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A5 - All motors stopped working but mainboard works

izakisizakis Posts: 11Member
Hi,

Just received an A5, it looks like its "stuck" and won't respond to anything. the LCD is working and I can access the different menus. Can also control the temperatures of the bed and extruder but nothing else.

Pronterface with G28 gives:

Connecting...
start
Printer is now online.
echo:Marlin 1.1.8
echo: Last Updated: 2017-12-25 12:00 | Author: (Telli Mantelli, Kris Waclawski, Samuel Pinches & Michael Gilardi, 21 Jan 2018)
echo:Compiled: Sep 21 2018
echo: Free Memory: 3053  PlannerBufferBytes: 1264
echo:V47 stored settings retrieved (678 bytes; crc 24786)
echo:  G21    ; Units in mm
echo:  M149 C ; Units in Celsius
echo:Filament settings: Disabled
echo:  M200 D1.75
echo:  M200 D0
echo:Steps per unit:
echo:  M92 X80.00 Y80.00 Z800.00 E100.00
echo:Maximum feedrates (units/s):
echo:  M203 X500.00 Y500.00 Z15.00 E25.00
echo:Maximum Acceleration (units/s2):
echo:  M201 X1000 Y500 Z100 E5000
echo:Acceleration (units/s2): P<print_accel> R<retract_accel> T<travel_accel>
echo:  M204 P800.00 R800.00 T1000.00
echo:Advanced: S<min_feedrate> T<min_travel_feedrate> B<min_segment_time_us> X<max_xy_jerk> Z<max_z_jerk> E<max_e_jerk>
echo:  M205 S0.00 T0.00 B20000 X8.00 Y3.00 Z0.30 E5.00
echo:Home offset:
echo:  M206 X0.00 Y0.00 Z0.00
echo:Mesh Bed Leveling:
echo:  M420 S0 Z0.00
echo:  G29 S3 X1 Y1 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X2 Y1 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X3 Y1 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X4 Y1 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X5 Y1 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X1 Y2 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X2 Y2 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X3 Y2 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X4 Y2 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X5 Y2 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X1 Y3 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X2 Y3 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X3 Y3 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X4 Y3 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X5 Y3 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X1 Y4 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X2 Y4 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X3 Y4 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X4 Y4 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X5 Y4 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X1 Y5 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X2 Y5 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X3 Y5 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X4 Y5 Z0.00000
echo:  G29 S3 X5 Y5 Z0.00000
echo:Material heatup parameters:
echo:  M145 S0 H205 B70 F255
echo:  M145 S1 H240 B110 F0
echo:PID settings:
echo:  M301 P35.30 I4.35 D71.57
echo:SD init fail
>>> g28
SENDING:G28
echo:busy: processing
echo:busy: processing
echo:busy: processing

I received it in this "stuck" state, with stretched couplers on both z axis motors which I already replaced but I don't know how to tell whether the issue is with software or faulty drivers/mainboard... can anyone help?

Thanks!

Post edited by izakis on

Comments

  • Stephen ToddStephen Todd Posts: 281🌟 Super Member 🌟
    edited February 11
    The A5 has two boards - the touch screen has a board, and there is the main controller board - they pass data between each other via a ribbon cable - that ribbon cable is what I would be looking at (the LCD can be fully functioning but the main board not getting the data)

    With the printer turned off, unplug and re-plug the ribbon cable at both ends, then power on and see if it works
    Thanked by 1izakis
    Post edited by Stephen Todd on
  • izakisizakis Posts: 11Member
    Hi thanks for answering, will try your suggestion in a few minutes and update when done. Although I believe the cable is ok because I can control the temperatures of the bed and extruder.
  • Stephen ToddStephen Todd Posts: 281🌟 Super Member 🌟
    I just ran G28 through pronterface on my A3s version 1 - which is the same as A5 apart from being smaller

    G28 gave me:
    SENDING:G28
    echo:busy: processing
    echo:busy: processing
    echo:busy: processing

    So, G28 proves nothing - my A3s is fully functioning, but sticks just like yours

    Thanked by 1izakis
  • Stephen ToddStephen Todd Posts: 281🌟 Super Member 🌟
    The MKS gen L v1.0 controller board is notorious for failing

    You can buy them for less than Β£20 from Amazon UK, or whatever Amazon area you are in - the board is even cheaper from official MKS store on aliexpress

    My board failed after a few months - but mine was the bed and hot end temperatures faulty

    Thanked by 1izakis
  • Stephen ToddStephen Todd Posts: 281🌟 Super Member 🌟
    edited February 11
    You don't say if it is new or used printer - I'm thinking it is used, as the firmware is not original factory, and somebody has done mesh bed levelling - that's community firmware from here - could be someone flashed wrong version for A5?

    No telling who has done what to the printer
    Post edited by Stephen Todd on
  • izakisizakis Posts: 11Member
    Hi again :)

    Its a used printer and tbh I have no idea what was done to it, I received it like this from a friend to try to repair it. Opened it up, disconnected and reconnected all cables. Also checked the voltages on the drivers, they were 0.45 so I changed them to 0.60. It still acts the same way.

    I think best thing now is to switch a board and check again. which board and drivers are recommended? or just go with the same MKS and 4988.

    Thanks!
  • Stephen ToddStephen Todd Posts: 281🌟 Super Member 🌟
    I just realized G28 did nothing on my printer because it was homed - when I ran G28 with all axis moved, it homed the printer

    I would get original parts, as otherwise things will get even more complicated

    I would re-flash the firmware with A5 version, making sure to unplug the LCD board ribbon cable first - could be badly flashed/wrong firmware

    A shorting spark anywhere on the printer can kill/partially kill the controller board

    Stepper drivers could be blown, but no way to tell unless you test them:
    https://howtomechatronics.com/tutorials/arduino/how-to-control-stepper-motor-with-a4988-driver-and-arduino/

    Thanked by 1izakis
  • izakisizakis Posts: 11Member
    Appreciate all your advice, thanks! Ordered a new MKS, some TMC2208 drivers (cant find a4988 locally) and an Arduino Mega to test the a4988's i already have installed.

    I re-flashed the firmware following this - https://jgaurorawiki.com/a5/firmware  but it didnt help.

    this guy had the same problem as i have but he had tmc installed and when switched back to a4988 it worked out. https://jgauroraforum.com/discussion/785/jgaurora-a5-all-axis-are-not-moving-after-reflashing-marlin-1-1-8c-solved/p1


  • Samuel PinchesSamuel Pinches Posts: 2,688Administrator
    @izakis - the stock firmware only works with A4988. Most other drivers will need changes to work correctly. I think the TMC2208 work as drop in replacements, but cannot confirm. Are the current drivers all A4988?
    Thanked by 1izakis
  • izakisizakis Posts: 11Member
    edited February 13
    tbh Im not sure as this is a 2nd hand machine, will have to open it, check and update.
    Bought some a4988 but they come with the pins un-soldered so that will take some time to solder.
    Received the Mega 2560 so I will also test the ones installed.
    Which firmware is best for the a4988? Go OEM or this - https://sampin.ch/A5-firmware

    Really appreciate all the guidance, Thanks!



    Post edited by izakis on
  • Stephen ToddStephen Todd Posts: 281🌟 Super Member 🌟
    Yes, https://sampin.ch/A5-firmware and follow the instructions on this page https://jgaurorawiki.com/a5/firmware

    The OEM firmware is flawed, and you'll likely need the mesh bed levelling feature of the community firmware to get a good first layer on the buildplate which is usually warped when heated


  • izakisizakis Posts: 11Member
    We got the machine working! :) Went for a new control board and new tmc2208 drivers. The FAQ section and Da Hai Zhu's TMC2208 setup video were perfect, Thanks!

    Now there's a new issue where the extruder will stop pushing filament randomly, any idea why that might happen? The filament I use is super old and breaks really easy, can this be the reason?


  • Stephen ToddStephen Todd Posts: 281🌟 Super Member 🌟
    Sounds like the filament has absorbed moisture - you could dry it out in an oven on low setting for a few hours, but new filament will remove any doubt about condition of feed gear, etc.
  • izakisizakis Posts: 11Member
    We got the machine working! :) Went for a new control board and new tmc2208 drivers. The FAQ section and Da Hai Zhu's TMC2208 setup video were perfect, Thanks!

    Now there's a new issue where the extruder will stop pushing filament randomly, any idea why that might happen? The filament I use is super old and breaks really easy, can this be the reason?


  • izakisizakis Posts: 11Member
    We got the machine working! :) Went for a new control board and new tmc2208 drivers. The FAQ section and Da Hai Zhu's TMC2208 setup video were perfect, Thanks!

    Now there's a new issue where the extruder will stop pushing filament randomly, any idea why that might happen? The filament I use is super old and breaks really easy, can this be the reason?


  • Laser8302Laser8302 Posts: 164Member, 🌟 Super Member 🌟
    When you say stops pushing filament, do you mean it starts clicking? Or something else?
    Can you restart the flow by pushing by hand?
    I upgraded to a BMG clone extruder from trianglelab on aliexpress because of a similar issue.

    Try lubricating the filament with a drop of vegetable oil on a sponge. It may just be your hot-end PTFE liner is causing a clog or something.
  • izakisizakis Posts: 11Member
    Hi yes, the extruder starts clicking and the filament gets tangled inside it. I had to open the extruder and unclog it. 

    I'm lowering the extruder speed a bit to see if that helps, if it wont i'll probably get a better one like yours @Laser8302 .


    Thanks :)
  • Samuel PinchesSamuel Pinches Posts: 2,688Administrator
    edited March 9
    @izakis extruder clicking either means extruder vref is too low, or there is too much friction in the drive path. Canola oil is a good suggestion. The default A5S Bowden tube is far too long, you can take it out of he wire part guide, and run it directly from extruder to head and shorten it by 10-15cm. Cut using razor blade or sharp knife, not using scissors as you’ll crush the PTFE tube causing more friction...
    Thanked by 1izakis
    Post edited by Samuel Pinches on
  • Samuel PinchesSamuel Pinches Posts: 2,688Administrator
    edited March 9
    Printing at too low a temp can also cause friction as nozzle temp drops rapidly when trying to extrude faster, need to raise nozzle temp to compensate.
    Thanked by 1izakis
    Post edited by Samuel Pinches on
  • izakisizakis Posts: 11Member
    Hi,

    @Samuel Pinches I've set the vref to 0.6, that's supposed to be ok right? Also noticed the motor is getting very hot to a point I can't touch it. I tried a bit of oil and have already shortened the tube.

    This is how the clog looks like, happened 3rd time already about 20 minutes into printing -


    I'm trying to print the attached "money_cat" file, it came with the printer on the usb stick, had the most success with it sticking to bed. Temps are 210 for nozzle and 50 for bed.

    What do you guys think, titan metal extruder worth the price or go for BMG clone?

    Thanks!
  • Samuel PinchesSamuel Pinches Posts: 2,688Administrator
    edited March 10
    Heat from the motor may be softening the PLA causing jams. Perhaps turning down the VREF is a better strategy. Some printers have fans in front of the extruder gears to prevent this kind of unintentional heating and softening.
    Thanked by 1izakis
    Post edited by Samuel Pinches on
  • Samuel PinchesSamuel Pinches Posts: 2,688Administrator
    I can't advise on VREF, the wiki or other forum posts will be a more reliable source than my memory. It also depends on what kind of driver IC you are using, stock A4988 or upgraded to something else. If its getting that hot it may be too high.
    Thanked by 1izakis
  • Stephen ToddStephen Todd Posts: 281🌟 Super Member 🌟
    I've never had any problem with stock JGAurora extruder and A4988 stepper driver on my V1 A3s which is practically identical to the larger A5 apart from build volume - and I dont buy expensive filament, just normal stuff on offer on Amazon

    No way should the motor get hot enough to melt the filament - motor is being pushed too hard or is faulty
    Thanked by 1izakis
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