Well, I took delivery of a Creality Ender 3 just before Christmas and got it set up - that in itself took a few hours making sure I had got everything set up right - I didn't straightaway so had to get it set properly - the instructions weren't 100% accurate but no harm done.The prints coming off are pretty good and I am now starting to think about moving away from the PLA plastic that I first got (because it is the simplest) and going for a more flexible plastic. I have essentially reached Janet and John level where I can follow instructions and am just starting to think about what I can use my rudimentary skills for. The Creality is pretty easy to use - put the 3D drawing into the appropriate software that "slices" it up, save that to a micro SD card and pop that into the printer.
The prints take an age to be completed - my first uses have seen print times of 4.5 hours for something that is 40mm x 40mm at the base and 100mm high but they are consistent and things of, IMHO, of great beauty.
I mainly use PETG on my Ender 3. It's almost as easy to print as PLA (can be a bit stringy) but performs better in places like hot cars.
When you say "more flexible" to you mean more like TPU rubber? The usual advice is thet you need a direct drive for that as the length of the bowden tube (approx 300mm) can cause problems with flexible filament, whereas the direct drive has the extruder motor mounted just above the print head, so the tube is only 50mm or so.
Proud to be a boring health and softy crap following sissie!
I was going to go for the TPU - I would like more resilience. I have been reading up on the Bowden tube and realise that an Ender 3 is not the ideal printer for TPU but I think I will give it a go - perhaps as a second step away from PLA with PETG as an intermediate step.
To shorten the Bowden tube down to less than 100mm will mean that I will have to make an adapter bracket to move the drive unit to be in a better position with less turning of the tube required - I don't think I will be able to get the drive directly above the printer head without changing the wiring or putting in a harness extension. If only I could find a device that could, say, print such a bracket...
My next big thing in this project will be to actually do the 3D design work for myself rather than buying it in - what I have done to date is more like the drawings made by a 2 year old when they have their whole fist wrapped around a crayon (and including the food stains).
Oooh. I love the internet. Just had a search for brackets for the Ender 3 and I am not the first to think that way - https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:3386628
I feel a print session coming on.
* grabs a load of 3D files to email to Jay *
I have nothing to do with BSAC any more apart from being a muggle member. So anything I write on here is likely to be complete bollocks. Hooray!