • I measured 101.3mm on this Rostock max. My present steps/mm is 93.So, 93 x (100 / 101.3) = 91.80
  • Now we simply have to enter our new worth into our EEProm settings and we’re completed.
    In MatterControl go to Superior Controls > Configuration > EEProm Settings Configure

    Enter the brand new worth within the correct field, click on Save within the backside left nook.

  • The final step is just confirming our new worth. Set the filament again flush with the Bowden tube and extrude 100mm. Measure, and try to be proper at 100mm. If not, you’ll be able to repeat the identical course of, paying particular consideration to getting as correct a measurement as attainable.

  • Direct Extruder Calibration

    For Direct extruders, the method is a bit of totally different since you have to extrude the filament by means of the new finish.


    1. Convey your scorching finish as much as temperature for the filament you can be utilizing.

    2. Feed filament into your extruder/scorching finish.

    3. Utilizing some stationary level in your extruder, measure 110mm in your filament and mark it with a felt tip pen.

    4. In MatterControl, extrude 100mm of filament.

    5. Measure the place the mark on the filament is in relation to the place you measured from.
      If the mark is 10mm away, then your extruder is correctly calibrated. Likelihood is it is going to be roughly than 10mm away.

    6. If the mark is 6mm away, then 104mm was extruded and your machine is overextruding.
      If the mark is 14mm away, then 96mm was extruded and your machine is underextruding.

    7. Comply with Steps 8-10 from the Bowden extruder information to finish the calibration.


    There’s no substitute for having a superbly calibrated extruder. Should you comply with our easy information, you’ll be able to guarantee your printer is placing out the right amount of filament each time.


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