Fan Functionality on the Printrbot Play

Over the course of the life of the Play, there have been a number of fan wiring configurations as well as a handful of firmware releases.  All of this iteration has begun to add up to some confusion for Play users, both new and old.  Let us consider this article a "State of the Union ...of the fans" address.  There are a few possible scenarios for fan wiring/control.  See below, to find which one applies to you.


As of 3/1/17, the most current firmware/Printrboard F6 combination gives the user control over the FAN1 connector (print cooling fan).  In other words, you can power FAN1 on/off with the M106/M107 commands as well as enable cooling at a specific Z height (Cura 15 > Advanced > Cool > Enable cooling fan > ... > Expert config).






Printrboard F6.  Two separate fan extensions. 

You have the option to run a hot end-cooling fan (FAN2) along with a print-cooling fan (FAN1).  You need two individual fan extensions to do this.  This is the current "stock" configuration for the Play.






Printrboard F6.  One fan extension, plus a Dual Fan Adapter Cable. 

If your Play came with a Rev F5 Printrboard, but you have since upgraded to F6, you may find yourself with only one fan extension.  To power both fans, you will need a Dual Fan Adapter Cable to connect to FAN1. 

You will manually control both fans at the same time. With this configuration, it is recommended to power your fans on manually (M106) as soon as you power your bot ON.  This will help prevent clogging in your hot end.  It's easy to start heating your hot end before loading a print and then get distracted.  Before you know it your hot end has been heating, uncooled for 25min.  Not ideal.  You can also include 'cool at height' controls.





Printrboard F5.  One fan extension, plus a Dual Fan Adapter Cable. 


If you are using a Printrboard F5 without header pins and a single fan extension that splits out to the two 30mm fans, your setup is similar to the one just above.  Your FAN connector controls both fans simultaneously.  

Again, with this configuration, it is recommended to power your fans on manually (M106) as soon as you power your bot ON to avoid clogging in your hot end.  You can also include 'cool at height' controls in your slicing.





Printrboard F5.  Two separate fan extensions. Header pins required.

If you have a Rev F5 Printrboard w pins, you can control your fans separately.  You will need two separate fan extensions for each 30mm fan.  With the upper fan (hot end fan) wired into the ISCP and hot end power pins, the upper fan will power ON as soon as the bot is powered ON.  You can issue M106/M107 commands to control the lower fan (print fan).  You can also include 'cool at height' controls. 


  • Solder ICSP header pins onto your Printrboard.  Click here for video instructions.  
  • Remove power wire (red) from the female end of your fan extension.
  • Plug the remaining black cable, still inside of the wire housing into ICSP1.
  • Plug the free power wire (red) into the 12v constant pin in your HOTEND connector.
  • Pics below.










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  • 0

    Good morning, 


    I just upgraded my simple metal 1403 to the new ubis hotend, removing the old ceramic model.  I have Rev F5 board and hooked up via the above article to have the hotend fan run continuously, while keeping the print fan on its separate controls.  One problem I have is that the fan will run with the above mentioned hookups.  However, the machine will not talk to the computer with the ISPC1 pin connected to the ground.  I open CURA, load a model and could not open the ponterface control window.  After trouble shooting, I removed the ground from ISPC 1 pin and viola, the computer talks to the printer.  There must be something interfering with the communication with this pin.  Is there another place I can hook up the ground to besides splicing into the other fan ground?

    Thanks for all the help.



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