Newbie Questions

As a complete newbie to 3D printing (BiQu B1) I feel out of my comfort zone joining a forum where everyone talks a “foreign language” so to speak. I wish there was a section of the forum for newbies like me to ask the really laugh-out-loud questions that maybe most newcomers want to ask but don’t want to embarrass themselves.

Anyway, I’ve got 7 or 8 separate questions for your entertainment but I don’t know where to post them. I feel they’d be best kept together, as in a Newbie section rather than scattered into the relative subject areas … filaments, maintenance, slicers etc.

Let me know how/where you’d prefer me to list them.


Welcome and don’t worry every single person here has been where you are. there is a tech help section just for the B1 (BigTreeTech Biqu B1 - 3D Printing Space) as well as forums for parts/filament/slicers but I suppose if you want all these questions in one place the general forum is probably the best. don’t worry you’ll get answers to everything.


OK thanks Glenn. I’ll just carry on with this entry for the questions.

By the way Jason said in a recent video they now have 5 of the BiQu’s so maybe I made a good choice.

Before I start with my questions I’m curious about a white filament that was a freebie with the printer. It gave a nice finish to my first parts and I’d like to get more. Anyone know what it is or where to get it? After that ran out I basically threw a dart at the wall and ordered a spool of Duramic PLA plus. Seems to work fine.

OK, without further ado here are my questions.

Question 1

Bed Levelling

The printer gives a squawk every time I power up to tell me that bed leveling wasn’t done and ABL(?) has been invoked … Or something like that. I took the time to set it up according to Jason’s installation video and on occasion (twice in 2 weeks) I’ve used my sheet of paper to re-check and nothing has changed … Still perfect. Is there something I’m missing?

Part B … Should I be looking into an add-on levelling device I see being used and why?

Question 2

Shutting Down Printer

After a hard day printing steam locomotive parts I let my print bed and head cool to room temp and switch it off. In the morning I just power it up and feed it more parts. Naturally it just waits to get everything up to temp. then starts printing. No problems.

Should I be doing anything different at shut down?

What about longer delays … a week or more?

Should I be cleaning out the print head manually, different filament, not at all?

Question 3


Everyone here seems to be interested in replacing/upgrading parts or firmware and I can see that might be fun if you understand this stuff and why to do it. I used to enjoy that with desktop computers. My BiQu is working perfectly at the moment and I wouldn’t know where to begin as far as upgrades go. Is this a case of “Ignorance is Bliss”?

Can I just go along using my machine as they built it? Are there parts out there that would make it a better machine?

Should I be stocking up on parts that will potentially fail? Which parts?

Question 4


The steel plate that comes with the printer seems to do a good job of adhering to the parts (or vice versa) but I’ve taken a tip from others that a can of hair spray from the Dollar store is an effective “glue”. After every few prints I wash the plate off in the sink with hot water and it becomes pristine again. I’ve only had one part disconnect itself and it was very long, tall and thin (I had a girlfriend like that once) … 180x55x2 and I was printing it with the 180x2 on the plate. It came off in the last few passes. I re-drew it with a 10mm “foundation” and I’ve printed several of them just fine. BTW I went vertical instead of flat on the plate because I get a much finer finish to the surface.

Question … Is there an alternative or better adhesive?

Question 5

Print Speed

I found a button on the control panel that lets me increase the printing speed … Nitrous!

I drew a test cube and printed it at various speeds from “normal … 100%” all the way to 185%. The print head was really flying at 185 and I was just scared to find out what the red line really is. Still don’t know. To my great surprise I couldn’t see any deterioration in the surface finish from slowest to fastest.

Question … Am I putting a lot of strain or wear on the machine to run this fast? Is there a down side? So far I haven’t been is any hurry to produce a part so I’m content to run at 100%.

Question 6

Head Temps

The printer has a default temp (180?) for the head and 50 for the bed. I’ve been playing with two slicers, CURA and IdeaMaker, and I’ve tailored them to recognize the BiQu. However, both have their own ideas on what should be used. Then there’s the filament itself which recommended that I print it at 220. Sometimes when I start a print I’ll bump up the temp at the panel … or maybe not. Bottom line is that it doesn’t really seem to matter where I select in that 40 degree range … Everything comes out just fine.

I guess I don’t really have a question here just an observation.

Question 7


As mentioned elsewhere I installed CURA and Ideamaker … don’t ask me why. I’m slowly getting to know my way around in them but IdeaMaker has menus that explode exponentially and take me down a rabbit-hole of bewildering choices.

Now, I tailored both of these to know that I have a B1Qu and I see my printer is identified. I’ve played with speed and temperature settings in IdeaMaker but when I start that print the printer doesn’t pay any attention to those settings and it’s as though they weren’t transferred over. Is there something obvious that I’m missing?

Is there a slicer that would be a better fit for my printer or for me?

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Thats some kind of silk PLA it came with mine too.

Look inside your. Movement menu for ABL and turn it off. It’s looking for a leveling sensor thats not included with the printer

If you store it away the yes. Take out the old filament and clean it. Look up cold pull in google there’s a lot of tips. It means to let the filament cool. Then warm it up somewhat and pulling the partially melted filament out and it takes any junk with it.

If you are going to put it away for a couple of days with PLA on it it’s likely ok but with any other plastic-like petg or abs you should store the filament in an airtight case with desiccant. They all absorb water but the harder to print filaments will be worse.

Hit a 3 reply limit.

I use hairspray too but spray it outside if the printer it sticks everywhere. I don’t need it with pla or petg for the most part but if it’s a weird part that needs grip I use it. Soap and water does indeed clean it off

Upgrades, I have a printer that is stock it is approaching two years now. If there printer is working well and nothing is wrong there is no reason to modify it. You are better off waiting learning what works and what doesn’t them altering it straight away.

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I recommend trying out a few slicers and see which interface is the most comfortable for you to use.

I usually tell people to try Cura first, I personally like how the menus are laid out and I like the user interface.

As another option, you can try out Prusa Slicer, its another popular option. When I was first starting off I found the interface a bit confusing, so I usually say to start in Cura, but this is another great option.

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Adhesive IMO hair spray is a bad idea, there propellents are seriously flammable. I think it was Keith mentioned over spray gumming up everything. The end of the day most hair sprays are PVA or similar (vinyl in solvent ) this is the same as most glue sticks, low toxicity, non flammable and more environmentally responsible. Oh and way cheaper. My suggestion if you need a helper for adhesion a little glue stick smeared around with a damp cloth goes a long way.

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Print speed it will greatly increase wear and tear if you run it maxed. The bigger issue is print quality suffers. There will be a point where the loss is acceptable for the time. It depends on what you are doing. I print almost everything at 0.25 layer height and 45-80 mm/s speed. I get slightly crude prints with some effects (ringing) caused by the machine shuddering as it changes direction. The bigger the printer the more force is being tossed around.

I know you don’t have a Prusa but this might help with terms and issues.

It is well written and clear.

Oh I like Prusa slicer too. Partly because the manual is good.


there are lots of variables so variation is common. I typically am around 210-200 for PLA. Some filaments I use like cooler than this and some warmer. Because I tend to extrude (squeeze out lots of filament less detail but faster prints) and print quickly I need to use a bit higher temp to melt plastic faster. When. I was using a 0.8mm nozzle (twice diameter than typical) the layer heights (max and min relate to the physical opening) also were larger I was printing at 0.7 mm layer height at 80mm/s speed I needed to have temps of 260-275 for PLA or the extruder couldn’t keep up.

It is all relative the temps that work for you might not be the best for others.

Once you get comfortable using the printer you can print a ‘temp tower’ which is a tower… that has features that are effected by temperature each section is printed at different temps hotter to cooler. You can use this to find the idea temp for YOU.

I use Prusa slicer it is documented and works well. Not all are the same the same sty sliced with the same default values are very different prints. For me Prusa is fast slicing and printing. I like the features and its ease of use. I hit the cap too!

For PLA there is a wide band of temperatures that work virtually the same on most brands. sometimes specific parts will show up some problems related to temperature. its the geometry of the part is better suited to more or less molten plastic.

I’ve been trying to switch to Prusa slicer from Cura because the interface is so much better, but I’ve not had the time to really get it tuned. That being said I keep finding features for Cura that I find useful. One of them is a calibration “extension” that comes with a large assortment of test pieces, like your cube for example and scrips that you can use with them for tuning. I’ve found them helpful this week because I’ve be printing a lot of riskier parts with unfamiliar filament.

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