Saturday, November 7, 2009

Skeinforge update, chamber tool

The Chamber tool has been added, to send temperature settings to a heated bed or chamber. The 'Temperature of Bed' preference sets the temperature of the bed by sending an M140 command, the default is 60.0. The 'Temperature of Chamber' preference sets the temperature of the chamber by sending an M141 command, the default is 30.0.

Kulitorum has made a heated bed. It is a 5mm Alu sheet with a pattern laid out in kapton tape. The wire is a 0.6mm2 Konstantin wire and it's held in place by small pieces of kapton tape. The description and picture is at:

In my opinion, it is a brilliant design. The best thing about it is that the components it uses, kapton tape and heater wire, are already on the reprap parts list, so reprappers might already have them and if they don't they'll able to order some easily. I don't know if the tape and heater wire can be added to existing acrylic or MDF beds, but hopefully someone will try it out.

The 'Infill Perimeter Overlap' setting in inset has been moved to fill. The 'Extrusion Width over Thickness' setting in inset has been moved to fill and renamed 'Infill Width over Thickness'. So you'll have to reenter those settings in fill when switching to this version, if you have changed them from the defaults.


  1. You've done a lot of great work with Skeinforge, very important for the RR community! Thanks again!

  2. congrats with the new Skeinforge home :) I'm back from a very bussy few months working on an exhibition ( and am going to focus on reprapping again and working on the Skeinforge wiki manual!
    I'll trow in a small feature request. I have done some raftless prints, they work very well if your bed is ok. The only problem is that I need to manually add an extra line to the gcode of the first layer. This line acts as a startup run because often the first 50 mm are not sticking to the bed or too thin. So maybe a checkbox to add a line outside the perimeter of the printed object before starting the print?

  3. Unfold,

    Thanks for working on the manual. Something that would be useful would be to break out the tool parts into separate pages. That way people could have the option to go to the manual instead of the local tool page, when clicking on the help button or F1. There's no need to give every tool a manual page, if a tool doesn't have a manual page the help button or F1 would just send people to the local page.

    I'll add the splodge feature in the next update, which Bogdan has also requested. Until then, you can try activating oozebane and setting the 'First Early Startup Distance' to 50 mm. However, oozebane does not work well so I don't know how well this will work. I'm planning on replacing oozebane eventually and in the meantime I'm not fixing any problems it has, so if it doesn't work, you'll just have to wait for splodge.

  4. Enrique: As always, thanks for the fantastic job you've done with skeinforge. The new release looks great!

    One note: the "images" subdirectory exists in the .zip, but doesn't appear to be checked in to the svn tree.

    Unfold: We use the preface module to add a little gcode to warm up the head and extrude a little extra plastic; you could probably do something similar in the short term.

  5. Hi Amayer,

    Thanks for the note. Looking into the problem, I found that new folders did not display automatically in windows zip files, so I reloaded them, and added them to the skeinforge subversion folder.

    Also, please post your startup gcode on the skeinforge settings thread at:,27434

    I've edited the introductory post to say the settings thread is also a good place to post your skeinforge alterations scripts.

  6. Hi Enrique

    I have just started to use skeinforge with the latest 5D firmware using the E output. I noticed that if I change the export preferences selecting Gcode small to reduce all the multiple F output the E word is also omitted.

    Not sure if that is what you intended.
    Apart from that the output is really good and the ability to use a start file to setup for machine variations is excellent.

    When are you going to setup a method for users to make some kind of financial contribution?

    I am sure I am not alone in thinking your work deserves it. Reprap may be open source but it seems to me every one else involved is paid for their time. The Bath team clearly do some work in University time and MakerBot and Bitsfrombytes are both commercial

  7. Hi Ian,

    Thanks for pointing out the E that Gcode small removes the E word, it's fixed in the latest version at:

    I'm not currently planning on setting up a method to take financial donations, because projects that have asked for donations usually get only a small amount and because the majority of the donors would be reprappers who could use money donated to me to help their own develpment. Instead, I'm hoping that eventually the skeinforge manual at:

    would get enough page hits, that ads on it would get a significant amount of money. If this happens, I would puts ads on it and divide the ad money among all the contributors to skeinforge and the manual. If you want to help out, please break out the tool parts into separate pages and/or contribute explanations to the manual.

    The more people contribute to the manual, the sooner skeinforge developers & manual writers have at least a chance of getting some money.

  8. Hi Enrique

    I have moved on a little using E code in absolute.
    What controls the value of E?
    I expected it to match the axis move.
    For example
    G1 X200 E200
    G1 Y2 E202
    G1 X0 E402

    I have created my first job with a raft and the
    E value is much lower than the axis movement
    The Axis moves 28.44mm but E only extrudes 7.11.

    Have I misunderstood how it works?

    Minor point with E output you still output M108, M101 and M103 commands which are not needed with the E controlling extrusion.



  9. Ian,

    In absolute mode, the E code will be the distance of the axis move, except in places like raft where extrusionDistanceRatio lines are added to change the extrusion distance ratio on thick lines.

    Thanks for pointing out that in raft the axis move is greater than the E distance, when it should be smaller. After you made your comment, I looked at the extrusionDistanceRation in raft and realized there was a bug where I divided instead of multiplied. That is now fixed, in the latest version at:

    Indeed, the M101, 103 & 108 commands are not necessary with E values, however, I keep them because skeinforge uses them internally.


  10. Hi Enrique! I have I think a Skeinforge that is a couple weeks old, but I am having a little issue with using Tower - it builds the towers just fine but every once in a while it makes the head plow down into the tower it just made before moving horizontally to the location of the next tower, instead of moving horizontally first then down! Is this a bug you are aware of?

    By the way, great work with Skeinforge. It is highly useful!

  11. Nate,

    Try the latest version at:

    If there is still a bug, please send me your model and skeinforge preferences in a zip file. For this bug, also point out the line number where it plows down.


  12. Hi Enrique

    Many thanks for the raft E fix. The output looks good. Can't test at the moment as I have a machine problem.

    Adrian has just added M109 Snnn to the firmware.

    Same as M104 but waits for temperature to be achieved before processing next line of gcode.

    I wonder if you would consider adding this as an option at some time so the delay moves could be eliminated.



  13. Hi Enrique,

    I grabbed the new version of Skeinforge but it appears to have erased all my settings. I'm re-entering them from a backup copy but can't for the life of me figure out why it's putting the extruder threads so very close together in one single layer when they're spaced correctly everywhere else. Could you possibly take a look? My model, settings, and gcode output are in a zip file at - it's the second model layer laid down. The threads in the fill on that layer are ridiculously close together for a reason I can't figure out.

  14. Hi Ian,

    Thanks for pointing out that Adrian added the M109 code. I do not want to have the extruder wait in one place because then a blob will form so I will not add the M109 command. However, now that I know that Adrian is using M109, I changed chamber so that it now outputs M110 and M111 for the bed and chamber temperature, so that there will not be an M code conflict.


  15. Hi Enrique

    I am using version 2010-02-10
    I have dimension activated to generate extrusion 'E' code. I have raft activated. The raft feed is at 25% of normal feed rate. Which parameter controls this? With the extusion rate under E control it might as well be at full speed. I assume you slow down with fixed extrusion flow rate to give bigger deposit.

    I also noticed the first line of the raft has an E value of 104.328 even though there is no X & Y movement. Let me know if you would like me to email my settings and model.



  16. Hi Enrique

    I found the setting - Base Layer Thickness Over Layer Thickness. I notice the E value is increased by the ratio correctly so the feed could definitely be at full feed rate when dimension is activated.