Convert the STL file into gcode
The final step before printing is to convert the STL file into gcode — and to verify that it all works. I’ve found that even if the STL file looks perfect, the slicer can end up producing the same bad gcode as I showed at the beginning.
I won’t walk you through using slic3r (or your favorite slicer) too much, but will point out a couple of things:
- It’s nice when it says the object is manifold, but even if it’s not, sometimes Slic3r does an OK job of repairing it. It’s not a crisis (yet) if it’s not. But this object should be manifold.
- The View command is useful to make sure the object still looks like you expect. Sometimes, when I’m exporting multiple objects from Blender I’ll forget one, and this way I can catch that kind of mistake.
With the gcode in generated, I can print it out. But before I do that, there’s one more check I like to do.
- Navigate a web browser to http://gcode.ws/
- Either drop the gcode file or select it
- Look at the layers being printed to see if they look right:
And if that all checks out, you’re ready to print!!!
And the object in red plastic: