The answer to ALL of your issues with this Printer. PLEASE READ*

I have (2) Form1+ Printers. I pre-ordered, and received them in September of 2014. I can explain why ALL of you are having issues with your Equipment, and Parts Printed. It has to do with the Stepper Motor/Peel Motor.

FormLabs has a serious issue with their Stepper Motor Assembly. The Stepper Motor raises, and lowers the Tray Carrier. The Stepper Motor rotates an all-thread motor shaft, up and down. The Motor Shaft attaches to the Clevis, which is attached to the Tray Carrier. It looks as if the Clevis has been improved since the first iteration- but there is still one serious issue: The Stepper Motor Shaft rotates, and attaches to the Clevis, that does not rotate. On the Form1, applying Locktite to the Clevis-end of the motor shaft (as indicated in the Instructions) will prevent the motor shaft from rotating. On the Form1+, locking the set screw will prevent the Motor Shaft from rotating. Both situations will continue to ‘burn-out’ the motors.

IF YOU ARE HAVING PRINT RESOLUTION ISSUES: This is most likely the Stepper Motor trying to move the Resin Tank up and/or down- and eventually settling in an incorrect position- because the Stepper Motor cannot completely rotate freely, the motor must first ‘break’ the locktite or set-screw bond. From this point forward, your Resin Tank, sitting within the Tray Carrier, will be in an incorrect position, with a very minimal difference- relative to the Clevis Movement and Tolerances.

IF YOU ARE HAVING RESIN TANK ISSUES, OR YOUR TRAY CARRIER IS NOT MOVING: The Stepper Motor is finally burning out, due to the Clevis creating a frictional connection to the Stepper Motor. You will have to replace your stepper motor, which FormLabs should supply- but more importantly: you will have to reinstall a stepper motor (a very annoying task), with the original issue still unresolved. Thus, continuing your Printing until the Stepper Motor breaks again.

WHAT YOU SHOULD DO: I post this comment, not as an angry customer- but as a fellow 3D Printing entusiast and Maker. Am I frustrated? Yes, very much so- I purchased a product, and I expect it to work. Especially, when you have to repeatedly purchase consumables. I am sick of being a ‘Beta Customer’ for various Digital Fabrication Equipment (3D Printers, CNC Routers, Laser Cutters, etc.). I just want a company, to make a product that WORKS, for ONCE, PLEASE MAKE SOMETHING THAT WORKS! However, to some degree- this isn’t entirely the Manufacturer’s fault: while I expect quality; I cannot make this assumption when I pre-order an item that hasn’t even been released yet. Let alone, tested for quality and reliability. I would like all of you (FormLabs Customers) to review my theory above, and figure out a solution. We need a collar of sorts, that is free moving. A ball bearing part, Rotating Collar, or SOMETHING! Bonus points for those of you that figure out a 3D Printed Solution. The top of the Motor Shaft seems to be about 3mm (.118") in Diameter. The Collar immediately below, is about 4mm (.157).

Thoughts?

Sounds like some sort of anti-backlash nut is in order… like on the lead screws of a CNC.

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I must admit this is the first time i’m hearing about a stalled stepper “burning out”.

Never experienced that with any of the steppers i’ve used, including a tiny one similar to the one used for the peel in Form1+ and a bunch of NEMA17 ones, both cheap chinese ones and expensive japanese ones (Oriental Motors).

I’m not saying it’s impossible (with enough current anything is possible), but i’d say it’s not very probable (in a typical stepper work regime).

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