Now that we have unboxed the Makerbot Replicator
Z18 3-D printer, lets get it ready to print. So go ahead, plug in the power cable, and turn it on It will take a few minutes to startup. Once it is ready, you will see the startup program that will guide you through the necessary steps. Let’s get started by pressing the dial. The first screen shows you how to navigate the interface on the full color LCD display. Next we will attach the MakerBot Replicator Smart Extruder. Open the top lid and attach the Smart Extruder to the gantry making sure the connector pins align as shown here. Powerful magnets will pull it into place. Once thats complete, the MakerBot Replicator Z18 will calibrate its build plate. This is an automated process and will take a few minutes. Now we are ready to load MakerBot PLA filament into the MakerBot Replicator Z18. Open the filament tray and guide the PLA filament into the red guide tube opening making sure to keep tension on the spool to keep it from unraveling. The filament travels through the guide tube and emerges up top. Once you have a few inches clear, thread the guide tube through the filament guide arm, and then under the Smart Extruder guard. Now we are ready to load the filament into the Smart Extruder so go ahead and press the dial. The Smart Extruder must heat up to the proper operating temperature in order to load the filament This can take a few minutes. Once its heated, you will see this screen and can begin loading the filament. We recommend holding the Smart Extruder against the gantry when loading filament Firmly push in the filament until you feel it being pulled in. Now check to see that the filament is being extruded. Look toward the back right corner of the build chamber and once you see the filament being extruded, press the dial to stop the loading process. To finish, insert the guide tube into the extruder. Next we will need to put the build plate tape on the removable plastic top plate. Simply peel off align and press down firmly. Fit the removable plastic top plate onto the aluminum base plate and snap it into place. Make sure to turn the build plate latches to lock it in. Now you are ready to do a test print. Select an object with the dial, in this case the chain links, and press the dial to print. The extruder will heat up to operating temperature, the build plate will rise into position and printing will begin. You can scroll through a few screens while the MakerBot Replicator Z18 is printing. The first will show you the object being printed, followed by file information print data and temperatures. Once the test print is finished you have completed the onscreen setup. The last step is to download the most current version of MakerBot Desktop and MakerBot Replicator Z18 firmware. To do so, connect a USB cable or Ethernet cable to the MakerBot Replicator Z18 and to your computer. Navigate to MakerBot dot com slash desktop, Where you will find the latest version of MakerBot Desktop, and if you don’t already have it, click the download button. Once you have MakerBot Desktop open, you can check to see if there is a newer version of the MakerBot Replicator Z18 firmware available. On the menu bar, go to the devices drop down menu and select update firmware. Check to see if your current firmware version is the latest available and if it isn’t, go ahead and download the latest. This might take a few minutes. Once thats complete, you are ready to start printing. Thanks for watching.