In this article, we will explain a popular discussion between direct drive vs Bowden extruder.
The basic principle is the same and here are the differences:
Understand the basics helps understand the pros and cons of both systems.
FDM printers use either direct drive or Bowden extruder setups, and the extruder pushes the filament through a heated nozzle and the difference is where the extruder sits.
Direct Drive Extruder
Cartesian or CoreXY printer has the more sturdy frame to work with a direct drive extruder with no problem.
- Compatiable with most filaments
- Less powerful motor
- Better and easily retract filament
- Much more reliable
- Can cause more vibration with the extruder mounted to the print head
- Much more maintenance
For precise and fast printing using standard material, the bowden extruder system yields great results. The printer pushes and pulls filament with a long PTFE Bowden tube to the warm end.
- Smoother movement due to reduced weight
- Higher quality prints
- Slow response time
- Friction between filament going through the tube calls for more torque to adequately control the filament
- Some filament material can easily bind or wear in bowden tubes