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X-axis crash/shift. Possible reasons ?  

New Member
X-axis crash/shift. Possible reasons ?

Hi all,

I'm completely new to 3D printing and bought my i3 MK3S a few weeks ago. It's now been assembled for 3 weeks and has done quite some prints since then. I haven't had any major issues until last night. For some reason it shifted a layer about 100mm to the right, causing the entire print to fail 3 hours into a 9 hour print.

I have no idea what caused this, so I tried resetting the printer and doing the entire calibration again. After successfully completing the calibration process I printed a very small test piece, with success. Thinking the issue was fixed I again started the print I was doing last night.

All went well until about 30 minutes into the print, when the extruder slammed into the right most position. When looking in Settings, it said it was at X=0.0 ... 

Being completely new to this, I'm not 100% sure how to handle this.
Could it be that the bearings of the X-axis are already worn out ?
Could it be something else ?
And what should I look for in order to find the culprit ?

Thanks in advance !

This topic was modified 5 years ago by andries.cafmeyer
Posted : 14/09/2019 3:17 pm
Veteran Member Moderator
RE: X-axis crash/shift. Possible reasons ?

The mk3 printer has 'Virtual' endstops, 
the printer drives the X and Y axis until it bumps into the of the travel distance and then calibrates itself based on that information...  

during the printing action, the printer also senses if the motor X and Y axis motor, stalls! this can indicate a collision.

Unfortunately  to complicate matters, the stepper driver can erroneously sense other problems and respond to them improperly...  

so, for example  if the X or Y bearing clamps are over tightened, the bearings can become hard to move causing either mis sensing of the endstop positions, or mis sensing collisions. 

similarly if your cable bundles catch on something, this can be signalled as a collision... 

so  suggestions... 

with your printer turned on, at idle. try sliding the extruder from side to side, the carriage should move smoothly with only a little resistance from the motor.... if it's jerky, or fails to travel full distance, investigate why...    may be bearings need lubricating? bearing clamps (Back of extruder carriage) may need loosening a touch, bearings may be failing, the toothed belt idler wheel mounting bolt may be over tightened, the X axis toothed drive wheel on the motor shaft may be back to front, or poorly adjusted, the Belt may be too tight...   there are many possible issues, 

if all else fails, try disabling collision detection. 

and re run the test print!

regards Joan


I try to make safe suggestions,You should understand the context and ensure you are happy that they are safe before attempting to apply my suggestions, what you do, is YOUR responsibility. Location Halifax UK

Posted : 14/09/2019 4:21 pm
Noble Member
RE: X-axis crash/shift. Possible reasons ?

+1 on check for X axis binding.

If you are like me - you did not lubricate your bearings when assembling. Consider this an opportunity. Oil is not a substitute.

My problem was those five bearing screws pinching the bearing. Loosening a quarter turn fixed my problem.

Posted : 14/09/2019 5:08 pm
PlanetV3D liked
New Member
Topic starter answered:
RE: X-axis crash/shift. Possible reasons ?
Posted by: Robert-mm200

If you are like me - you did not lubricate your bearings when assembling.

Yes, that is correct, I didn't lubricate because the manual states they are pre-lubricated and do not need any additional lubrication. While it's 'out of action' I will take the opportunity to do so. I'll see if loosening the 5 screws a quarter turn improves the free movement on the X-axis.

I'll keep you posted !

Posted : 14/09/2019 10:12 pm
Noble Member
RE: X-axis crash/shift. Possible reasons ?

You will know if it helps, just by sliding the X Axis from end to end.

Binding - bad.

Binding fixed by loosening screws - good. You are done.

Binding not fixed - keep looking. Sorry.

Oh - and Prusa seems to have reconsidered their "advice". New machines are being shipped with a tube of lube.

This post was modified 5 years ago by rmm200
Posted : 14/09/2019 11:44 pm
New Member
RE: X-axis crash/shift. Possible reasons ?

Two days of troubleshooting and this post saved me. 

Posted : 24/01/2022 4:19 am
Itamar liked
RE: X-axis crash/shift. Possible reasons ?

Few years later and you guys still helping many thanks.

Posted : 23/08/2023 1:36 pm