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Old 09-02-20, 03:18 PM
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WYP WYP is offline
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Originally Posted by tgrech View Post
Looks great, what material are you printing with? I don't own my own but I've ended up designing a lot of enclosures for projects with the initial designs going to 3D printing, I find using PETG can save a lot of headaches if you ever need to do higher accuracy stuff.

What did the new motherboard change of note, the drivers? Designed my fair share of stepper motor systems and usually I find upping the micro-stepping ratio worked wonders for noise if the load permitted, but I'm assuming with a load like this your limit is the drivers max setting anyway.
I upgraded the printer with a BigTreeTech SKR Mini E3, which is a plug and play upgrade board for the Ender 3. Nice and easy to get up and running.

The main changes are that it updates the Ender 3's mainboard to a 32-bit ARM processor and that it upgrades the stepper motor drivers to a set of TMC 2209s. Stock ender 3s use very cheap stepper motors.

I've only printed in PLA so far. Keeping it cheap and simple ATM. Will use better materials when I need to.

The processor side will help the printer handle increased g-code complexity and the stepper motor driver will offer quieter operation and reverse voltage protection. The TMC 2209 stepper motor driver will help increase accuracy by reducing the vibrations that the Ender 3's stepper motors make and by preventing reverse voltage from causing unwanted artefacts. (Some people fix this with TL smoothers, but better motor drivers threats this problem at its source and reduced noise levels).

I'll post later with some images of some before and after test prints. I printed benchy boats before and after.

Update -

Some pictures of the SKR Mini E3 1.2 installation. Sadly, I didn't take a picture of the new board inside the printer (facepalm).

You know it's a legit BigTreeTech printer if you get a rubber ducky.

With thie BTT SKR Mini E3 1.2, you will get the board, a 128MB SD card (you can just use the 8GB card that you get with the Ender 3 Pro), a USB cable for updating the motherboard with new firmware and heatsink for the board's new stepper motor drivers.

Here's the new motherboard. It contains some extra connections for upgradability, supporting the BL touch without the need for motherboard modifications.

Here is an image of the old motherboard for the Ender 3 Pro. The install is very simple. Most cables are just plugged into the same areas on the new board with no real exceptions. You will need to go online for a board layout schematic to see exactly where everything goes.

Had to remove some hot glue from the old board and its connections. This is easily done. Creality must glue these in because these systems are shipped internationally.

Sadly, I didn't get a pic of the new motherboard after it was installed. It basically looks the same, but with a black PCB.

Impressions -

1, This motherboard has made the printer very quiet. The stepper motors don't make much noise anymore, but this has made the noise made by the system's fans a little more annoying. Before then the motors were the big noisemakers. Now the Ender 3 Pro's PSU fan is the loudest component, but it is only enabled under some situations.

2, Installation was easy. Just disconnect power, disconnect the PSU from the motherboard and then replace the motherboard. Could be done within the space of 15-20 minutes if you have watched a guide.

3, After installation, connect power and you are ready to print again. The Ender 3 will basically work as normal after that. There are some minor UI changes, but these are easy to relearn. Had it printing again within an hour.
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