Installation and Setup
To get the Eris up and running you have to have a PC to hook it too or use one of the Matter Control tablets that SeeMeCNC also sells. While I had a few different PCs available, I wasn’t really sure where I would be setting the printer up at after my initial testing. Because of that I went ahead and went with my laptop. The secondary benefit to this is that using a laptop makes the Eris even more portable than it already is. Before we power up the Eris I did need to download and install the software that we would be using it with. You can go with a variety of programs but I stuck with Matter Control. Its open source, so that’s a bonus, but the main reason is because SeeMeCNC has most everything setup with Matter Control as it is.
Once downloaded and installed I opened up the program and clicked to add a printer. You can give the printer a name and then from there you select SeeMeCNC and then the Eris. Next it will prompt you to install the driver, this as simple as just the one click. Next it will try to auto detect the printer. So now we hook the power cable up to the printer, plug in the USB connection, then turn the printer on. For me it picked up the printer right away both on my laptop and on a PC later as well. I did read in the beta test forums that a few people don’t have luck with the auto detect, if that happens you just click manual configuration and point it at USB ports until it picks it up.
Now before we get printing, with my printer being a very early model, the settings that came with Matter Control weren’t optimal. SeeMeCNC will be providing Matter Control with the updated settings for an upcoming update so this won’t be an issue for most people, but you can also download the settings on the Eris product page. The zip folder has a settings page and three Gcode files. You can rename those three files to have gcode as the file type and add them into the print queue or you can open them up and copy the contents into the macros page. I went with the macros way but it seems both are an option.
Now the last thing we have to do is prep the printer for our first print. You get out the filament spool that came with the printer. Make sure the end of the filament is flat by breaking off a little of the end and also make sure there aren’t any bends in it. From there you feed it into the tubing around to the extruder on the other side. On the extruder side you hold the extruder open with the red release and slide the filament in. Once in you can let go and twist the knob a few times counter clockwise until you can see just a little filament in the tube to the right. From there we go into Matter Control and run the load filament gcode script that SeeMeCNC provided. This will heat up hotend to 215c and then feed the filament up to the hotend and extrude a little to make sure it is primed.
Before printing you should make sure the print bed is clean and run the calibration script. I like to wait until the hotend cools back down to about 180 and then I clean off any plastic that has come out of the nozzle. That way when you run the calibration it gets full contact. It will come down three times double tapping on each test to confirm. Once it finishes up you are good to print.
I started with a 3D benchy boat as my first print. My wife loves the boat but the goal here is to test how the printer prints in multiple different situations. You can download this and other designs on thingiverse.com. You can pull the file from the zip you download and put it into your download folder for direct access or if you put it somewhere else you can click add in Matter Control down in the left corner and import it. From there you just have to click print and you are off to the races. While printing you can see the 3d model or you can set it to show the print progress for each layer as it prints.
Our first print wasn’t perfect but still a world better than what a lot of printers will print on their first print. The initial setup is currently taking in feedback from multiple beta testers and reviewers to get the tune just right. Once finished we take the scraper and gently get it up under the edge of the print. This works best if you hold your hand across the scraper as well to keep it from popping up. I didn’t know this at first and ended up damaging our scraper lol. My loss is your gain though!