The Creality CR-10 is an incredibly popular 3D printer that’s well known for its reliability and print quality. But what’s the max CR-10 print speed that you can pull off without messing up your prints?
That’s exactly what we’re going to explore in this post.
Realistically, the highest print speed you should set on your CR-10 is around 60 mm/s for PLA prints.
The 60 mm/s setting is a sweet spot as it’s still decently fast, but not too fast as to introduce vibrations and screw up your print.
Why you should max out the CR-10’s print speed at 60 mm/s
A 3D printer actually involves a lot of things happening at once, and increasing the print speed will depend on everything else in the printer needing to keep up with the nozzle.
That means the temperature must be hot enough to extrude enough plastic, the extruder must be strong enough to push so much plastic, and the stepper motors must be efficient enough to move so quickly.
Finally, printing at very high speeds can introduce unwanted vibrations into your prints due to the entire frame wobbling due to the fast movement!
When you can get away with high print speeds
The advertised print speed of the CR-10 3D printer is quite high, which is more of a gimmick (it’s really the mechanical print speed, not the fastest you can actually put down filament).
However, there are situations in which you can manage very fast prints without compromising on quality.
A fast print speed will work if you’re printing models that don’t require much detail or are largely boxy shaped. You can try setting the speed to 80 mm/s or even 100 mm/s and observe what happens.
This is because these models don’t need much retraction and travel: the nozzle is constantly laying down filament as it moves.
The moment you try to print something with more detail, though, you’ll run into problems.
If the nozzle is moving too fast, you may end up with stringing issues as the extruder is not able to retract the filament quick enough, so you’ll get unwanted dripping.
Conversely, you may have under-extrusion issues if the extruder is not pushing enough filament or the temperature is not high enough!
Middle ground CR-10 print speeds
If you do wish to increase the print speed as much as possible, one thing you can do is to set the outline speed to 50 or 60 mm/s, and increase the infill speed.
These settings are very easy to change in any slicer, though if you’re using Cura, you may have to access it from the gear menu that opens advanced settings.
Going fast on the infill is not a problem since it is all on the inside of the print. The outline(perimeter) must be printed properly in order to get a good finish.
This will probably make a 10-20% difference in your print times, so it’s worth a try.
When to use low print speeds
For any model that requires detail, you must use a low print speed, even if you’re using PLA. Ideally, as soon as your resolution is in the 0.01mm area, you should decrease the speed to 40 or 50 mm/s, especially if you wish to get lots of amazing detail in your prints.
Print speeds for the CR-10 and other materials
The settings above were for PLA. But what if you wish to print other materials?
Let’s look at TPU first, which is one of the most challenging filaments to print. TPU requires very slow speeds to print.
To successfully print TPU on your CR-10, you’ll need to lower the print speed to 20 mm/s or so and test the performance.
20 mm/s is a good place to start. If the printer seems to handle it like a champ and has everything under control, you can try to increase the speed in increments of 5 until you start running into issues.
One of the biggest problems with TPU is that it will begin to bunch up in the extruder and begin coming out of weird places.
Because the filament is not rigid, it can bunch up and snake out of the extruder bearing. You may come back to check on your print only to find that the nozzle is moving but the filament is coming out of your printer’s side!
Setting a low print speed will help prevent filament bunching up.
ABS and PETG
ABS and PETG are both materials that print quite similarly to PLA, so you can use a similar print speed as you did with it.
Optional upgrade: a 32 bit mainboard
The stock mainboard on the CR-10 can only handle so much information at once, so if you really want to push the limits of your printer, consider upgrading to a 32 bit board.
A 32 bit board has a lot more processing power and as a result can churn out much better prints at higher speeds:
Conclusion: test, test, test
The CR-10 and other budget 3D printers usually max out their reliable printing speed at 60 mm/s, as you saw. The only way to push your printer’s limits is to test what kind of models will work better at varied speeds.
You can use the information in this post as a benchmark, but you’ll need to find the sweet spot yourself.
If in doubt, though, stick to the standard speed and you’ll still print really good parts!