A relatively common issue in 3D printing is the appearance of ripples, rings, or echoes after shapes in a print. Generally, these issues can be relatively easily overlooked as they aren’t particularly severe and can in some cases look intentional. If you don’t want to just accept this issue though it is possible to deal with, although it may take some time, depending on the cause of the issue.
How to troubleshoot ripples/ringing/echoes in prints
Often the cause of these ripples in prints is a lack of stability. As the 3D printer moves the print head, it can wobble the table it’s on causing echoes of printed shapes. Verify that you’ve placed your printer on a stable surface. If it isn’t, stabilise the table or move the printer to a stable surface.
Another common cause of ringing in prints can simply be that the printer is moving too fast. If stabilising the printer doesn’t help or fully resolve the issue, try slowing down the print speed. Remember with a slower print speed you may need to adjust other settings, such as the nozzle temperature, to ensure a stable print.
If neither of these tips completely resolve the issue, then it’s time to get your hands dirty and perform some maintenance. Before you do anything, you need to ensure that your printer is turned off, unplugged, and has cooled off. There are a number of very hot parts that can burn you if you’re not careful. The first thing to do is to test the linear bearings are running smoothly by checking that your print head can move smoothly in all directions. You should also check that the belts and bolts are tight. You may need to carefully clean or even replace some parts if necessary. Applying a drop of oil to the linear bearings to help them run smoothly is also a great idea.
Finally, if you’re still facing this issue, look for the “acceleration” and “jerk” settings in your printer’s firmware. The method of changing these will vary between printers, so you’ll need to research how for your model. It’s a good idea to note down the original value before you change it, so you can revert it easily if things get worse. Once you know how, try lowering the jerk value first, then the acceleration if necessary.
Ripples, ringing, or echoes in your prints can be relatively easy to ignore, but you shouldn’t have to ignore them. By following these tips, you should be able to resolve this issue in your prints. If you’ve got any other tips for addressing this issue, please let us know down below.