Replace the hot end cooling fan

The fan at the back of the print head spins when the nozzle is above 40 ºC. This helps to prevent the heat from the nozzle traveling too far upwards. Without this fan, the filament could get soft above the heater block, which leads to extrusion issues and degradation of print quality.

If the fan is not spinning, it is recommended to replace it before starting a new print. The following steps describe how to correctly replace the hot end cooling fan.

⚠ Caution: Make sure the filament is removed, the Ultimaker is turned off and power supply disconnected before you start the replacement.

Needed

Part(s)

  • 1x 1330 Hot end cooling fan

Tools

  • Hex screwdriver
  • Blue tape
  • Cutting pliers or scissors
  • Electrical or duct tape (optional)
  • Print head alignment aid

Time

  • 30 minutes

Disassembly

1. Remove the clamp clip

  • Place the print head in the front right corner.
  • Remove the blue clamp clip.

2. Remove the Bowden tube

  • Press down on the white tube coupling collet.
  • At the same time, pull the Bowden tube upwards, out of the print head.

3. Take the print head out of the printer

  • Pull the Y print head shaft forward so it snaps out of the sliding blocks.
  • Tilt the left and right sliding blocks so that the X print head shaft also comes loose.
  • Rotate the print head 45 degrees so you can lift the print head and shafts out of the printer, then put the print head shafts aside.

Remove clamp clip
Remove Bowden tube
Remove print head

4. Loosen the print head housing

  • Loosen the four thumb screws and take them out of the print head.

5. Remove the bearings

  • Take the three parts of the print head housing apart and remove the two linear bearings.
  • Slide the first braided sleeve clip and the three print head parts upwards, to keep them out of the way.

✔ Tip: The print head parts can easily slide downwards again over the braided sleeve and get in the way. Use some blue tape to keep them in place.

Remove thumb screws
Remove linear bearings

6. Remove the shrink sleeve

  • Pull the braided sleeve out of the shrink sleeve.
  • Use cutting pliers or scissors to cut the shrink sleeve open. This is necessary to be able to reach the fans’ plugs.

⚠ Caution: Be very careful when cutting open the shrink sleeve. Do not cut any wires.

7. Disconnect the fan

  • Move the braided sleeve upwards to expose the connectors of the fans.
  • Disconnect the hot end cooling fan connected to the blue-orange cable.

Cut open shrink sleeve
Disconnect hot end cooling fan

⚠ Caution: The wires of the fan, and in particular their connections to the plugs, are very fragile. Only hold the white plugs and do not put any pressure on the wires, or the connection might break.

8. Loosen the hot end cooling fan

  • Turn the print head so the back is facing towards you.
  • Keep the PT100 sensor and heater cartridge out of the way.
  • Use the hex screwdriver to remove the two M2.5x10 bolts from the bottom of the hot end cooling fan.

Loosen hot end cooling fan

Re-assembly

1. Attach the new hot end fan

  • Hold the new fan in place on the cooling rib. Make sure that the convex sides of the blades are pointing towards the back and the wires are on the top right side.
  • Place the two M2.5x10 bolts in the bottom holes of the hot end fan and tighten them with the hex screwdriver.

2. Connect the fan

  • Connect the hot end cooling fan to the blue-orange wires.

3. Slide the braided sleeve down

  • Return the braided sleeve to it's original position, making sure all connectors are covered.

✔ Tip: To make sure that the end of the sleeve stays in place after re-assembly, a piece of tape can be put tightly around the end of the braided sleeve, to replace the shrink sleeve. Use electrical tape or duct tape, not blue tape.

4. Place the print head housing bottom

  • Put the bottom part of the print head housing on the hot end, with the opening for the linear bearing on the back and front.
  • Place a linear bearing in the part, while keeping all the wires in the back left corner.

5. Place the print head housing middle

  • Put the middle housing part on top of the linear bearing.
  • Place the other bearing on top, still keeping all the wires in the back left corner.

6. Place the print head housing top

  • Put the top part of the print head housing over the linear bearing, with the tube coupling collet towards the front.
  • Put the four thumb screws through the print head housing, but don’t completely tighten them yet.

✔ Tip: While assembling the print head housing, continuously pay attention to the cables at the back of the print head. Make sure that the heater cartridge, PT100 sensor and the fan wires stay in position. If they overlap, this may obstruct the rotation of the hot end fan.

Place new hot end cooling fan
Connect hot end cooling fan
Tape end braided sleeve
Bottom linear bearing
Upper linear bearing
Insert thumb screws
Print head cable management

7. Align the linear bearings

  • Look at the inside of the linear bearings and rotate them until they are correctly orientated.
  • The linear balls inside the bearing should be in an X shape. This is to more equally divide the weight and pressure of the print head over the bearings, which benefits printing quality.

Linear bearing orientation

8. Tighten the thumb screws

  • Completely tighten the two thumb screws in the back of the print head by hand.
  • Place the print head alignment aid in between the hot end top and hot end bottom.
  • Tighten the thumb screws so that the tool sits firmly in between the hot end parts but can still be taken out easily.

9. Insert the print head shafts through the print head

  • The longer axle is the X print head shaft, it goes through the upper linear bearing.
  • The shorter axle is the Y print head shaft, it goes through the lower linear bearing.

Use print head alignment aid
Insert print head shafts

10. Place the print head back in the gantry system

  • Put the print head in its original position and align the print head shafts with their sliding blocks.
  • Make sure that the ends of the axles are all in between the belts.

Place print head in sliding blocks

11. Secure the print head shaft X

  • Tilt the left and right sliding blocks to be able to place the print head shaft X in the notch. Make sure that the end of the shaft is 1 mm from the left panel.
  • While supporting the bottom of the sliding block, push down on the end of the shaft until it clicks into place. Do this for both sides.

Secure print head shaft X

✔ Tip: Check if the print head shaft X is activating the Y limit switch. If not, remove the print head shaft X and click it in place further to the left.

12. Secure the print head shaft Y

  • Tilt the front and back sliding blocks to be able to place the print head shaft Y in the notch. Make sure that the shaft is exactly in the middle.
  • Pull the end of the axle upwards until it clicks into place. Do this for both sides.

Secure print head shaft Y

✔ Tip: Check if all four sliding blocks are completely upright and not tilted.

13. Insert the Bowden tube into the print head

  • Press down on the tube coupling collet in the print head.
  • Push the Bowden tube all the way in.

14. Ensure the Bowden tube is correctly inserted

  • Let go of the tube coupling collet and gently pull the Bowden tube, along with the tube coupling collet, approximately 2 mm upwards.
  • Hold the tube coupling collet up with your fingernail.
  • While holding the tube coupling collet up, push the Bowden tube down again.

15. Secure the clamp clip

  • Place the blue clamp clip around the tube coupling collet to secure the Bowden tube.

16. Divide the clips

  • Evenly divide the clips over the Bowden tube and braided sleeve.
  • Make sure to keep the braided sleeve on the left of the Bowden tube.

Insert Bowden tube
Fully insert Bowden tube
Place clamp clip
Divide cable clips

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