Just started using the Beta (code named: Soda) of Tiertime’s UP Studio 3 (UPS3) software. It is a slicer and machine control program for the Tiertime Printers. Presumably, it can also be configured for other brands of FDM printers.
I am using it with the three Cetus printers I own. A MK1 and two MK3 (one with the heated bed.)
Tiertime offered a slicer/control software they called Catfish. UPS3 is a direct outcome from the Catfish code. I have been “playing” with Catfish since it was released. It was not perfect, but it did work. One fault was it crashed the MK3 with the heated bed. Not ready for prime-time users.
UPS3 has fixed all the issues and runs all my printers just fine. The slicer is very fast (not a high priority on my list).
Every variable is adjustable. UP Studio prior to Catfish gave the user very limited variable control. Now the user can get into very serious trouble if they don’t understand all the functions that are now adjustable.
UPS3 is still in BETA and the documentation is far from existence. Reading Catfish information will be a big help. I think the look and feel of the UI will be adjusted before it leaves BETA. It’s not bad, but in my opinion lacks some of the “polish” of the earlier UP Studio releases.
Catfish and UPS3 both use a two step process for slicing and then machine control. The machine control is named “Wand” and is a definite separate program from the slicer. The slicer creates a task (.tsk) binary file that is used in Wand. Probably a binary gcode not editable by the user. The slicer will also create a text gcode that is NOT used for Wand.
I am liking what I see far better than the older UP Studio and fixes the issues in Catfish. It is now my choice for running my Cetus printers.
There is one "bug" I discovered and sent a discription to Tiertime. Large models create quite large task (gcode) files. My MK3 Cetus with the high powered print platform will heat the platform without temperature limit control when uploading a print file. Large (10MB) files can take 4-5 minutes to upload. The platform will exceed desired setpoint (60C) by 130 to 150% during large file upload. No problem with small files, But I create and print some big files.
Explore UP Studio 3 Beta: Soda for yourself. Find it here: https://www.tiertime.com/software/ .
UPDATE (11/9/2020) -- Jason Wu from the Tiertime help desk just informed me there is an internal high temp limit in Cetus. Here is his statement:
Since the file transfer is not completed, the machine did not know what platform temp it should go. So it will heat up base on an internal default temperature, which we set as 90C. The temperature control is still on.
I have an expensive Kerr Ultra Waxer 2 machine that is an electrically heated hand-held wax carving pen tool. It is used to sculpt wax in model and jewelry making. This is the base unit and services two pens. The empty holes in the top are for storing various shaped tool tips.
On each side are brackets for placing the hot pen when switching between pens. The brackets are held in place with a single screw and three plastic locating pins through the side of the case.
The machine fell off a small table where I had placed it as I was moving the table. The plastic bracket on the left side shattered from the two-foot fall to the floor.
It’s a small but rather complicated part. I made a sketch and took very careful measurements. I had a flat bottom, and this gave a good reference for locating the pins and holes.
I’ll admit I made two prints. The first one I missed a side pin placement my a few tenths of a millimeter. Easily corrected in Fusion 360 sketch and a new STL file was printed. About 80 minutes at 0.15mm layer and normal speed on my Cetus printer. Material is white PLA.
I gave some consideration to the hot pen storage and using the PLA plastic. I have a good STL file I could print again in ABS if needed. In use the bracket never gets warm. Should not be a problem.
This is evidence that I occasionally use 3D FDM (plastic) printing for practical applications. Not just Junque “stuff”.
Big Mama Cetus in Heat Again!
Tiertime - Cetus sent me (gratis) repair parts for my heated bed cable fire. It is a new accessory board kit which includes the accessory controller board and a new 20 conductor ribbon cable as well as the other kit parts like the white printed case and a power feed cord for the main controller board. All the parts in the standard purchase kit.
It was the 20-conductor ribbon cable that melted and burned. The end of the ribbon cable that connected to the accessory board showed evidence that it too had overheated. Indicating there was probable damage to the ribbon connector device on the accessory board. (large white horizontal bar left beow center in picture)
It was very good they sent both the board and the cables. I assume they are part of the standard accessory board kit.
I have replaced the parts and again operating Cetus with a heated bed.
There was a slight issue when I tried the first test print with the heated bed. After UP Studio sliced the print and sent it to Cetus, there was a small audible “clink”, Cetus stopped dead and UP Studio reported that Cetus lost connection. Very strange behavior. This behavior continued on three more attempts to run the test print.
Re-booting everything did not fix the issue. Then I used the manual pre-heat to test heating the bed. It heated the Cetus build platform exactly as expected. Then I went back to trying the test print again. This time it continued past the “die” point and the test print completed perfectly.
I believe the Cetus Processor does some very strange “caching” of its previous experience and/or setup. Its’s not been the first time I have seen the Cetus printer OS acting strangely. I believe it tends to use cached data without checking if a new “read” from UP Studio is available.
I usually do a “clear the SD” within printer setup and I know I didn’t do that this time. Probably the cause of the crash. I’ll remember next time.
Big MAMA Cetus is again a hot babe. Fingers crossed she doesn’t get too hot!
I use a CAD/CNC program call Vectric Aspire. Wonderful application for 3D style 3 and 4 axis design and production using overhead routers and milling machines. This project doesn’t use Vectric Aspire. Rather the user forum for this product generated a 3D print design idea.
A fellow in the “Vectric Design Lab” named Todd created this desk lamp. He uses “subtractive manufacturing” (CNC router) to create his design. I took one look and decided it would make a good “additive manufacturing” project for 3D printing.
If you open the video from Todd, the first part his microphone is off. Don’t be alarmed about no sound. He figures it out…
The video is rather long winded for non-Vectric users (and me) but skip towards the end and you can see the finished design. He says to modify and build it any way you want. So, I did…
My first version is an exact copy of Todd’s design. I had to dig deep in his Vectric carve files for dimensions. He uses 2D and 2.5D routing so there are no 3D parts. I redrew all parts from scratch in Autodesk Fusion360 (F360) to create 3D models of the components.
I had to experiment a lot in F360 to get good 7/8-9 thread design to print properly. I made the (prototype) screw knobs round like the original in RED PLA. Rather ugly. I called it my clown lamp. I later did three more sets of “bolts” in white with my new original design and using the very nice working 7/8-9 thread I developed in F360. PLA required a 0.040 gap between 1A and 1B dimensions. Thread design in F360 is a whole other topic for another day.
My STL files have the correct threads.
The lamp uses a battery “puck” lamp so there is no line voltage wiring. If you are interested in this design, you can decide alternative electrics if you desire. The head opening is 60mm and uses the “AAA” battery puck lamps of that size. Source Amazon.com.
The lamp is larger than it first looked to me. All parts were printed on the Cetus build platform, so a large printer is not required. Longest part is 6 inches (152.4 mm) The original lamp head nearly maxed out the build height on the Cetus, but the new design should not be an issue for any printer capable of printing the base or arms.
I built the original “Todd” design in white PLA with the red bolt connections. The color combination did not “grow” on me. I was re-designing the lamp and decided the white Ver.1 lamp needed the new design “knobs” in white. I now call it Ver.1.1.
Lamp Ver.2.0 (in black) removes a lot of material from Ver.1.1. I think it is more suitable for 3D additive manufacturing. The open jointed arm is plenty strong for the application. Version one was intended to be a simple project routed from solid wood stock. Todd recommends builders modify his initial design.
There can be many ongoing variations from my Version 2. The limitation question is: “How may battery lamps does one need?” I am good at two and hope to give them to someone. I can always print more if required. No need to build an inventory.
This lamp is a durable product. Not a minimalist material, lightweight display piece. I don’t try to see how much material I can save when printing.
I print at 0.20 mm layer height with (minimum) 3 layers top and bottom. Four would be better. Sidewalls are 0.50 mm print width with a 0.40 mm nozzle. The threaded connector bolts and nuts are printed with five (5) shells (layers) 2.5 mm (total) thick sidewalls. This is to produce good solid threads.
All other parts are three (3) sidewall layers (1.5 mm, total) thick.
Infill on arm components is 50% - 60% for added strength. Base and lamp head are printed 10% -15% fill.
PLA plastic is more than adequate strength and prints nice and flat. Feel free to experiment. Exotic materials like carbon fiber are not required but could be a printing brag point… Ha!
Other Design and Application Ideas
The head with puck light design can be used with a smaller base with no arm links. Just the two short stubs. Could be a good accent light for seasonal decorations. The puck lights can be purchased with colored LEDs and will produce many colors and variations as well as remote control.
The pucks are also made in various diameters. The larger use AA batteries for longer life. There are also low voltage A/C wired puck lights for more permanent lighting use. Variations on this theme are many.
The new design (Ver 2.) looks less like assembled from 2x4 lunber. I am happy with both. Puck lights can have other uses. Some of them can randomly change color and would be great for holiday decorative lighting. A base and head (no arm) could be used for decorative up-lighting. Many ways to use the lights and 3D printing.