Print3r Slicing Server

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The Print3r Slicing Server provides automated STL to GCODE translation using Slic3r and an enterprise-level message bus implemented with Java Camel. The code can be downloaded from https://github.com/Terawatt-Industries/print3r. The Github Wiki has installation and usage instructions.

This server is a beast! It is best for generating multiple GCode files from one STL. You may want to do this if you have multiple machines available to you and/or if you use different print materials, filament sizes, or other things you may use in your configuration INIs such as cooling or support material. With the Prin3r slicing server you define you configuration INI files, start the server, and drag-and-drop (or copy) STL files to the "stldrop" folder. This workflow is far more efficient and less prone to human error than running slic3r before each print, loading and tweaking the configuration, and exporting GCode.

Given multiple Slic3r configuration INI files it can easily generate multiple GCode files from one STL. Each output GCode file has a unique name that reflects the configuration that was used. The slicing server can also be configured to use multiple Slic3r executables - each using its own configuration INI(s). This may sound great but in practice the permutations can become unmanageable for humans so it's best to keep the server configuration as light as possible.

If the number of concurrent threads is higher than 2 it can easily bring your machine's CPU to its knees because Slic3r is very CPU intensive. Furthermore, the filesize of GCode files is non-trivial, often in the range of 10-50 MB - so it's easy to start accumulating gigabytes worth of GCode.

Despite some of the challenges in managing permutations of megabyte-sized files, GCode takes 10-30 minutes to generate and is best when it can be re-used, especially on shared machines like those at SSD.

The Print3r Github page calls it a print and slicing server however the codebase on Github does not currently expose a 3D Printer Server - only a slicing server.

When we get a server instance setup at SSD we'll rewrite this page to be instructions on its use at the space...