Worn out extruder gear

Today I learned

Since the start of this year I started printing with nylon and carbon fiber reinforced nylon because of its strength. I have upgraded my Creality CR-10 printer to make this happen. What I have done among other things:

  • Using a Micro Swiss hot end to be able to print at higher temperatures
  • Using a food dryer to keep the filament dry
  • Building a enclosure to keep the warmth inside which prevents warping

I am planning on making more YouTube videos about these and other upgrades because it greatly improved the printing quality and I love sharing this with you so, if you are interested, here is a link to my channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCqfMW0tMZEciSXQym8x0EoQ

The quality of my last prints became increasingly worse and at first I thought this was because of the model, but even with prints I have done earlier it came out bad…

Example print printed with worn extruder gear

OK, this is some serious under extrusion and what I have not done is upgrading the extruder gear. I have read everywhere that if you print with abrasive filament, for example: metal filled filament or glow in the dark (yes that is abrasive), you must use a stainless steel or hardened nozzle. I could not find a lot about the extruder gear which is, in my case, made out of brass which is not known for its resistance against wear. So I removed it to see how this thing was doing…

Worn extruder gear

Yep, this gear has seen better days. OK, I can move this gear up a little to use a good part of it but I did not want to create under extruded parts again with this relative expensive filament. Therefore I bought a steel version from Bits and parts. And a similar part printed like this:

Example print with good extruder gear

I still have to find out that this gear will hold, but only time and a lot of printing (which will definitely happen) will tell. Another thing I have improved is that I use a bearing in the spool axes of my food (read filament) dryer instead of a fixed axes to decrease the force needed to rotate the spool. I think that this was the worst case scenario for this poor extruder gear. So, keep in mind that if you are planning to print with abrasive materials, you don’t overlook this gear.

Hopefully this article helps you with printing even better parts!

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