How to get the best printing temperature for PLA

Most PLA filaments can print well between 180C and 210C, but this varies between manufacturers and filament thickness. The easiest way that you can get the best printing temperature for PLA filament is to print what is called a temperature tower

A temperature tower is a simple file that prints at different temperatures, thus allowing you to compare printing results for your filament. Setting up one of these towers is really easy to do in Cura.

Once you have loaded the stl file into Cura, set your print layer height to 0.2mm,infill percentage to 100% and your print temperature to 210C. Next, switch to layer view and scroll down the layers to the last layer of the 210C blocks.

You can see here that the first temperature change needs to happen at the end of layer number 38. Adding in a temperature is really easy to do in Cura. All you need to do is head to Extensions in the top left corner, select post processing and then modify G-code. This will bring up the post processing scripts menu. From here, you will want to select the Change at Z script and change a couple of settings.

In this menu you will want to change the trigger to Layer No. and then set the change layer to 38. After that, set the extruder 1 temperature to 205C. Now you have just set up the first temperature change of the tower! Time to repeat this process for the remaining temperature blocks.

The easiest way to do this is to figure out how many layers are in between the end of one temperature block to the end of the next. This can be done by scrolling through the layers until the 205C block has finished and then noting down the layer it ends on. In this case, its layer number 72. From here, you simply do 72-38 which gives you 34. This means that every 34 layers, you will want to trigger another temperature change.Once you have filled in all these scripts, you should have something that looks like this:

You can now save this to your SD card and set it to print! Once the print has completed, you will have a tower that will vary in quality as the temperature changes and you can see for yourself the best temperature for printing pla filament!

You can also watch our video tutorial on this below!

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