The Anet 3D Printer is quickly becoming one of the more popular and affordable 3D Printers in the industry. These DIY kits were originally cloned from the Prusa i3 style of 3D Printer.
These are some of the cheapest kits available which is probably why they are so popular and they are actually really decent 3D Printers. That is – when you know what you are doing.
Here we will discuss some of the most common issues and mistakes I see Anet owners having.
Anet 3D Printer Installation Manual (it exists!)
Yes, there is actually an installation manual for Anet 3D Printers. What most people don’t do is check the SD Card that comes with the printer. That’s where they usually provide assembly instructions, STL models, and sometimes even software.
So don’t expect to get a printed installation manual and make sure to check your SD Card on your PC.
Unfortunately, most people won’t take that advice and will build their Anet before searching for instructions which can lead to the following issues.
Z-Coupler and Threaded Rods
I see this far too often with people thinking their threaded rods are too short.
This happens when the Z Couplers are not installed properly. When installing you want there to be a good distance between the shaft of the motor and the threaded rod. It’s recommended to insert the shaft and rod approx 5mm. This leaves enough distance for the flex coupler to you guessed it, flex.
Y-Axis Belt Installation
This can be confusing when putting these parts together. Especially when you don’t know about the instruction manual on the SD Card.
Also, be careful not to over-tighten your belt. Check and make sure you’re not flexing the acrylic frame. Pull the belt just enough to not sag and then use a Timing Belt Spring to tension the belt. These little springs are the safest way to tighten your belt without over-stressing the frame.
Bed Leveling – Nozzle Height
This is probably the most critical part of 3D Printing. The theory is that you want a slight gap between your nozzle and print surface about the thickness of a standard piece of white paper.
Check out this great tutorial from Thomas Sanladerer to see how to properly level your bed.
I also recommend adding some thread lock or Loctite to your bed screws to prevent vibrations from throwing off your dialed-in alignment over time.
Next, think about what you are printing on and what you need to make prints stick.
Sheet Metal Bed = Blue Painters Tape
Glass Bed = Elmer’s Glue Stick or Hairspray if your prints are not sticking
Typically when your prints look like this the most common problems are Speed or Belt Tension.
Sometimes when the belts are too loose or the printer head is moving too fast this will cause the belts to slip off the gears and lose alignment.
Be sure to check that you have proper belt tension and that you’re not running your prints at too fast of a speed.
Under Extrusion and Clicking
This is another common issue I see that is sometimes hard to diagnose. The printer does not extrude a steady flow of filament or the Extruder Motor is skipping steps (clicking) preventing smooth extrusion.
This usually comes down to temperature settings. Try printing a temp tower test and see if the issue keeps happening…
Other possible issues are motor overheating, improper pot amps or other just a clogged nozzle.
If you are looking for more information on Anet A8 printers I suggest you check out https://3dprint.wiki/reprap/anet/a8
This is filled with great information that will address advanced improvements, upgrades and other useful things about your printer.