Welcome to Ultimaker Cura 3.0

Welcome to Ultimaker Cura 3.0

  • Written by Matt Jani
    Oct 17, 2017
  • Category:
    / News

Ultimaker Cura 3.0 offers the easiest and most accessible experience for users, whether they are novices or professionals. With a fresh new interface, preparing your models for 3D printing has never been easier.

With all the new possibilities opened up by the creation of third-party plugins, we decided that moving from 2.7 to 3.0 is the perfect way to mark this new era. Serving over one million users worldwide, our software is designed as a solution for professionals who have adopted 3D printing in to their workflow.

Ultimaker Cura 3.0 offers:

A brand new UI. Use recommended settings for quick and easy print setup using intuitive sliders to prepare your print, or use custom settings to individually tweak over 200 unique slicing parameters.

Reduced print time and material consumption. Recommended mode has new default settings that aim to save print time, material usage, and material costs.

Professional plugin integration. Seamlessly integrate Ultimaker Cura into your workflow. Use it with industry-standard CAD software packages such as SolidWorks and Siemens NX, or develop your own custom plugins to meet your specific demands.

The following shows a selection of features, improvements and bug fixes in Ultimaker Cura 3.0:

UI improvements

Ultimaker Cura 3.0 UI
Ultimaker Cura 3.0 features a completely updated UI and color scheme.

Faster start-up. Start-up speed has been cut in half compared to the previous version.

Redesigned splash screen. The splash screen has been redesigned to reflect the new interface.

Sliders. Recommended mode now uses sliders to alter slicing parameters:

  • Layer height and print speed. Easily control print quality in proportion to print speed.
  • Infill. Infill density is now easily adjusted with a slider with increments of 10%.

Sliders in recommended mode
Easily control print features with intuitive sliders.

Rasterized build plate. The build plate now shows graduations of 10 mm and 1 mm for more accurate model positioning.

Buildplate graduations
The build plate now shows graduations of 10 mm and 1 mm for more accurate model positioning

Extruder buttons. Extruder buttons have changed from tabs to buttons, and button colors have been changed to match the new color scheme.

Layer view position. The layer view drop down box has moved from the bottom-left corner to the top-right corner.

Print time location. The print time location has moved from the bottom-right corner of the 3D viewer to the left of the Print over Network/Save to File button.

Print timer

Tab width. The width of tab functionality will change according to the word space (supported across multiple languages).

Third-party plugins and CAD integration

Third-party plugin capabilities. Professionals can now get the most from Ultimaker Cura by developing their own plugins to streamline their workflow. SolidWorks and Siemens NX compatible plugins are currently available and can be found in the Plugin Browser. Plugins can be installed with a single click, and updates will automatically be pushed when they are available.

SolidWorks integration. Compatible with SolidWorks 2016 and above, this plugin enables seamless integration between the two pieces of software. The workflow is detailed below:

SolidWorks integration - prepare for print
Prepare your design in SolidWorks
SolidWorks integration - send to Ultimaker Cura
Press the “Export to Ultimaker Cura” button
SolidWorks integration - send to Ultimaker Cura
Ultimaker Cura will open, with your design imported, ready to be sliced and printed

Siemens NX integration. Designs created in Siemens NX can be pushed to Ultimaker Cura at the click of a button. If a design is modified in Siemens NX, it can be updated in Ultimaker Cura by clicking the button again. This plugin is compatible with Siemens NX 10 and 11. The workflow is as follows:

Siemens NX plugin integration 2
Create a design in Siemens NX and press the "Cura Interface button"
Siemens NX plugin integration 3
The software will prompt you to select a body to export
Ultimaker Cura Siemens integration
Ultimaker Cura will open, with the design imported ready to be sliced and printed

Autodesk Fusion 360 integration. Designs created in Autodesk Fusion 360 can be pushed to Ultimaker Cura using Fusion 360's "Make" function. The workflow is as follows:

Fusion 360 integration 1
Create a design in Fusion 360
Fusion 360 integration 2
Select the body to export and press "Make" > "3D Print" in the toolbar
Fusion 360 integration 3
Export the design to Ultimaker Cura
Fusion 360 integration 4
Ultimaker Cura will open, with your design imported, ready to be sliced and printed

New slicing features

PVA gradual support. Printing times and material consumption are heavily reduced by printing a lower PVA infill in the support and increasing it towards the top. This also reduces PVA dissolving times. On the (extra) fine and normal quality setting, PVA infill layers are printed at double thickness, decreasing print time even more.

Gradual support infill
Infill becomes denser at interfaces, requiring less support material.
10-pva-gradual-support
The left print was sliced using Cura 2.6. The right print was sliced using Ultimaker Cura 3.0. Note the less-dense supports with the right print - the support gradually increases in density towards the top and at interfaces.

Z seam options. Gives the user control over where to place the seam - hide it in convex corners or in easy to remove locations such as concave corners. This doesn’t let corner angles influence the seam position.

Cross infill. A fractal pattern infill that requires fewer retractions compared to other infill types. This is useful for flexible materials as it causes less material elongation when extruding. The internal structure provided by this gives flexible models greater resistance, while retaining ‘soft’ properties in all directions.

Cross infill
Cross infill in Ultimaker Cura
Cross infill printed
A printed example using TPU 95A

Quarter cubic infill. Similar to tetrahedral (octet) infill, but half of the lines are shifted half of the period up. This pattern sacrifices some rigidity of octet infill for greater toughness.

Quarter cubic infill

Skin removal width. Remove thin strips of skin from a model to prevent print head zig-zagging, in turn preventing vibrations. The lack of vibrations will also improve print quality on slight overhangs.

Skin removal width comparison

Skin expand distance. Cutting away skins on steep overhangs makes prints less sturdy. By expanding skins with the thickness of walls, features will be better supported. In addition, features such as towers on top of infill will be stronger.

Skin expand distance comparison

Extra skin wall count. This feature is now enabled by default. Printing extra skin directly on top of infill can lead to gaps, curling and pillowing. This is reduced by printing a wall around the skin first, and also improves the printing speed.

Extra skin wall count

Minimum extrusion for skin. Will prevent Ultimaker Cura 3.0 filling small gaps that are probably filled already, resulting in less strings, better top details, and faster prints.

PVA retractions. PVA retraction length during a print core switch is increased. In combination with the reduced retraction distance and slightly higher max count, this ensures reduced stringing and more reliable results. Minimum travel distance for retraction is decreased, and max count is slightly increased. This significantly reduces stringing, at the cost of slightly increased print time.

Bug fixes

With the help of our community, we have addressed a number of issues related to:

  • Custom material profiles are no longer sent to Ultimaker Cura when connecting to a printer
  • Sync z-hop with layer changes
  • Memory leaks on MacOS
  • Printer name not loaded when project file is opened
  • Doodle3D Wifi box is selected by default on non-Ultimaker 3 machines

Notes

Software name change. The application name has changed from “Cura” to “Ultimaker Cura”. Please note that when updating on a Mac, this will cause an instance of “Cura” and “Ultimaker Cura” in the applications folder. The "Cura" instance will need to be removed manually.

Quick start guide. New to Ultimaker Cura? Our quick start guide will show you how to set up your model for 3D printing.

Update now!

For a full breakdown of features and new developments, view Ultimaker Cura 3.0 on Github. If you have any questions or feedback, feel free to join the discussion on our forum.

Be the first to see the benefits of Ultimaker Cura 3.0 and download today!

21 replies

A
antoine Anonymous User
Posted by
A
antoine

Posted Oct 27, 2017 - 3:50 PM

Hi,

The new Cura seems great. However I need a way to control my printer directly from the software. I used Pronterface in the old version, but I am a little stuck here. Is there somethig I missed allowing you to direct control the temperature of the extruder (for "atomic" cleaning) , move the head or extrude some filament (for priming when changing colors). Is it possible to enter gcode manually ?

Also would you happen to have settings for printrbot plus?

Thanks for your answer and for your great soft!

L
L Anonymous User
Posted by
L
L

Posted Nov 17, 2017 - 8:22 AM

Hi,

please make an "Export to cura" also for "CATIA" and "PRO/E"!

Show all replies (19 more)

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