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My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode  

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SeattleDavid
(@seattledavid)
Estimable Member
My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

My XL5 experience has been bad. Now it died in a most terrible way.

When the right-rear motor operates it makes a loud buzzing noise. The printer cannot probe the bed, and cannot home. Flashing red lights and various errors appear. When powered down and when I manually move the head everything seems smooth. Did the motor driver fail? (Happens for any off the tools, so it is common somehow.)

Pretty much from start to finish my XL5 experience has been a bad one. So many red screens, "battlebots" head fights, and other errors. I truly wish that I hadn't purchased it.

This video shows the error happening while probing the bed and you can hear the loud motor noise. (The motor noise wasn't there when the printer was brand new.)

IMG_0521 IMG_0543 2

Best Answer by SeattleDavid:

My XL5 printer couldn't get past either homing or the bed probing. Nothing printed, ever.

I spent 90 minutes with technical support who then indicated that an XL specialist would need to get back to me. Nobody ever got back to me and after waiting three days I decided to ask for a refund.

I would now like to put in a very positive word for Prusa Customer Service:

After I requested a refund, Prusa has been most polite and service oriented. They didn't argue or haggle with me. They have responded promptly to my procedural emails. The process is:

  1. I didn't keep the box, so they are mailing me a new box to pack up the printer.
  2. They have provided Prusa-quality step-by-step instructions on how to pack the printer back up.
  3. They ask that I photograph the printer and send them the photos before sealing the box up.
  4. They will email me a prepaid return label.
  5. I will ship the printer back.
  6. They will issue a credit according to their return policy.

While, of course, I am very disappointed that the XL5 simply didn't work, Prusa Support has been good. My feelings about Prusa are:

  • They want to be a quality company. They provide quality Customer Service.
  • The XL5 printer still has some serious issues. It's a massively complicated device and I can see why these problems are difficult and may be impossible to resolve. The machine is just incredibly (unnecessarily) complicated.
  • The XL5 is probably an internal nightmare that they can't end. Discontinuing it would be egg on their face. What they can do is delay, shift orders to the Mk4, and hope to get lucky on the complexity issues. I think they will eventually solve the XL5 problems, but the smarter decision may be to shut down the XL5 program as much as possible. (This is just an opinion of mine, and I may be over-reacting.)
  • Prusa's bread and butter is high quality, reliable, relatively simple machines like the Mini+ and Mk4. They are good at this. Those are great machines. The XL5 is a little bit like Ford deciding that they are going to build a space station hotel. Somewhat, it is that the XL5 is massively complicated when compared with other Core XY machines like the Bambu.
  • I also feel that Prusa has a bit too much NIH (Not Invented Here) syndrome. Their insistence on manufacturing their own boards, rather than having them build by Chinese who are the world leaders at PC Board manufacturing is a mistake. A company should do what it is best at. look at Apple: They don't build their PC Boards, but they do design them. Prusa has gotten into areas where it lacks and cannot maintain expertise (especially with the XL5.)
  • Prusa seems to be brain constrained. Too few true-engineers. Their engineering staff and average IQ doesn't seem to have kept up with their size.

Companies go through growing pains like this. The strong ones re-think who they are and what they have core capabilities at. In hindsight the XL5 may have been a mistake, but it will probably be a survivable one.

When I compare the XL5 to the Bambu Labs X1C, it is clear that Bambu has the more manufacturable product. However, it is unclear if Bambu Labs can make enough profit to stay in business and offer quality technical support. On the other hand, Prusa's relatively high prices and focus on quality Customer Service will allow them to survive and get over the speed bumps like the XL5.

All of these words are intended to be complimentary of Prusa. I think they are a surviver and will make it through this.

Thank you, Prusa

Posted : 15/10/2023 9:09 am
SeattleDavid
(@seattledavid)
Estimable Member
Topic starter answered:
RE: My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

Prusa support:

  • "Upgrade to firmware 5.0.0". (Which hasn't been released and isn't available. Did they forget the problem was related to the XL?)
  • "Lubricate the rails" (Which didn't help. The buzzing sounds is coming from the right-rear motor when either the X or Y axis is moved and the other axis is not moving, so it cannot possibly be rail friction.)
  • "Run the Self Test" (Which one? There are many.) No answer. (I ran the XY calibration and load cell and they passed.)

It's been 90 minutes of no progress. I have the feeling that the support rep has minimal experience with the XL because he is using the most basic of troubleshooting requests and there is a multi-minute wait every time I respond.

I think this video conclusively demonstrates that the buzzing isn't frictional from one of the rails:

IMG_0557 - Buzzing in X and Y direction

 

Posted : 15/10/2023 11:02 am
Pintie liked
SeattleDavid
(@seattledavid)
Estimable Member
Topic starter answered:
RE: My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

Every time (100%) that the build plate is probed, one of these errors happens when touching the build plate.

My XL5 is useless. So far, technical support has been unable to help except to suggest that I update to (unavailable) version 5.0.0.

Posted : 15/10/2023 12:31 pm
GuyH
 GuyH
(@guyh)
Reputable Member
RE: My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

You’re having a shockingly bad experience. No wonder you’re frustrated. Why are they advising 5.0 when it’s not available. Very odd

Posted : 15/10/2023 12:45 pm
M.J. Caboose
(@m-j-caboose)
Trusted Member
RE: My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

That's sad ... I can understand your frustration.

The sound reminds me of a broken driver ... But this is very difficult to tell without looking at the signals to the motor ...

You might want to check the cables between motor and board and reseat the connetor ... It is worth a try .. even when it is unlikely since a 2-phase stepper hardly won't turn at all when one phase is missing completely. But since it is mechanically linked to the other stepper it might behave like that.

I don't know what equipment for electrical checks you have available ... but if you can, you might want to measure the two coils of the stepper motor at the disconnected connector ... you should be able to measure to "resistors" of a few ohms between two pairs of the cables.

Another check that might be helpful to identify the problem ... when moving the axis while the steppers are not energized ... is it smooth or do you have the impression that they are moving very hard or unevenly? They will require more force than the bed or extruder on an MK3/MK4 due to the interactions between X and Y ... but you had to move them for calibration anyway ... does the movement still feel similar or got it much worse?

Those are things that would help to understand the problem more in detail ... or even lead to an issue (for example a broken wire in the stepper cables) ...

- Made by me -

Posted : 15/10/2023 1:30 pm
Oliver liked
SeattleDavid
(@seattledavid)
Estimable Member
Topic starter answered:
RE:

When the printer is powered off the head moves easily in the XY directions, like it did when new, with very little effort.

When powered on, the noise comes from the rear right motor. It is clearly coming from the motor. The left rear motor is quiet.

——-

I think they either recommended upgrading to 5.0.0 because the tech forgot I had an XL and spaced out thinking it was a Mk4 or else I was expected to wait until 5.0.0 became available. Not sure which.

——-

Oh, the experience has been bad from the start. I experienced a number of “red screens of death”. (Documented in another post of mine.)

This has been a miserable experience.

Posted : 15/10/2023 2:39 pm
M.J. Caboose
(@m-j-caboose)
Trusted Member
RE: My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

Ok ... so a mechanical issue is unlikely from my point of view ... This leaves the motor / Motor cable / Motor connector ... Or at the end ... the driver on the main board.

Later you can check by placing the axis in the center (y & x) and connecting the the motors the other way around ... But as far as I remember the cables won't be long enough to do so without any serious messing around I am agraid ... But that way you can recognize in the first moving moments whether the sound changed side (==> Driver) ... or whether it stays on the right side (==> Motor) ...

But caution !!! ... since the axis are messed up now, press the reset button right after you recognized the sound ... otherwise you might crash into someting you don't want to. ...

If this is not possible you still can measure the motor with a regular ohm meter ... since it moves freely a mechanical damage is unlikely ... so you should be able to measure a broken wire or coil ... If the motor tests fine with two similar resistors between wire pairs (don't know the color code of the four wires out of the back of my head, but the combinations are limited 😉 ...) it more likely is a driver issue.

 

- Made by me -

Posted : 15/10/2023 2:47 pm
SeattleDavid
(@seattledavid)
Estimable Member
Topic starter answered:
My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

The problem seems to be a result of the rear right motor. Some observed oddities:

  • When the head is being moved at higher speeds, everything sounds normal. The buszzing is only when moving "carefully", slowly.
  • When moving diagonally (which is done with a single motor) there is noise in one diagonal direction and not in the other. Again, this points to a motor/driver problem.
  • The chassis vibrates significantly in unison with the buzzing. The buzzing is roughly in the ~50Hz to ~60Hz range (as per only my ear.)
  • I get crash notifications during probing, with the head not moving in either the X or Y directions.
  • The Calibration self-tests PASS in the XY direction and the load cell.
  • The problem happens with tool 1 or tool 2. It does not seem to be tool related.

The support department ended with: "We will need to check it with the XL specialist and get back to you by email". (Apparently the support person was not an "XL specialist" which explains why it was 5 minutes every time I responded to him. (Total chat time almost 90 minutes.)

Others are having problems, such as: Other user's having problems

When the problem FIRST started happening, tool 1 was fighting with tool 2. See: XL5 Battlebots

 

Posted : 15/10/2023 3:12 pm
SeattleDavid
(@seattledavid)
Estimable Member
Topic starter answered:
RE:

When the problem first started, tool 1 and tool 2 were having a Battlebots competition. Here are videos:

  1. IMG_0521
  2. IMG_0520

 

Posted : 15/10/2023 3:20 pm
tsamisa
(@tsamisa)
Estimable Member
RE: My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

I think we are missing the point here and so does Prusa. As i understand he bought an "assembled" printer.A device which should have installed all the necessary stable version of firmware and be ready to be used with no bugs. Its under warranty, From the first moment that problems of this caliber arose, Prusa SHOULD SINCE IS UNDER WARANTY send a courier service with an appropriate package to receive it (shippimg expenses and packaging their problem) and send a new working one. I have a semi 5h and thank god i didnt give 500E to Prusa for an assembled printer that needs another 2h post assembly. No user should have to troubleshoot load cells, motors, divers, boards on a brand new 4k product. That is ridiculous. This is NOT the customer service that worths the premium Prusa charges. No i dont want to update the firmware on a brand new device. I dont want to measure ohms, tensions, loosen or tight screws. If someone is paying for an assembled product it should work near flawlessly out of the box. It doesnt? Replace it. Or by next year when other companies absorb your customers don't wonder why.

Posted : 15/10/2023 4:02 pm
Mitch, M.J. Caboose, Asus1357 and 1 people liked
SeattleDavid
(@seattledavid)
Estimable Member
Topic starter answered:
RE: My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

Prusa SHOULD send a courier service with an appropriate package to receive it (shippimg expenses and packaging their problem) and send a new working one.

I am in full agreement with this.

The printer clearly had problems right out of the box, with "Red Screens of Death" being reported on first power-up.

Prusa support has escalated this to an "XL specialist" via email.

Interestingly, when my order got to the top of the queue I asked Prusa (before paying) to hold the order until march. I didn't want an early unit or bleeding edge problems. I'll be out of the country from November to March. Prusa agreed, and I paid for the order and then they immediately shipped the unit to me. While it was fun to get the device early, these problems are exactly what I wanted to avoid.

I think, at this point, I just want my money back. Waiting two years, living through countless fibs about when the unit would deliver, and now finding that the product lacks quite basic features (like spool joining) tells me that this printer is not a priority at Prusa and promises nothing but grief in the future. I'm feeling burned by this experience. I own four other Prusa printers and feel that the company has changed...the reality is quite different from what J. Prusa thinks it is.

 

Posted : 15/10/2023 6:40 pm
Mitch liked
Papy_Yosh
(@papy_yosh)
Active Member
RE: My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

 

Posted by: @seattledavi

I think, at this point, I just want my money back. Waiting two years, living through countless fibs about when the unit would deliver, and now finding that the product lacks quite basic features (like spool joining) tells me that this printer is not a priority at Prusa and promises nothing but grief in the future. I'm feeling burned by this experience. I own four other Prusa printers and feel that the company has changed...the reality is quite different from what J. Prusa thinks it is.

 

I feel your pain. I have had mine for 40 days and I don't know what it is to have running XL yet! I am so mad at support! they are so bad. How can I go from a wonderful Prusa experience to a nightmare like that? That machine was rushed and far from being tuned...

I would gladly let go of my XL if I could get my money back too.

Posted : 15/10/2023 7:12 pm
Tobycwood
(@tobycwood)
Estimable Member
RE: My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

Man… I feel your pain…

A suggestion… or at least something I would try…

Do you have a gcode file that has already printed ok? Or… the keychain fob sample that came on the thumb drive? See if they print without the issue.

Posted : 18/10/2023 5:18 pm
Tobycwood
(@tobycwood)
Estimable Member
RE: My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

IME… prusaslicer is not all that perfect and it combines presets between different printers sometimes. Be sure to use the XL5 preset and be sure to use the presets print quality settings in the pull down menu on the plater view.

Posted : 18/10/2023 5:23 pm
SeattleDavid
(@seattledavid)
Estimable Member
Topic starter answered:
RE: My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

My XL5 printer couldn't get past either homing or the bed probing. Nothing printed, ever.

I spent 90 minutes with technical support who then indicated that an XL specialist would need to get back to me. Nobody ever got back to me and after waiting three days I decided to ask for a refund.

I would now like to put in a very positive word for Prusa Customer Service:

After I requested a refund, Prusa has been most polite and service oriented. They didn't argue or haggle with me. They have responded promptly to my procedural emails. The process is:

  1. I didn't keep the box, so they are mailing me a new box to pack up the printer.
  2. They have provided Prusa-quality step-by-step instructions on how to pack the printer back up.
  3. They ask that I photograph the printer and send them the photos before sealing the box up.
  4. They will email me a prepaid return label.
  5. I will ship the printer back.
  6. They will issue a credit according to their return policy.

While, of course, I am very disappointed that the XL5 simply didn't work, Prusa Support has been good. My feelings about Prusa are:

  • They want to be a quality company. They provide quality Customer Service.
  • The XL5 printer still has some serious issues. It's a massively complicated device and I can see why these problems are difficult and may be impossible to resolve. The machine is just incredibly (unnecessarily) complicated.
  • The XL5 is probably an internal nightmare that they can't end. Discontinuing it would be egg on their face. What they can do is delay, shift orders to the Mk4, and hope to get lucky on the complexity issues. I think they will eventually solve the XL5 problems, but the smarter decision may be to shut down the XL5 program as much as possible. (This is just an opinion of mine, and I may be over-reacting.)
  • Prusa's bread and butter is high quality, reliable, relatively simple machines like the Mini+ and Mk4. They are good at this. Those are great machines. The XL5 is a little bit like Ford deciding that they are going to build a space station hotel. Somewhat, it is that the XL5 is massively complicated when compared with other Core XY machines like the Bambu.
  • I also feel that Prusa has a bit too much NIH (Not Invented Here) syndrome. Their insistence on manufacturing their own boards, rather than having them build by Chinese who are the world leaders at PC Board manufacturing is a mistake. A company should do what it is best at. look at Apple: They don't build their PC Boards, but they do design them. Prusa has gotten into areas where it lacks and cannot maintain expertise (especially with the XL5.)
  • Prusa seems to be brain constrained. Too few true-engineers. Their engineering staff and average IQ doesn't seem to have kept up with their size.

Companies go through growing pains like this. The strong ones re-think who they are and what they have core capabilities at. In hindsight the XL5 may have been a mistake, but it will probably be a survivable one.

When I compare the XL5 to the Bambu Labs X1C, it is clear that Bambu has the more manufacturable product. However, it is unclear if Bambu Labs can make enough profit to stay in business and offer quality technical support. On the other hand, Prusa's relatively high prices and focus on quality Customer Service will allow them to survive and get over the speed bumps like the XL5.

All of these words are intended to be complimentary of Prusa. I think they are a surviver and will make it through this.

Thank you, Prusa

Posted : 18/10/2023 6:23 pm
Fent liked
RAH1
 RAH1
(@rah1)
Estimable Member
RE: My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

@SeattleDavid,

What a difference a day (or 2 months), makes.  I placed my order during week 3, and got my XL5 Semi-kit in December and assembled it once I cleared space in my farm in January.  Since then, I have had a few calls with Prusa, some issues related to my learning curve, and a 3 bad parts (They immediately shipped them).  I admittedly had better experience with most of my other Prusa Printers (2 MK3S kits, and one fully assembled Mini).  Prusa Slicer is ALWAYS getting better and firmware is updated about once every other month early on with Prusa Printers.  I keep up with updates and other issues with the Prusa Blog and Prusa Live.

I certainly understand the BLEEDING edge issues you mentioned.  If you don't want early equipment then buy it after a year or so.  All in all I am rooting for Prusa to succeed with the XL.  It's a very decent machine.  My bet is that there will be some issues that will be released with the + edition sometime next year.

If you think the XL is complicated just wait until you try the Input Shaper in Slicer, (which BTW, works with the MK4).  It is in the release of Prusa Slicer as a BTEA test.  There are quite a few bugs in it.

Prusa always gets it right eventually and asking them to abandon the XL is not going to happen.

Just my 2 cents.

RAHRAH

 

I am the inveterate tinkerer. I can tink up most anything.

Posted : 30/01/2024 3:58 am
czwcork
(@czwcork)
Active Member
RE: My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

That's my sentiment too... XL is simply not ready. The "always perfect first layer" on my printer can vary from too close to too far in 5 cm distance. Technically i can use the front left part of the printer, the rest either too close (wavy lines) or too far (separating lines). Print surface quality is bad:

I don't really know, what to say, I'm waiting for heat bed replacement, then I'll try to tackle all the other issues, but it feel wrong to tinker weeks with a 2.5k+ EUR machine, while the competition can deliver better/faster printer for 60% of the price or less... I'm currently looking formbot marathon, 1200 USD, two head (my XL is two head) and I'm thinkig to ask for refund...

Posted : 25/02/2024 12:03 pm
ntdesign
(@ntdesign)
Reputable Member
RE: My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

That's not normal. If you got a fully assembled unit, try to return it as it should obviously not have passed QC like this. If it's self assembled look around the forum for a fix, there have been others with similar issues.

Posted : 27/02/2024 10:31 am
RAH1
 RAH1
(@rah1)
Estimable Member
RE: My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

@ntdesign,

Most if not all of the issue with my machine have been some simple failures of part quality.  The testing procedure from the factory on kits is also to blame at some level.  I am currently working on issues related to a model that prints perfectly as long as I do not use Input Shaping.  I get great prints otherwise.  I agree that bleeding edge releases from Prusa are rocky to be charitable.  Stability is GREAT after they have been dialed in over time.  My hope is that this works itself out sooner rather than later.  I chalk it up to a steeper than necessary learning curve.  I have a lot of faith that Prusa will eventually get it right.

Just my take on it.

Happy Printing.

RAH

I am the inveterate tinkerer. I can tink up most anything.

Posted : 27/02/2024 9:00 pm
ntdesign
(@ntdesign)
Reputable Member
RE: My brand new XL5 just died: Video showing failure mode

Yeah, IS doesn't really work yet. His issues look like an assembly problem though, and having assembled my XL I think it might be near-impossible to figure out someone else's mistakes without taking everything apart. In case of fully assembled you can't reasonably expect the customer to do that, who paid extra premium for this service (possibly because he is not willing or capable to self-assemble). But in the meantime I saw him inquiring in another thread, so someone is probably helping already.

Posted : 28/02/2024 8:34 am
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