[Solved] z distance for supports  

Active Member

One of Cura's most frustrating aspects for me is that it will always round the support z distance up to the next layer based on the model layer height. Simply put, a print at .16mm layer height can only have a z distance that is a multiple of .16mm regardless of the setting so if the support z distance is set to .2mm, it will round to .32mm. This results in really poor results since a .16mm z distance is difficult to remove and .32mm produces a crappy under side. I am trying to understand how Prusa handles this. I generally like .16mm as a good compromise between speed and quality, however, I really prefer a z distance of .2mm for supports. Does the result get rounded or can the slicer produce the gcode to address the difference between the two? Thanks!

Posted : 09/10/2019 1:45 pm
Reputable Member

I haven't experimented with this, but my gut instinct is PrusaSlicer will try to get the specified z support distance. The reason why I think this is I've already seen that the layer height of supports can be different than the layer height of the model. I was recently working one one where in the preview it appeared that the layer height of the support structure wasn't even consistent, there was a mix of thin and thick layers. The actual object had consistent appearing layers. I didn't bother to analyze it though.

But this is just an educated guess, or gut instinct. Please don't take this as a definitive answer.

This post was modified 5 days ago by Sembazuru
Posted : 09/10/2019 4:10 pm
blibenson liked
Noble Member

PS will easily do support and object layers that are not synchronized, so long as you do not need a toolchange to do them in the MMU (e.g. soluble). 

I've seen it in action, e.g. at 0.2mm prints with 0.1mm support distance, it will print a layer at 5.00, then move to 5.10, do the support material, and resume the object at 5.20. Gcode preview should also show this with "odd-tens" layers (.1, .3,.5, etc) adding support, and even-tens being object layers.



Posted : 09/10/2019 4:19 pm
blibenson liked
Active Member

Appreciate the quick response and feedback. The machine is a Railcore and while we are all waiting, the tool changer components are still on the drawing board with E3D, Tony and Steve, the creators. This is awesome news as I have been stuck printing anything that requires supports at a .1 or .2mm layer height in order to achieve a .2mm z-gap! Thanks again.

Posted : 09/10/2019 7:27 pm
Famed Member

A caveat of course the printer being used must support variable layer heights.  A slice alone won't make it happen.

It is always wise to get more than one opinion......
Posted : 10/10/2019 1:26 am

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