The All Metal Hotend Conversion Kit is a drop-in upgrade for Creality 3D Printers, including the Ender 3, Ender 5 and CR-10 series.
- Safely print at temperatures up to 300° C
- Polished Titanium heatbreak eliminates heat creep
- Extrude filament faster than PTFE lined hotends
- Compatible with standard Creality MK8 nozzles
All metal hotends are a highly beneficial upgrade for Creality 3D Printers. When configured correctly, they are just as reliable as stock, but also capable of much more. By eliminating the PTFE liner inside of the heatbreak, it's safe to print high temperature filaments and able to extrude at faster speeds.
There are however small differences between all metal and PTFE lined hotends that can make or break the experience. Before getting started, familiarize yourself with these necessary adjustments.
Print Temperature: When printing PLA filament, the print temperature needs to be increased, often 10-15° Celsius higher than the stock hotend. Alternatively, start at the higher end of the manufacturer's recommended temperature range. For example, Overture PLA recommends printing their filament between 190-220C. The lower end will work for standard PTFE lined hotends, but to achieve the same results on all metal, 210C or higher will usually be needed.
The PTFE lining on a standard hotend acts as insulation. With this no longer present, additional heat is required to extrude the same low temperature plastics.
Retraction Distance: Retraction distance for all metal hotends will be roughly halved, regardless of filament type. While calibrating this setting, it's better to have the value set too low rather than too high, otherwise it may cause clogs. The following are good median starting values, choose the one applicable to your 3D Printer.
- Bowden Extruder: 3.5mm
- Direct Drive Extruder: 1.0mm
1. Remove Shroud
Using the 2mm hex driver included with the 3D Printer, loosen and remove the (2x) M3 bolts in the hotend shroud.
These screws are located on the front of most Creality 3D Printers. However, certain models such as the Ender 3 V2 and Ender 3 Max are threaded from the back.
Depress the PTFE coupler fitting to release, then slide the bowden tube out of the heatsink.
2. Disconnect Wiring
Using a Phillips head screwdriver, remove the M3 set screw holding the thermistor leads in place. Carefully remove the bead thermistor from inside of the heater block.
Loosen the M3 grub screw on the bottom of the heater block using the 2mm hex driver. Slide the heater cartridge out of the heater block.
3. Remove Hotend
The hotend mounts to the backplate using (2x) M3x16mm screws. Using the 2mm hex driver, loosen these screws and remove the stock hotend.
4. Install Heatbreak
Thread the polished Titanium heatbreak into the top of the heater block. Using the included 7mm wrench, tighten the heatbreak to ensure it's fully seated.
Do NOT overtighten the heatbreak at this stage. Doing so at room temperature can potentially cause damage to the components.
5. Install Nozzle
Thread the nozzle into the bottom of the heater block by hand until it bottoms out.
6. Attach Heatsink
Loosen the grub screw at the base of the heatsink. Insert the Titanium heatbreak into the bottom, then re-tighten the grub screw to secure it in place.
7. Mount Hotend
Using the M3x16mm screws from Step 3, mount the all metal hotend to the backplate.
8. Attach Wiring
Place the thermistor's glass bead inside of the lower, unthreaded hole on the side of the heater block. Insert the M3 set screw between the thermistor leads, threading it carefully into the hole above the bead. Tighten until the wires are held in place, but not pinched between the set screw and heater block.
Using the 2mm hex driver, loosen the (2x) M2.5mm clamping screws on the underside of the heater block. Insert the heater cartridge and tighten the clamping screws, making sure it's securely fastened in place.
9. Preheat Hotend
To prepare for the next step, turn on the 3D Printer and pre-heat the hotend to a minimum of 240° Celsius. This will be sufficient for printing standard filaments such as PLA and ABS.
For those that intend to print materials with higher heat requirements (e.g. PETG, Nylon or Polycarbonate), increase the pre-heat temperature at least 5-10 degrees warmer than the desired printing temperature. Please note, the stock thermistor has a firmware limitation of 275° Celsius.
Once the hotend has pre-heated to temperature, place the included 7mm wrench at the base of the heatbreak. This will brace the lower hotend assembly and prevent it from twisting.
While holding the 7mm wrench firmly on the heatbreak, carefully tighten the nozzle using a 7mm socket wrench. Use between 1.5 - 2.5 Nm of torque, or roughly one finger of pressure. Overtightening the nozzle at this stage may cause it to shear off at the threads, it should turn no more than 1/16th of a rotation.
Why is this important?
The hotend may feel tight at room temperature, but metal expands when heated and shrink as it cools. This slight fluctuation in size (combined with machine vibrations) can cause the various components to shift during use. When that occurs, the nozzle and heatbreak may separate inside of the heater block, creating a gap where molten filament can escape.
To prevent such leaks from occuring, 'heat tightening' firmly seats the nozzle against the heatbreak, ensuring the filament channel remains enclosed during use.
11. Install Shroud
Using the 2mm hex driver, re-install the hotend shroud using the original screws.