Why I love KISSlicer...

Why I love KISSlicer...

Postby mhackney » 28 Oct 2017, 14:47

And here is the complete list:

Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #10 - Lower Mesh in Z feature
Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #9 - Load G-Code Settings feature
Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #8 - fractional loops
Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #7 - setting, changing and managing print speeds is really simple and intuitive
Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #6 - Adaptive Layer Heights feature
Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #5 - advanced string and blob mitigation features
Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #4 - Rounded Infill
Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #3 - Wizards
Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #2 - individual Settings files
and my #1 reason for loving KISSlicer is...
Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #1 - Predictability
Last edited by mhackney on 10 Nov 2017, 12:53, edited 2 times in total.
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Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #9

Postby mhackney » 28 Oct 2017, 14:49

I've been printing a lot of parts for two Railcore II Core XY printers a Supporter and I are building (more on that in future posts and videos!). There are 49 printed parts for each printer and I'm using the fantastic PETG CF Extreme filament for these. It's my go-to filament for structural parts that need rigidity. These Railcore parts must be sliced in different ways - different infills and densities, number of perimeters, and supports or lack thereof. Today I needed to reprint a bearing block that had a minor design change. I'd already generated g-code and printed 4 of the original design and worked out the best support settings for it. Of course, I forgot what those settings were! Never fear, KISSlicer's Load G-Code Settings feature saved the day.

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Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #9

The Load Project/G-Code Settings feature is #9 on my list of Why I love KISSlicer! To use it, go up to the Project menu and select Load Project/G-Code Settings. Now you can select a g-code file (click the Options button on OS X and choose the g-code filetype) and load its settings into KISS so you can re-use them! The settings loaded from the g-code have a double triangle prepended to their names as you can see in the screenshot above.

Once the original g-code settings were loaded, I clicked Slice, saved my new g-code file and I was off and printing in less than a minute. Reason #9 rocks!

Tip: once you've loaded g-code settings you can create a copy to save them to your standard settings.
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Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #10

Postby mhackney » 29 Oct 2017, 15:07

How many times have you downloaded a model, sliced it and then discovered that the darned thing is not touching the bed? It's either hovering a few 1/10s of millimeters above the bed or, worse, slightly tilted so part of the base touches the bed and the rest does not. Seems to happen to me more times than I like. So, a cool feature in KISSlicer called Lower Mesh in Z gets my #10 spot for why I love KISSlicer!
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Simply right mouse click (Control click for OS X users) on the model panel to access the handy menu. Then select the Lower Mesh in Z option. Enter the distance you want to lower the model in the dialog. NOTE: a positive value in the dial LOWERS the model. So, if you wanted to raise the model for some reason (maybe the model's base is below the Z=0 plane), simply enter a negative number. I recommend you give this a try and enter a large value like "25" simply to see it in action. Once you understand what - and how - it performs its task, you'll never be frustrated by models with bad bases again!
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Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #8

Postby mhackney » 30 Oct 2017, 17:48

Why I love KISSlicer reason #8 can be stated with two simple words; fractional loops. You can read my blog post KISSlicer 1.6: Fractional Loops - Lunacy or Brilliance? to get the details on what they are and how to use them. They are brilliant. Fractional loops help you print stronger/more rigid parts without paying a significant time penalty. They just work. So well, in fact, that I rarely don't use fractional loops.

Just to refresh your memory, here is an example of a part without fractional loops (top) and with fractional loops. Note how the alternating loops lock both sides of the infill. This is what increases part strength and rigidity.
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Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #7

Postby mhackney » 01 Nov 2017, 10:43

Changing print speeds for perimeters, infill, and shells in other slicers drives me bonkers. For one thing, the current speed settings are not clearly visible, you have to dig into the slicer's configuration screens/panels to see what they are set to – usually 2 or 3 mouse clicks to get to them. To deal with this, I see a lot of people create a new setting for every speed they use and add the speed to the name of the setting, something like this:

50% straight infill - 50mm/s

This clutters up their slicer settings with lots entries – simply so they can see what their current print speeds are.

So that brings me to Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #7 – setting, changing and managing print speeds is really simple and intuitive. Consider:
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Not only are the speeds clearly displayed on every settings panel (highlighted in the red box in the screen capture), KISS even shows the max flow rate – arguably a much more useful bit of information. When you want to tweak your print speeds – maybe to improve print quality a bit or simply speed things up to print a part quickly – simply slide the Speed Slider shown in the blue box. Of course, the speed and flow settings automatically update so you get immediate feedback.

Some users moving to KISS from other slicers get lost when it comes to setting speeds because they've been coerced into a particular way that slicer does it. So, to make that transition easier and to further describe the power of KISSlicer's speed management, I created this tutorial video: All About Speeds.
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Re: Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #8

Postby 0110-m-p » 01 Nov 2017, 23:23

mhackney wrote:Why I love KISSlicer reason #8 can be stated with two simple words; fractional loops. You can read my blog post KISSlicer 1.6: Fractional Loops - Lunacy or Brilliance? to get the details on what they are and how to use them. They are brilliant. Fractional loops help you print stronger/more rigid parts without paying a significant time penalty. They just work. So well, in fact, that I rarely don't use fractional loops.

Just to refresh your memory, here is an example of a part without fractional loops (top) and with fractional loops. Note how the alternating loops lock both sides of the infill. This is what increases part strength and rigidity.
Image


This is by far my favorite new feature. Very cool idea.
Printer: Rostock Max w/ E3D V5 hotend and lots of upgrades/modifications
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Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #6

Postby mhackney » 02 Nov 2017, 08:32

Adaptive Layer Heights is a new feature in KISSlicer 1.6 and it's, well, it's sublime as you are about to learn – and why I love KISSlicer: Reason #6!

When Slic3r Prusa Edition 1.33.3 introduced its Variable Layer Height feature earlier this year, it was very well received. Now, those steppy looking top layers on curved parts could finally be smoothed out by decreasing the layer heights in only those areas. So, you get the advantage of thinner layers where they are needed without paying a big penalty in much slower print speed.

Little did the world know that KISSlicer had a new feature up its sleeve! KISSlicer 1.6's Adaptive Layer Heights feature is conceptually similar but completely different! In Slic3r's implementation, the user has to manually create the layer height changes and gradients – a bit of a pain and the user has to have a lot of knowledge to know when they get it right. KISSlicer completely automates the process of smoothing out these curved areas with thinner layer heights – that's why it's called adaptive layer heights.

Here is a screenshot that shows a part sliced using typical .2mm fixed-height layers on the left and with the new Adaptive Layer Height feature from .1mm to .2mm on the right. If you zoom in and look at the very top of the hemisphere, you'll see the layers in the adaptive slicer are much closer spaced and the curvature is much smoother.
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But don't take a screenshot's word (!?) for it, here's a photo of the parts that were printed from the slice shown above. (By the way, KISSlicer's Lock Paths feature let me slice these parts using different slicing parameters and then save a single g-code file to print.)
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As you can see, the layers on the right are thinner and the curvature is much less stepped in appearance. That's Variable Layer Heights at work.
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Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #5

Postby mhackney » 03 Nov 2017, 08:38

My reason #5 is a doozy! this one could actually be divided into four or more individual reasons – but I'll put them all together in reason #5 because I have a few others waiting in the wings!

So what is reason #5? Advanced string and blob mitigation features, that's what! All slicers have features specifically developed to help minimize or eliminate print artifacts like stringing and blobbing. KISSlicer takes these to a new level and even its normal g-code paths minimize the number of hops and other movements that cause problems. But on top of that, KISSlicer includes this set of arrows in your string and blob mitigation quiver:

  1. Wipe
  2. Destring (aka retract)
  3. Minimum Jump and Trigger (for Wipe and Destring)
  4. Z-lift
  5. Loop Order
  6. Join Loop with Seam Depth and Seam Gap configuration
  7. Jitter and Angle
  8. Corner seam placement
  9. and yes, my favorite blob and string mitigation feature of them all – Preload
(I guess the list is a little longer than four!)
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You can learn a lot more in my two-part series:
Part 1: Musings on Blobbing and Stringing
Part 2: Musings on Blobbing and Stringing

and:
KISSlicer Tutorial: Getting Loopy - All About Perimeters and Loops

and more will be coming in future tutorials and posts!
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Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #4

Postby mhackney » 05 Nov 2017, 08:52

Rounded infill. 'Nuff said...

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My blog post includes a video of this in operation that I couldn't add here: Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #4.
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Why I love KISSlicer: Reason #3

Postby mhackney » 07 Nov 2017, 20:24

Wizards! I love KISSlicer's new Wizards. There are Wizards for setting up your printer, print styles, materials, and supports. And there are tuning Wizards to tune temperature, flow rate, PreloadVE and destring.
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I was a little skeptical when I beta tested the Profile Wizards but as I demonstrated in my Getting Started with the Wizards video, they produce quality results. I now use the Materials wizard to set up new materials most of the time. And if you are setting up a new printer from scratch, check out KISSlicer: 2 minutes and 45 seconds from launch to print for any new user!
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