Pulse 3D Party Slicer

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How To: Setup a Slicer Profile for Pulse

No matter the slicer you use for your Pulse, a few settings are essential to form a working basis for the rest of your slice settings.
Tyler Anderson
April 10, 2020

Using a Pulse with other slicers

Note: These instructions are only applicable to D model Pulses. Slicers other than MatterControl are not supported on C model and earlier Pulses. S model Pulses (running Smoothieware) require a different procedure.

Note: It is still recommended that you do the initial setup of your Pulse and first test prints using MatterControl. This will make things easier when you reconfigure for another slicer.

See the simplified instructions for Cura if you are using Cura.

Summary:

  1. Change Start Gcode
  2. Define Machine Definitions
  3. Set Nozzle Offset
    1. M851 Z<Offset>
    2. M500
  4. Fine tune with Babystepping

Step 1 - Setup your slicer profile

First you will need to setup a slicing profile for the Pulse. It is best to use the profile of another printer as a starting point. A good starting point would be a profile for the Prusa i3 Mk2, which is similar to the Pulse.

The most important setting you will need to change is the Start G-Code. Copy the Start G-Code below. The critical part of this is the G29 command, which instructs the printer to perform the firmware bed leveling procedure. This will be done at the beginning of every print. Although it will take longer for a print to start, an advantage of this is that you can swap build surfaces without having to reslice your print.

This code also includes some variables in {} which are to be filled in by your slice engine. You may need to change these names to suit your slicer.

Start G-Code

G21

G90

M82

G28

M104 S{material_print_temperature_layer_0}

M140 S{material_bed_temperature_layer_0}

M190 S{material_bed_temperature_layer_0}

M109 S{material_print_temperature_layer_0}

G29

G92 E0

G1 X5 Y5 Z0.8 F1800

G1 X100 Z0.3 E25 F900

G92 E0

G1 E-2 F2400

Other Slice Settings

These are other critical settings that you will need to fill in. Different slicers may have different names for these settings.

  • Bed Size X
    • 250mm
  • Bed Size Y
    • 220mm
  • Build Height
    • 210mm
  • Nozzle Diameter
    • 0.4mm

Step 2 - Set the nozzle offset

Next we will need to tell the printer’s firmware the nozzle offset. If you already setup your printer in MatterControl, then MatterControl has already determined this value for you. If you have not setup your printer in MatterControl, then you will need to start with a baseline value and adjust it until it is correct.

To find the nozzle offset in MatterControl, first make sure that your printer configuration is visible by going to the vertical ellipsis (3 dots menu) in the top right. Then make sure that “Configure Printer” is checked.

Next, go to "Printer > Features" and look for "Probe Offset" in the Leveling section. Write down the Z value.

The page within MatterControl where the Z-Offset is stored. Take note that this value will be different for your individual Pulse
The page within MatterControl where the Z-Offset is stored. Take note that this value will be different for your individual Pulse

Now you must send some commands to the printer. You can do this either in MatterControl or in your other slicing program. To send commands in MatterControl, make sure the terminal is visible by going to the 3 dots menu in the top right and make sure that “Show Terminal” is checked.

Go to the terminal and enter the following commands. Replace <Z Offset> with the number you wrote down earlier.

M851 Z<Z Offset>

M500

This will tell the printer the correct Z offset and permanently save it to the printer’s internal memory. You will not need to do this again unless you make physical changes to your printer.

The Terminal is a straightforward window showing you all communication made back and forth with your Pulse or other 3D printer.
The Terminal is a straightforward window showing you all communication made back and forth with your Pulse or other 3D printer.

Step 3 - Babystepping

You can now try a print. If you find that the nozzle is too high or too low when printing the first layer, you can use the printer’s onboard babystepping function to adjust it while it is printing. In the LCD menu, go to Tuning and scroll down to the bottom to find the Babystep Z option. The babystepping value will only be displayed until you leave that screen. If you need to remember the value, write it down before doing anything else.

Babystepping changes made this way are not permanent and will not be used on the next print. To make the changes permanent, you will need to adjust the probe offset by adding the babystepping value that you used.

Experimenting with using a slicer other than MatterControl for Pulse is an interesting challenge but can be worthwhile if you are a regular user of another slicer. The transition isn't as simple as just changing the settings as listed here, but what is listed is absolutely essential in order to get the printer to operate properly. As each slicing program has their own way of creating Gcode, the slice settings won't be a 1:1 translation from one to the other, so in all likelihood you will need to do some testing to hone your slicing profile. I hope you enjoy using your new slicer and have success in your endeavor, best of luck!

Happy slicing!

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