We will show you how to prepare 3D prints in Cura. Different printers and filaments can be set and numerous printing properties can be determined. Along with Prusa Slicer, it is one of the most popular slicing software for 3D printing.
Table of Contents
Use the latest version
In order to use the latest features and settings, we recommend that you download the latest version of Cura. Furthermore, you can find Cura 3D for download for Windows, Mac and Linux at this link.
Set your printer
At the beginning of the configuration, select your 3D printer from a large list of presets. If your printer does not appear you will have to import your settings manually.
- If you have a printer connected to your network you can use this option.
- As a rule, the most common 3D printers can also be found in this selection list.
You can also define your personal settings such as language or program design in the menu under Configuration under Configure Cura. We noticed that unfortunately not all texts are available in German. After you restart Cura 3D, some translation texts will be dragged.
- You can select here which setting category should be edited.
- At this point you change the language.
Insert files into Cura 3D
To do this, use the folder icon in the upper left corner. There you select your 3D model with the supported file types. Common file types are .stl, .obj or .amf. Now you should see your model on the printing plate.
- Move your part on the printing plate to set the printing location. Tip: The thermal properties are best in the middle.
- Scale your part if you want to deviate from the specified dimensions.
- Rotate your part manually.
- Automatically lay it down flat.
- Choose the area that you want to be on the print base. To do this, click this button and then select the surface on which you want to position your part.
Set or add material in Cura
Next, you should choose the material used. To do this, open the drop-down menu at the top center.
- If you can’t find your filaments there, we recommend importing the settings from your printing. You can download settings values for the Prusa MK3S on this page.
- Alternatively, you can create the material yourself and enter the properties manually.
Set print properties in Cura 3D
Now you can set the final print properties. In this way, you influence the layer height, the filling and thus also the printing time.
- Use this slider to determine the layer height. For a nozzle of 0.4 mm, good results can be achieved with a setting of 0.2 mm.
- With the filling, you can vary depending on the requirements of the part. In addition, it also depends on how the part is built. If the filling serves as a support, it should not be omitted in any case.
- Next, you can specify the support structure. You should definitely use this if your parts are printed with less than 45° to the printing board. This will help you avoid faulty prints.
- Adhesion is especially important if you have a small area on the printing board or a material that inherently adheres poorly to the surface. Furthermore, additional adhesion is highly recommended for particularly taller parts.
Now comes the big moment. Previously you have set your preferences in Cura 3D and now you press Slice. After a moment of calculation you will see the printing time.
- Press Preview.
- Drag the slider to check your layers.
- If you are satisfied with the preview and the printing time, then save the GCode to your hard disk
Use GCode file from Cura 3D
After you have exported the GCode it is time to feed your 3D printer with the file. Depending on the 3D printer, you can use the internal storage facility for this or use a print server such as Octoprintto read in the file.
Cura 3D Slicer is a great open source program that helps you as a maker to slice the prints individually. It always depends on which quality objectives are required. However, if you have a Prusa printer, we would like to introduce you to the Prusa Slicer program. In doing so, you natively have the right settings for your printer at the ready.