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New Addition To My Ender 5

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  • New Addition To My Ender 5

    A couple of days ago I received 1 of 2 packages I'm expecting from AliExpress. I just installed the 1st one onto my Ender 5 Pro:

    Click image for larger version

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    Yep, my printer now sports a spiffy new BLTouch ABL.

    It was a bit of an adventure getting it setup. First, I had to find firmware that supports BLTouch. A few weeks ago I migrated from the TH3D Unified firmware, which is based on Marlin 1.x to a version of Marlin 2.x that I configured, compiled, & flashed using VS Code. I really liked some of the changes in how the menues are arranged, and it worked just fine. I was not set up to support BLTouch though and, when I re-configured it to support the BLTouch and flashed it, the LCD screen made a very rapid-fire somewhat high tone machine gun sound.

    I tried a couple of other versions of pre-configured firmware, but they exhibited the same awful sound after flashing. Eventually, I got to the point where the printer just wouldn't accept new firmware flashes. I figured it was toast.

    When I went to bed that night I had a half-awake thought that what I should do is try to go back to the TH3D Unified firmware that I had been running successfully. The next day, after a couple of hiccups, I got it to flash. So, printer functional again.

    I resumed my search for BLTouch friendly firmware. I finally settled on the newest release of the TH3D based on Marlin 1.x, as it says it now supports BLTouch. In the configuration.h file, TH3D provided at least some hints on how to configure the firmware, which I followed. Still, when I tried to compile I got errors. I methodically tracked each one down & fixed them. Finally, I got a clean compile. I do congratulate the people who went to so much effort to provide error messages when something was missing or not configured. It helped a lot.

    I flashed the compiled firmware & got the same awful sound I'd already had with other firmware. I pondered this a bit & decided it might be making that noise because it was looking for BLTouch hardware that I hadn't installed yet. I had figured I'd get the firmware ready beforehand; turned out to be a bad idea.

    I proceeded to install the hardware. To make things easier, I had ordered a genuine Creality BLTouch kit, so it came with bolts, mounting bracket, adapter board, etc. It was about $40US.

    I had a couple of anxious moments when it wouldn't power up as expected. I redid the connections to the control board 2 or 3 times & it started to work.

    The next time I powered up the printer it did not emit the awful noise, and the BLTouch red LED came on & blinked a few times..... excellent.

    I was spending a lot of time trying to get the Z Offset correct; too much time. I got online & found a helpful page on instructables.com. That helped me dial in the Z Offset. I printed 1 of the 20x20x1 layer squares in them middle of the bed, and it actually looked pretty good. So I printed 1 of the Surface 3 charging cable strain reliefs as a proof of functionality.

    That's where it stands as of now.

    My next upgrade, which I ordered at the same time as the BLTouch, is an SKR 1.4 Turbo control board. It should arrive any day now. Then I will have to figure out to squeeze it into the control cabinet with the power supply.


  • #2
    Welcome to the world of auto bed leveling. I admit I had a easier time of it with my Ender 3 V2. Installed the hardware, flashed the smith3d firmware, set the z-offset via the menu's in the firmware and i was off to the races.

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    • #3
      Good job on the troubleshooting, I think it'll be well worth it. Yeah, most times when people have problems, it's half wiring issues and half firmware issues. A problem I had early on was that the dupont connectors aren't really suited to the jst jacks on the mainboard. They slipped out by accident a couple of times. Once I crimped on proper jst jacks, I had no more of these problems. The other thing you can do is hotglue it on, but I prefer to do it the proper way.

      I think you can actually go to using the 2.x firmware since you figured out that the problem was because you didn't have it connected. But maybe you want to do that when your skr board comes in anyway.

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      • #4
        Yeah, I'm thinking I'll wait for the SKR board. Right now, I have a working config, so I won't mess with it. I did make 1 change. I was really getting tired of using the LCD menu to preheat the hotend & bed, but then having to tune the settings because they were set at 240C/100C for ABS. The fact it said "Preheat ABS" was also a tiny bit irking.

        I went into the firmware & finally found the settings for PREHEAT_2. I changed them to 235C/70C, changed the LCD message, then flashed the firmware and....... no go. The LCD now said "Preheat PETG", but the default settings of 240C/100C were still there. An hour later, after a bunch of searching I found the answer: reset the EEPROM just before flashing. It's not a big time saver, but it's 1 less annoying thing. So now I know what I have to do when I install the SKR board.

        I need to have the printer functional because I suspect it's likely I will have to print a new cabinet for the power supply and control board, unless I'm very lucky and can find a way to squeeze the SKR into the OEM cabinet.

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