How to Set your Nozzle Height and Level your Bed – 3D Printing 101

Believe it or not there is many different ways of setting correct nozzle height and leveling your 3D Print bed!

In this video we’ll go through 7 different 3D Printers and 7 Different approaches. Regardless of which kind your 3D Printer uses, ensuring correct nozzle height and a level bed is the first step towards getting awesome 3D Prints!

3D Printing 101 on Maker’s Muse is here to help you get started in 3D Printing easily and quickly! We’ve made all the mistakes before, so you can avoid them. Be sure to check out the whole playlist.

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20 thoughts on “How to Set your Nozzle Height and Level your Bed – 3D Printing 101

  1. baruch shad

    HEy angus my printer manufacturer (CR-10) says to use a A4 sheet of paper which has a thickness of 0.1mm a bussines card is way thicker. Should i listen to them or you?? I learnt all i know from you!

  2. Daniel Goepp

    I just got a Dremel 3D40, and I love how it does the bed level. If you haven't seen it, check it out! Very impressive.

  3. CoxTH

    Couldn't I just use two spirit levels to level the bed of the Cocoon Create or other i3 clones? One to make sure the printer itself is level and one to make sure the bed is level.

  4. balancenoptions1322

    It's crazy it's 2017 and bed leveling is still a problem is it that they can't figure it out or is it to expensive to make a printer that eliminates that problem?

  5. Ryan Garrison

    Dang Angus, out of everyone on the whole wide internet, you have the most printers I have never even heard of. Maybe because you're in Australia?

  6. mechtheist

    It's very confusing to me how there is a conflation of 'level', 'flat', and I think 'height', or 'nozzle height', these often get shoved into the term 'level'. Something can be level and not flat, or flat but perpendicular to the ground. Or, you can be perfectly level at the wrong level.

    Is leveling the surface making it level, or parallel to a plane the printer thinks is level? If the surface is flat, how far out-of-level can it get before there is a problem? And that is an ambiguous question. If the printer's idea of level is set to the flat printing surface, how far out-of-level, meaning "out-of-plumb", before their is a problem?

    I'm very new to this, old hands probably have no problem with the ambiguities, might not even realize how rife they are in their speech, but it can sure confuse inexperienced. .

  7. Chris Leamon

    Instead of using a piece of paper go get a set of "gap gauges". they can usually be found a automotive stores and will have repeatable accuracy.

  8. Jonathan Kayne

    The Makerbot Replicator 5th gen also does the z axis auto adjustment before every print. The difference is that the smart extruder has a hall-effect sensor inside and there is a magnet mounted to the hotend that it uses. You still have to go through guided leveling every so often, but it uses the same system to do that too.

  9. Brandon T

    I'm currently staring at my computer screen, typing this comment, but a moment ago I was staring at my BLTouch sensor that finally arrived from South Korea a couple days ago…which I keep procrastinating on installing as I dread the currently well-bundled wires turning into a tumbleweed, dealing with extruder carriage dis/re-assembly, and hoping my fingers can get into the board's enclosure without breaking something and/or requiring me to disassemble even more crap.

    Ugh, just writing that paragraph gave me a headache. :-/ I'll give someone $20 plus the old/current auto-level sensor as payment to come do it for me while I drink booze and watch! 😀

  10. Fudmottin

    I'm not a fan of using a spacer card (business card). I have a FlashForge Creator Pro which uses manual leveling with three points of adjustment. First thing I did was chuck the card. Instead, I use blade type gap gauges. I admit I haven't got a solid rule for the actual distance to aim for. I've been using 0.2mm because the nozzles are 0.4mm. I set the extruders over each adjustment point and either the 0.2mm blade will clear the gap or it won't. I tested for warpage using a straight edge. Before I do the leveling procedure, I work the springs. It seems they can shift about. I start at the front and then work clockwise. Once I've got each nozzle set at the adjustment points, I try a few random points on the bed. Seems to work for that part.

    I think the real challenge for me now, as I'm still a neophyte, is working out the proper settings in Simplyfy3D.

  11. BlatKartoshka

    I was wondering about the following method (which I haven't tried yet):
    Instead of using a piece of paper and try to have the nozzle press at it at the same force in every point of the bed I thought about:
    1. Calibrate the nozzle to exactly the biggest distance that doesn't allow inserting the piece of paper.
    2. Compute the wanted distance through the slicer (or perhaps simply move the object you're printing to be in the 'air').

    Why wouldn't this work?


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