kluge CostOfTheKludgeI have to take Cetus MK3 off my recommended 3D printer list. At lease until it gets some improved firmware The Mk1 and MK2 are a great bit of hardware Extremely accurate and capable movement, but still have some faults, like having no physical bed leveling.

The leveling, including the the electronic software leveling are not true bed leveling. The software leveling is simply for determining a nozzle height so an over-thick raft can be built level with head movement. Thicker in low areas, thiner in high areas. The plan is to compensate for a few tenths out of level.  In practice the Cetus bed can be several millimeters off level.

This all-but-eliminates printing without a raft.

What amazes me is all the Tiertime printers use this same method. The more costly printers DO HAVE mechanical bed leveling, so the auto leveling really is a belt and suspenders feature. Extra measure but not really needed.

The Cetus MK3 ROM can not handle g-code like the MK2 and MK3. Trying to run g-code, even the gcode made by their own "Catfish” advanced slicer, will crash the bed temperature sensing algorithm in the MK3’s ROM. Temperature reading and control go spastic, even after returning to UPStudio.

It happened when I first got my MK3 and it Just happened again after I changed hardware to fix the first issue. This time I was able (so it seems) to have recovered the bed temperature control.  I had to reset and refresh the ROM, Reload UPStudio, and let Cetus set for about a hour to cool down and it finally reset. 

I tried so many things I can not be sure exactly what provided the “fix”.  I don’t want to deliberately crash the OP system again just to find the simple fix, if there is one.

Cetus requires two major improvements to work properly beyond stock operation. 

  1. Mechanical bed leveling
  2. Proper g-code operation especially with Catfish. Tiertime’s own advanced slicer

Other issues are the feeble flat cable feeding the heated bed.  I have had two cable fails. The new perforated build plate is very difficult in raft removal and simply can not be used for  no raft printing.

The heated bed is bolted directly to the X-Axis linear bearing. The possible 100C+ (212F) bed heat is transfered to the bearing, linear rail, and into the printer case. I expect short life for the bearing if constantly running a heated bed. (Bearing lubicant vaporization)

I have had "run-away" Build Surface heating up to 180C and the printer case got so hot it shiut down on thermal overload.

All major Cetus issues stem from the primitive build surface plate and it’s simple bolt-to-the-bearing mounting system. No problem with an unheated build surface. A heat-isolated mechanically adjustable bed is needed. 

Cetus was/is an experiment in minimal hardware, so as not to compete with the major Tiertime product line. The MK1 popularity succeeded beyond expectation. However, the "advanced" Mk3 has become a Kludge. (Clik link if you do not know the meaning...)

I love the prints that Cetus will produce, but the MK3 machine can not (now) be recomended for the biginner.