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Extruder clicking and clogging issues  

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Veritas
(@veritas)
Active Member
Extruder clicking and clogging issues

Last week I had a nozzle clog. Upon disassembling the extruder and taking out the PTFE tube I discovered it was clogged and unrecoverable. I bought some new PTFE tubing, cut it, and inserted it. Everything seemed to work great.

Now, my extruder will begin clicking intermittently throughout a print. Sometimes I can print for a few hours no problem, sometimes it will start clicking about once every 15 seconds, sometimes it will constantly click and the print will be completely ruined. I am unable to finish a 10 hour print at this point as I begin to have extrusion issues at various points throughout the print.  

At this point, I have tried:
- Cleaning the extruder completely. I disassembled, cleaned all the gears using a toothpick, blew compressed air in, etc. Everything looked completely clean. I have tried this multiple times.
- Multiple cold pulls to ensure there is no clog. Filament seems to feed perfectly fine.
- Trying different rolls of filament (using GST3D PLA).
- Trying different temps. 200, 215, and 225 all seem to produce the same issue.
- Checking the fans and wires - everything seems to be spinning as normal and the wires are intact.

I have been working with support for a bunch of hours but figured I'd diversify because at this point it's giving me flashbacks to my Ender 3. What else could I possibly be missing? Should I try replacing the PTFE tube again? Could the nozzle be damaged? Where could the problem be?

Posted : 12/09/2021 8:15 pm
cwbullet
(@cwbullet)
RE: Enclosure

Are you printing in an enclosure?  Enclosures lead to heat creep in extruders and PLA is very sensative to temperatures.  

--------------------
Chuck H
3D Printer Review Blog

Posted : 13/09/2021 10:00 am
Veritas
(@veritas)
Active Member
Topic starter answered:
No

 

Posted by: @cwbullet

Are you printing in an enclosure?  Enclosures lead to heat creep in extruders and PLA is very sensative to temperatures.  

No, and note that I have 23 print days on my printer without any issues.

Posted : 13/09/2021 1:54 pm
cwbullet
(@cwbullet)
RE: PTFE

I would try a new piece of PTFE.  If that does not work, try a new heatbreak.  If that does not work, try a new nozzle.  

--------------------
Chuck H
3D Printer Review Blog

Posted : 13/09/2021 2:14 pm
SebStar
(@sebstar)
Active Member
heatbreak

Most Extruder Clickings are caused by the Prusa modified e3D heatbreak.

I had this problem a long while ago and replaced the Prusa heatbreak wit an e3d v6 titan. I never had a sinlge click since then.

 

Posted : 13/09/2021 2:58 pm
NapalmZ
(@napalmz)
Active Member
gears

the bondtech gears are slipping. tighten the adjustment screw. 

Posted : 14/09/2021 2:11 am
Veritas
(@veritas)
Active Member
Topic starter answered:
Re

 

Posted by: @cwbullet

I would try a new piece of PTFE.  If that does not work, try a new heatbreak.  If that does not work, try a new nozzle.  

Already tried replacing the PTFE tube. Trying a new nozzle next (shipped today).

Posted : 14/09/2021 2:23 am
Veritas
(@veritas)
Active Member
Topic starter answered:
Re

 

Posted by: @napalmz

the bondtech gears are slipping. tighten the adjustment screw. 

Already checked, screw was tightened and nothing was slipping. Shame because it would have explained a lot.

Posted : 14/09/2021 2:24 am
cwbullet
(@cwbullet)
heatbreak

 

Posted by: @sebstar

Most Extruder Clickings are caused by the Prusa modified e3D heatbreak.

I had this problem a long while ago and replaced the Prusa heatbreak wit an e3d v6 titan. I never had a sinlge click since then.

 

I would go ahead and order a new heartbreak because you probably need it.  

--------------------
Chuck H
3D Printer Review Blog

Posted : 14/09/2021 2:25 am
Veritas
(@veritas)
Active Member
Topic starter answered:
Re

 

Posted by: @cwbullet

 

Posted by: @sebstar

Most Extruder Clickings are caused by the Prusa modified e3D heatbreak.

I had this problem a long while ago and replaced the Prusa heatbreak wit an e3d v6 titan. I never had a sinlge click since then.

 

I would go ahead and order a new heartbreak because you probably need it.  

Can you link me what I need to buy (I'm in the US)? Why would it be the heatbreak? What broke after 23 days of print time?

Posted : 14/09/2021 2:29 am
NapalmZ
(@napalmz)
Active Member
Extruder gears

 

Posted by: @veritas

 

Posted by: @napalmz

the bondtech gears are slipping. tighten the adjustment screw. 

Already checked, screw was tightened and nothing was slipping. Shame because it would have explained a lot.

 

Posted by: @veritas

Last week I had a nozzle clog. Upon disassembling the extruder and taking out the PTFE tube I discovered it was clogged and unrecoverable. I bought some new PTFE tubing, cut it, and inserted it. Everything seemed to work great.

Now, my extruder will begin clicking intermittently throughout a print. Sometimes I can print for a few hours no problem, sometimes it will start clicking about once every 15 seconds, sometimes it will constantly click and the print will be completely ruined. I am unable to finish a 10 hour print at this point as I begin to have extrusion issues at various points throughout the print.  

 

The clicking you are hearing is the extruder motor turning and the idler being jammed. It can't rotate, so the teeth click. Make sure the idler can free spin with pressure. This can be caused by warping of the idler door.

Bottom line, the bondtech itself is skipping. You can tighten it, or repair it. If it is causing underextrusion, your filament will soften further up in the hot end and will "ball" due to the MMU mod for the e3dv6 prusa edition. This will be compound with the low temperature resistance of pla and send the liquid plastic up the heatbrake. That is why you had to replace the PTFE tube. 

Drop the hotend and inspect the assembly. It may be a good time to dismantle it and clean it. New thermal compound won't hurt. Check the extruder assembly. Watch through the door when it is printing so you can see what I am telling you. Replace and repair any damaged parts. 

 

Lastly, what filaments have you been printing with?

Posted : 14/09/2021 9:22 am
Xanthe
(@xanthe)
Trusted Member
Not necessarily gears

Whilst clicking can be caused by the Bondtech gears, if the gears are fine and gripping the filament really well, then they can stop the extruder stepper from turning, this will cause it to loose steps and jump back 1.8° with a click.  I believe that with the Prusa firmware the stepper drivers should detect this and limit the clicking (does this apply to the 'E' axis as well as X,Y & Z?), whilst this the usual for these stepper drivers, it's controlled by the firmware and is not a guaranteed outcome under all circumstances.

Some of these problems can also be caused by using far too long a retraction distance, particularly if using a poor quality PL filament or too high a hot end temperature.  These problems can accumulate over time, so the printer my function for a long time then suddenly start to show problems.  The best solvent for cleaning degraded PL residue from many other other materials (including metals and PTFE) is dichloromethane.

Posted : 16/09/2021 11:00 pm
Veritas
(@veritas)
Active Member
Topic starter answered:
Update

Update: Replaced the nozzle and now I'm 7 hours through the 10 hour print without any clicking. I'm pretty sure my nozzle previous nozzle was busted (I tried 10+ cold pulls). Will post here if I find more issues. Thanks for all the help!

Posted : 17/09/2021 3:14 am
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