Replace the Bowden tube

The Bowden tube guides filament from the feeder to the print head.

Forwarding improperly cut or ground down filament through the Bowden tube could scratch or damage the inside of the tube. If this happens, the filament can no longer be forwarded to the print head smoothly. This can lead to under extrusion or other print quality issues.

Also, after removing the Bowden tube multiple times, for example for cleaning the tube or nozzle, the section which is gripped by the tube coupling collet can wear out. If this happens, the tube coupling collet will not have a firm hold on the Bowden tube, which will allow the Bowden tube to move during a print, which can negatively impact print quality.

Before completely replacing the Bowden tube, it can help to cut a small section of approximately 2-3 mm from the end of the Bowden tube. This allows the tube coupling collet to grip an undamaged part of the tube in order to keep it in place.

Note: This only works for the print head side of the Bowden tube; make sure it is a straight cut. Avoid cutting the Bowden tube more than once: a shorter length increases the stress on the tube and may impact print quality.

If the Bowden tube is permanently damaged, it will need to be replaced. The following steps describe how to correctly replace the Bowden tube:

Parts required:

  • 1x 1266 Bowden tube

Tools required:

  • None

Time:

  • 5 minutes

Disassembly

1. Remove the filament

  • On the Ultimaker 2+, go to "Material > Change".
  • Remove the filament from the feeder and turn off the printer.

2. Remove the cable clips

  • Bend the four cable clips open to loosen them from the Bowden tube.
  • Leave the clips around the braided sleeve.

3. Remove the clamp clips

  • Place the print head in the front right corner.
  • Use your fingernail to remove the clamp clips from the tube coupling collets at the print head and feeder.

4. Loosen the Bowden tube from the printer

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

Change material
Remove cable clips
Remove clamp clip
Remove Bowden tube

Reassembly

1. Note the orientation of the Bowden tube

  • Take the new Bowden tube and note the two different sides.
  • The side which is drilled should be inserted into the feeder. This allows easier access of the filament into the Bowden tube.
  • The flat side should be inserted into the print head.

2. Insert the Bowden tube into the feeder

  • Press down on the tube coupling collet in the feeder.
  • Push the Bowden tube all the way in.
  • Make sure that the braided sleeve goes behind the Bowden tube, from left to right.
  • Secure the tube with the clamp clip.

Bowden tube orientation
Insert Bowden tube feeder

3. 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.

4. 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.

Insert Bowden tube print head
Fully insert Bowden tube

5. Secure the clamp clip

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

6. Place the cable clips

  • Click the cable clips onto the Bowden tube.
  • Equally divide the clips over the Bowden tube.

Secure clamp clip
Place cable clips
Divide cable clips

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