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How Do I Change Filament Colors or Materials?

    The easiest way to change your filament on your MakerBot Replicator is to use the built-in scripts at Utilities > Filament Options. There are options there for loading and unloading each of your MK8 Stepstruders. Just follow the instructions! 

    You can also load and unload filament using MakerBot Desktop. Connect your MakerBot Replicator to your computer using the USB cable that came with your MakerBot Replicator. In MakerBot Desktop, open the print monitor panel and select Change > Load for the extruder you're working with. Wait for the extruder to heat. When the extruder is fully heated, you'll hear a sound and MakerBot Desktop will display an image indicating that you can now load the filament. Push the filament into the extruder's loading tube until you can feel the motor pulling the filament in. When you see plastic emerging from the extruder nozzle, click Done.

    If you’re using our older software, ReplicatorG, you can use that as well to load and unload filament. Just heat up the extruder you're working with to 225° C. Then set the speed for that extruder to about 3.0 rpm, and run the motor backwards to unload. 30 seconds should be enough time to get your filament out. Once that's done, just run the motor forward while pushing the filament in to load it up again.

    If you're changing colors, you'll notice that you'll need to run the extruder for a few moments to clear out the old color. If you're changing materials, it can take even longer -- make sure that all the old material is extruded before you start a new print.


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