BLTouch auto bed levelling sensor setup

Tarantula hardware issues, upgrades and configurations
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Charles
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BLTouch auto bed levelling sensor setup

Post by Charles » Fri Mar 24, 2017 7:33 am

BLTouch auto bed levelling sensor setup
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Re: BLTouch auto bed levelling sensor setup

Post by JaY_III » Tue Jun 20, 2017 10:06 pm

So , my question for you is the BL Touch worth it?

I ordered a clone off Ali, and have had it a few weeks, but have not bothered to install it.
Since upgrading to an AL bed, I haven't found my self needing to level that bed on a regular basis.

May I ask you or anyone else with one, what benefit have you seen since it was installed?

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Re: BLTouch auto bed levelling sensor setup

Post by royg » Wed Jun 21, 2017 4:27 am

JaY_III wrote:
Tue Jun 20, 2017 10:06 pm
So , my question for you is the BL Touch worth it?

I ordered a clone off Ali, and have had it a few weeks, but have not bothered to install it.
Since upgrading to an AL bed, I haven't found my self needing to level that bed on a regular basis.

May I ask you or anyone else with one, what benefit have you seen since it was installed?
I'm in the process of installing a genuine BLTouch at the moment. I should be able to report regarding the benefits of the BLTouch in a few days.

I bought the genuine BLTouch because I've heard a number of reports that some of the clone BLTouch units are far from accurate, and as a result don't offer much in the way of benefits. A friend uses a genuine BLTouch on his Anet printer, and is very happy with it's results. I'll let you know how it goes on the Tarantula in a few days.

Regards,

RoyG
Tevo Tarantula - Large Bed - E3dV6 - BLTouch
OctoPi (on a Raspberry Pi 3B)
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BLTouch-Smart

Post by royg » Fri Jun 23, 2017 11:20 pm

Charles wrote:
Fri Mar 24, 2017 7:33 am
BLTouch auto bed levelling sensor setup
There's an updated version of the Antclabs BLTouch being sold now (since roughly May 2017). It's called the BLTouch-Smart. The older BLTouch model is now referred to as the BLTouch-Classic, and is still available at some resellers. This is the link to Antclabs' documentation for both types of BLTouch.

The BLTouch-Smart requires some changes to the installation and configuration. If you follow the most recent information on the Antclabs web site, you'll not have any issues. The above link in the first post in this thread still provides some useful information, but if read in isolation it can be misleading.

The BLTouch-Smart needs to be installed at a slightly different height above the tip of the print nozzle. The Classic was installed at 8.0 +- 0.5mm, whilst the Smart is installed at 8.5 +- 0.3mm. It's not a big difference, but if you install the BLTouch-Smart using the measurement required for the Classic, it won't work, and you'll have endless problems. (Don't ask me how I know. :roll:

Also, the recent versions of the Tarantula Firmware - those versions based on RC8 or more recent, have full support for the BLTouch built in and require only enabling the settings that are already in the Marlin config files. Some of the older BLTouch Videos and Tutorials that are around on the Internet were made based on older versions of the Marlin Firmware which required extensive changes in the firmware to enable the BLTouch. If you're referring to a Video or Tutorial to assist you in your BLTouch installation, PLEASE ensure that you are using the same version of Marlin as that used in the Video or Tutorial. If you try to make the firmware changes mentioned in those older BLTouch videos and tutorials, in the current version of Marlin Firmware, it won't compile and you'll get numerous errors. (Don't ask me how I know. :roll: )

The wiring instructions for the BLTouch (Smart and Classic) are not very precise. But, as long as you make sure that the tutorial or video that you're referring to is fairly recent, you should be OK. The Antclabs Google Plus page is a very helpful reference for BLTouch wiring. It seems that some of the early release BLTouch units, from say 2016'ish, may have had different coloured wiring. As a result, any photographs or instructions from that time period that for instance show connection of the particular coloured wire to a particular pin, may be wrong, as the current BLTouch devices don't have a wire that colour, or that coloured wire is on a different pin on the BLTouch. Again,the solution is to make sure that you are referring to recent videos or tutorials.

When I get my BLTouch-Smart working correctly and reliably, I'll post some photographs of the wiring, etc.

I hope that info is useful.

Regards,

RoyG
Tevo Tarantula - Large Bed - E3dV6 - BLTouch
OctoPi (on a Raspberry Pi 3B)
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Re: BLTouch auto bed levelling sensor setup

Post by JaY_III » Fri Jun 23, 2017 11:37 pm

looking forward to your results

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Re: BLTouch-Smart

Post by antmar904 » Mon Aug 07, 2017 1:54 pm

royg wrote:
Fri Jun 23, 2017 11:20 pm
Charles wrote:
Fri Mar 24, 2017 7:33 am
BLTouch auto bed levelling sensor setup
When I get my BLTouch-Smart working correctly and reliably, I'll post some photographs of the wiring, etc.

I hope that info is useful.

Regards,

RoyG
Hi royg

Any update on this? I would like to see how you installed and wired your "smart" sensor. I just purchased mine and I'm gathering all the materials and docs before I start the installation.

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Re: BLTouch auto bed levelling sensor setup

Post by royg » Mon Aug 07, 2017 2:34 pm

Ahhh ummm - seems I forgot about this. I' post some photos later today - it' just after midnight here at the moment, and I'm off to bed. Us old blokes need our beauty sleep.

RoyG
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Showdoc
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Re: BLTouch auto bed levelling sensor setup

Post by Showdoc » Mon Aug 07, 2017 9:47 pm

would love to see your wiring and what software changes you made in marlin...
got my tarantula a little over a month ago...and after having a bad batch of filament, getting the second z axis motor, and printing a fan shroud...it's up and working great

have had the smart bltouch sitting by it for a couple weeks and saw several ways to wire it up but i have a newer board from tevo with colored sockets and was leery about wiring it up and if marlin used THOSE particular servo ports to control it, or if it needed to be wired in somewhere else.

and i'm guessing the big difference between the bltouch and smart bltouch is the positioning vertically of the sensor, having a different throw of the pin etc.

thanks in advance for your help
and thanks for the past posts i've read through
morelater
the show doctor
back here in the states...

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Re: BLTouch auto bed levelling sensor setup

Post by buffalo » Thu Nov 02, 2017 6:09 pm

Any updates or reviews about the BLTouch?

Is it better than the green SN04?
Or let me ask it in another way: which sensor is best?

Regards
Friedrich

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Re: BLTouch auto bed levelling sensor setup

Post by royg » Sun Nov 05, 2017 2:38 am

I haven't bothered to provide photographs of my ANTCLABS Smart BLTouch installation, as the physical installation is pretty straight forward. I designed a simple mount for it (see https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2368256) that hangs off the side of the E3D X Axis Carriage Mount.

There are differences in the required mounting height between the genuine BLTouch and the genuine Smart BLTouch. The documentation provided by ANTCLABS (the BLTouch manufacturer in South Korea) is very thorough, and spells out the differences between the two devices. Additionally, ANTCLABS support is very helpful. The mount that I made has enough vertical adjustment for the BLTouch to be able to accommodate both types.

There are no such guarantees if you're using one of the Chinese copy BLTouch (or the 3D Touch, as one clone is called). I've had people send me messages on Thingiverse complaining that their "BLTouch" doesn't fit my mount. It usually only takes one question to find that they are using one of the clone/copy devices. I think the clone manufacturers vary the size, shape, name, etc a bit, to try to get around the Copyright and Trademarks on the original Antclabs BLTouch.

That leaves the connections for the BLTouch to the MKS Base 1.4 board. Again, the Antclabs web site documentation has the required answers.

Have a look at; https://www.antclabs.com/wiring1

Go down the page until you find the MKSBase 1.4 entry, and follow the instructions in the provided diagrams. If your Tarantula was supplied with the slightly newer MKSBase 1.5 main board, then the wiring is exactly the same.

The servo connection for the BLTouch is shown on the above link.

The other connection required for the BLTouch replaces the Z Axis Limit Switch. BUT, the BLTouch uses a transistor instead of a microswitch, so polarity of the BLTouch connection to the Z Axis Limit Switch connector on the main board is important. Carefully examine the photographs on the above link, and follow the wiring exactly. If, when you power-on the printer, the BLTouch fails to go through it's pin up, pin down, blink lights, etc self test, then your wiring is most likely wrong.

You will need to configure a version of Marlin to suit the BLTouch. The instructions on the ANTCLABS web site seem to refer to older versions of Marlin, so don't follow ANTCLABS instructions for editing Marlin. Instead, get a copy of Jim Brown's Marlin for Tarantula Easy_Config_1.1.x, and follow Jim's instructions for configuring the firmware to suit your printer, including the settings for the BLTouch.

Then you'll need to calibrate the BLTouch. Again, the ANTCLABS web site has good directions for the calibration process, which effectively involves manually moving the Z Axis down till the nozzle is at it's normal printing height above the bed, and then issuing a series of Gcode commands via the console, to save that value into the memory on the printer's Main Board.

I've just had a look today at the ANTCLABS web site, and their documentation has improved quite a bit since I installed my BLTouch around May 2017, so the job looks like it should be much easier now. Most of the difficulties with the BLTouch installation came early in the life of the product in 2016, when the BLTouch was brand new, and Marlin didn't support it by default.

I've had a three people tell me that the "BLTouch" is unreliable .... but in all three cases, those people had bought the cheap Chinese clone devices, and not the genuine ANTCLABS product.

I hope that information helps.

RoyG
Tevo Tarantula - Large Bed - E3dV6 - BLTouch
OctoPi (on a Raspberry Pi 3B)
Cura

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