The numbers that align your layer height with the steps on the 3D printer’s Z-axis stepper motor are known as Ender 3 magic numbers. You’ll obtain much better-looking prints if your layer height is multiple of the minimum height your Z-axis can shift.
We’ll look into the Ender 3 magic numbers in this post.
Magic Numbers in Ender 3
The Creality Ender 3 and all Creality printers have a magic number of 0.04. As a result, the layer height should be in 0.04 increments:
- 0.04 mm
- 0.08 mm
- 0.12 mm
- 0.16 mm
- 0.2 mm
- 0.24 mm
- 0.28 mm
- 0.32 mm
I wouldn’t go higher than 0.32mm layer height on the default Ender 3 nozzle.
Ender 3 comparison guide can be found here.
The Significance of Ender 3 Magic Numbers
Magic numbers are significant because they assist your 3D printer in producing the highest possible quality 3D print. You’ll be astonished at how better things will be after getting the magic numbers right.
You might obtain pretty good prints with a 0.2mm layer height but always simply OK prints with a 0.1mm layer height. But you could have gotten far more excellent high-resolution prints if you had set the magic numbers back then!
3D printers do not use a closed-loop feedback system, which means that communication is one-way only. If your 3D printer instructs your stepper motor to move in a certain number of steps, the printer assumes the motor has moved. The printer has no means of knowing whether it has advanced that far.
As a result, regardless of whether the first set of instructions was correctly executed, the following set is sent, resulting in failure prints!
The name comes from the fact that stepper motors move in steps.
This could be a large or small step. A complete step is a turn that ends with an electromagnet in alignment. A whole step is exact, and you can know precisely how far it traveled.
A micro-step is a turn between two electromagnets that ends midway. Two magnets are used to bring the shaft halfway to a stop, but there is no means of knowing whether it is precisely halfway or slightly off.
“By a little” is the crucial phrase here. Your prints will not be awful if you do not employ magic numbers, as the difference is tiny. However, if you utilize them, you will notice a significant boost in quality.
You may avoid any guesswork by coordinating your layer heights with the steps on your motors.
How to figure out magic numbers
The magic numbers for most common 3D printers may be found on forums and social media. Still, if you want to calculate them yourself, Prusa Research’s excellent calculator can help.
Here’s what you’ll need to know:
- Motor step angle
- Leadscrew pitch
- Gear ratio
- Pitch presets
- Finally, specify the layer height you want.
The calculator will show you in red if your layer height does not match the motor steps and propose a better layer height in green.
You don’t need to use the calculator every time because you can look at the green results and see what they’re multiples of to get to the magic number.
Ender 3’s 3D printing game will radically change once you include magic numbers. It’s not natural to use layer heights to two decimal places, but you’ll notice a significant improvement once you do.