Quick guide to 3D printing

On this page, you will find step-by-step instructions that you should make to print out 3D figure!

In the chapters below, everything is done step-by-step and if something remains unclear, please read the corresponding content and description on the subpages above.

According to the instructions below, you can also make a small "checklist" for your printer to ensure that all preparation steps are completed!

As mentioned many timesbefore, every 3D printing starts with an idea or a need for some detail.

Before you print, think about:

2. CAD file

Now that we have on idea, we need to do this idea to real object!

As we already know, we have basically two options for CAD file:

Drawing in CAD program:

+ you can make detail for your precise need

+ you can make changes to shape and measurments

-need special skills and programs

-time consuming 

Download file at (cults3d.com, thingiverse.com, yeggi.com).

+ very fast

+ thousands of different models

-you can't change figure

-sometimes time consuming

cad bracket.webm
thingiverse bracket.webm

As you can see, both options have their + and -.  Which solution is right for you depends very much on what part you need and what function it has to fulfill.

3. Slicer program

By this point, one of the most time-consuming tasks of 3D printing, i.e. making/finding a CAD drawing is already done. In this step we essentially convert the CAD three-dimensional shape into the G code needed for the printer. We also set all the printing settings in the slicing program.

The three most important things about the slicer program:

In the video below, things are done relatively quickly and in the hands of an experienced user, it does work like that. In our example, it is also a very simple detail. The video also shows that the slicing program automatically configures a lot of things for us, nut it's just worth checking them over - in our sample video the infill was 10%, we put 20%.

Many programs remember the settings based on the last model, and that's why you should always check the basic parameters on computers with several users!

All printers work with an SD memory card. They usually come with adapters for USB connection when you buy them. You can also connect your computer to the printers via USB, but then you have to take into account that the computer must be connected during the entire printing process and must not go into sleep mode. In order to be able to use the computer conveniently or take it home, it is still practical to use an SD card and let the printer act on its own!


4. Preparing printer

Well-set printer needs very little work before printing. The main things should be reviewed:

Rolled well enough, nozzle tip clean?

In the video, we use ordinary window cleaning foam (glass cleaner) for cleaning. It contains alcohol and evaporates quickly from the work surface. Always read the manufacturer's instructions for more detailed cleaning. Some printer bases may have a special coating that also requires special care. In the video, we were also able to remove the cover of our printer, which makes cleaning easier. If the cover cannot be removed, be careful with cleaning. Using too much force can ruin the calibration of the work surface!!

Each pinter has a preheat function. It prepares the printer for printing by raising the temperature of the work surface and the printhead nozzle to 60C and 210C respectively (for PLA).

You don't have to use it directly, because when you press the print button, the machine always does it, but it speeds up the start of printing a bit, and in the process you can check if everything is correct and changes.

Ettevalmistus ja autolevel.mp4

Checking filament and heatbed level.


Adjusting hetbed level woth "paprer" method.



5. Printing

Printing itself is the least effortful job. You just have to hope that everything will work out and that's basically all 😊

3D printers always do a "cleaning round" somewhere around the work area before starting work. Usually there is some sort of back-and-forth movement.  Plastic is ejected from its nozzle and the machine cleans itself of old filament. Based on this, the user can see whether the filament is uniform and thus also whether the calibration of the work surface is correct.

The border around the part to be printed also shows the calibration and alignment with the plane.

99% of printing failures happen in the initial phase of printing, so you have to be very careful!

When all kinds of anomalies occur, it is often necessary to stop printing and find out their causes


Sd card insert and start

6. Post proccessing, usage

And if everything went as it should, you already have a 3D plastic part by this point.

Depending on the detail and its complexity, it may need some post-processing - correcting some edges with a pin knife or drilling over the holes.

The next step is to use the product you made, and be sure to already think of what to print next!

As you can see, our printable part turned out very well. One picture shows a delicate thread residue that should be removed by hand/knife.


Good luck and start experimenting!