In the test: Two Trees SK1 3D printer with CoreXY system

Two Trees SK1 3D printer review

Yay, my first 3D printer has arrived. Two Trees kindly made this little dream come true for me without me having to ask. The manufacturer wrote to me asking if I could Two Trees SK1 3D printer wanted to test it and as a technology nerd I somehow couldn't say no.

Transparency note: Nothing was paid for the contribution and there were no specifications or influence on this test report. So you get to read my unvarnished opinion - as it should be.

The Two Trees SK1 is a 3D printer with an XYCore motor system.
The Two Trees SK1 is a 3D printer with a CoreXY motor system that works without “traveling” stepper motors.

Test report from the beginner

If you already have a lot of experience with 3D printers, then I probably can't tell you much here. As already written, the Two Trees SK1 is my first 3D printer and accordingly the test report here is to be understood as a short assessment from a beginner for other beginners.

I would like to apologize at this point if I have used any technical terms incorrectly. If that is the case, please leave a comment and I will change it in the article or add information.

The Two Trees SK1 arrived well packaged - and almost fully assembled (photos: Sir Apfelot).
The Two Trees SK1 arrived well packaged - and almost fully assembled (photos: Sir Apfelot).

Special features of the Two Trees SK1

The Two Trees SK1 is a 3D printer that has some features that are not found on other models and are therefore worth mentioning in my opinion.

CoreXY system

The CoreXY system is responsible for the two horizontal axes of the print head. In many 3D printers, this system is built in such a way that the two motors that are responsible for the movement also move. This requires a high weight of the unit to be moved, which in turn prevents high speeds.

With the CoreXY system, the two motors are permanently attached to the housing, so movements only require moving the print head and the rails that support it.

This enables higher printing and movement speeds, which, like the Two Trees SK1, can reach up to 700 mm/s. This makes it 3 to 5 times as fast as other 3D printers.

There are various calibrations that can be started via the control panel.
There are various calibrations that can be started via the control panel.

Print bed and vibration calibration

When it comes to accuracy in 3D printing, you also have to take into account the unevenness of the print bed and the vibrations that arise during printing.

The Two Trees SK1 has a solution for both:

  • The print bed is measured by the print head with a 6×6 grid (36 measuring points) and this data is then taken into account during printing.
  • There is also a calibration to combat the vibrations, which specifically triggers vibrations and then measures the vibrations so that these can also be compensated for during printing.

I can't say to what extent this actually changes the end result, but since both functions can be started easily, from my point of view it's something to just take with you.

Maximum nozzle temperature of 300°C

Compared to the older SP-5 V3, the SK1 has a higher nozzle temperature, which is a maximum of 300 °C. This can also be used to process filaments that have a higher melting point.

Print area of ​​256 x 256 x 256 mm

The area in which the Two Trees SK1 can print things is also pleasantly large. With dimensions of 256 x 256 x 256 mm, relatively large objects can be printed. At least for me as a beginner, this seems to enable a relatively wide range of applications.

Here you can see the scope of delivery of the Two Trees SK1: the printer itself, assembly materials, a USB stick with demo data and configuration files, replacement nozzle, cleaning tool and much more.
Here you can see the scope of delivery of the Two Trees SK1: the printer itself, assembly materials, a USB stick with demo data and configuration files, replacement nozzle, cleaning tool and much more.

Technical data

For the sake of completeness, I would like to briefly list the technical specifications of the 3D printer so that people looking for specific features have the essential points in a table.

Manufacturers Two trees
Model SK1
Pressure area 256 x 256 x 256 mm
Dimensions 400 x 400 x 530 mm
print speed up to 700 mm / s
acceleration up to 20.000 mm/s2
Hotend temperature up to 300 ° C
Print bed temperature up to 100 ° C
Display 4,3 inches (touch and color)
Pressure plate calibration Z-Tilt leveling
firmware Clipper
Suitable filaments PLA, PETG
printbed Spring steel with PEI coating
Ports USB-A (2x), LAN (no SD)
Wi-Fi ja
Printhead lighting ja
Pressure room camera Optional
Enclosure Optional
Reference Two Trees Shop
One of the few steps involved in “assembling” the Two Trees SK1 is removing the transport locks.
One of the few steps involved in “assembling” the Two Trees SK1 is removing the transport locks.

Structure of the Two Trees SK1

Actually, the term “assembly” or “assembly” is too much, because the Two Trees SK1 arrives in the package 99% fully assembled.

The only thing I had to do after unpacking was these four things:

  • Removing transport locks and foam pads
  • Screw on the holder for the display
  • Screw on the holder for the filament roll
  • Screw on the WiFi antenna

That's all there is to do. And then the Two Trees 3D printer is ready for use.

Instructions are included for the few things that still need to be done.
Instructions are included for the few things that still need to be done.
With the display you have to screw in two screws and insert a plug - that's it.
With the display you have to screw in two screws and insert a plug - that's it.
All the material included is labeled with stickers and can also be found in the assembly instructions.
All the material included is labeled with stickers and can also be found in the assembly instructions.

Calibrations before the first print

Before you actually get started, you should carry out a few calibrations. Before that, of course, insert the filament. But it's very simple: you simply push it into the plastic tube by hand and then activate automatic loading of the filament in the settings.

But now to the calibrations:

Distance between printing plate and print head

One is the vertical distance of the print head to the printing plate. To do this, place a piece of normal printer paper between the plate and the print head and then start the settings. Using the touch display, you lower the print head manually until you can only move the paper against slight resistance.

I've read that other 3D printers tend to set a distance of the thickness of thin cardboard, but with the Two Trees SK1 you should actually use paper to get the best printing results.

Before you start printing, you can see how many meters of filament you will use.
Before you start printing, you can see how many meters of filament you will use.

Home calibration

This calibration is also carried out via the settings. When you start it, the print head moves to different places on the print bed and lowers itself.

Print bed calibration

With this function, the Two Trees SK1 uses the print head to measure any unevenness in the print bed and adjusts the printing process accordingly.

A total of 36 measurements are taken in a grid of 6 x 6 points. Due to the number of measurements, the process takes a few minutes.

Vibration suppression

This type of calibration seems particularly useful to me after I noticed how much my table wobbles when the SK1 moves back and forth at its impressive speed.

During calibration, the printer intentionally triggers vibrations at different frequencies and then measures the movements, which should then also be compensated for in the printing process.

The workmanship quality leaves nothing to be desired. Everything is built nicely and sturdily and looks good too.
The workmanship quality leaves nothing to be desired. Everything is built nicely and sturdily and looks good too.

quality of workmanship

Here I can actually only make a comparison between the laser engravers and the Two Trees, since I don't have two 3D printers to compare. The laser engravers are technically similar in design, as they also work with stepper motors and drive belts to move the laser head.

The structure of the frame and the other elements of the Two Trees SK1 is very high quality and stable. While with laser engravers you can create a slight twist with a little pressure, the frame of the Two Trees SK1 is so thick and robust that nothing moves.

The stepper motors are - as I read in another report that was more focused on the electronics - that the stepper motors in the 3D printer are very generously sized. This means that they are rather oversized, but this does not represent a disadvantage for the customer.

My feeling is that the build quality on the Two Trees SK1 is really high. Everything looks very valuable and you can definitely tell by the weight of the 3D printer.

The workmanship quality of the Two Trees printer is high and the connections are stable and have no noticeable play - good for print quality.
The workmanship quality of the Two Trees printer is high and the connections are stable and have no noticeable play - good for print quality.

The operation of the Two Trees SK1

A touch control element is installed on the printer itself, which is easy to read with a 4,3-inch screen diagonal and color reproduction. In principle, you can use this display to control everything there is to do: start calibrations, change settings, change filament, browse through the contents of the USB stick and start print jobs.

So far everything works well and you can also change the language to German, English and some other languages. From what I've seen, the few words found in the submenus are also well translated.

I still like to leave the language on such devices in English so that I can better understand instructions, which are usually in English.

This means that the operation via the display works so well for me that I don't actually need a direct connection to the computer. I always dragged the print files onto the USB stick (which was included) and then ran to the printer to print them out.

There are many 3D models on Thingiverse that you can download and print for free - perfect for beginners.
There are many 3D models on Thingiverse that you can download and print for free - perfect for beginners.

My process from Thingiverse to print

I have to admit that at first I felt like a fool when I dragged the files that I had downloaded from the Internet onto the USB stick and then wanted to print them out directly.

By the way, I can recommend Thingiverse as a good source for 3D printed models. While other portals like to advertise something as “free” and then try to force monthly membership fees out of you, Thingiverse is completely free.

But initially I thought you downloaded a file, which is usually in .stl format. I wanted to pass these directly to the 3D printer, but it didn't even display the STL files.

It took me a while to understand that in order to successfully 3D print things, you have to take the following route:

  1. Load STL file
  2. Open this file in a “slicer” like prusaSlicer
  3. Import the configuration data of the 3D printer into the slicer (which is also on the stick)
  4. then position the model in the center of the work surface
  5. Now press the “Slice now” button
  6. If errors occurred, correct them (e.g. place the model differently or activate supports)
  7. Now export the G-code file via File → Export → Export G-Code
  8. Drag the .gcode file to the USB stick
  9. Insert the USB stick into the 3D printer and navigate to the file and open it
  10. Start 3D printing

That's the rough approach in brief. Of course, you can also use other slicers, but it is important that you use this program to read the model in .stl format and then export it as a gcode file, because the 3D printer receives the exact instructions via this file as to when to go where must and where what is printed.

Simply put, the STL file is just the 3D model, while the GCode is the exact roadmap for the 3D printer. This is also adapted to the values ​​of the printer and therefore created individually for the respective device.

I use PrusaSlicer to convert the models from STL format to GCODE format.
I use PrusaSlicer to convert the models from STL format to GCODE format.

Compatible filament types

At 300° Celsius, the print head has a relatively high maximum temperature and can therefore process a number of materials for 3D printing. I have put together a short table for you about which types of filament the Two Trees SK1 can use and what properties and areas of application they have.

Type of filament Features Applications
PLA (polylactide) Biodegradable, easy to print, little distortion Prototypes, toys, non-functional art objects
ABS (acrylonitrile butadiene styrene) Strong, heat resistant, slightly more difficult to print Functional parts, housings for electronics, toys
PETG (polyethylene terephthalate glycol) Water-resistant, robust, flexible Containers, functional parts, outdoor equipment
TPU (Thermoplastic polyurethane) Flexible, elastic, abrasion resistant Phone cases, shoe inserts, flexible connectors
ASA (Acrylic Ester Styrene Acrylonitrile) UV and weather resistant, robust Outdoor applications, automotive parts, garden equipment
Nylon Tough, abrasion-resistant, flexible Gears, hinges, functional parts with high loads
PC (polycarbonate) Extremely heat-resistant, transparent, impact-resistant Industrial applications, safety glasses, high temperature parts

The printing process and the printing result

I immediately liked that the Two Trees SK1's built-in LED light makes it easier to watch the printing process. The light can of course also be deactivated via the display, but I still find the printing process so exciting that I like to take a look.

While printing myself, I noticed that the built-in motors seem to work quite quickly. According to technical data, the print head can reach speeds of up to 700 mm per second. In practice they probably won't be quite as fast, but they move the print head back and forth so quickly that my entire table shakes when the Two Trees Sk1 gets going.

On the left you can see the LED light strip that is installed in the Two Trees SK1.
On the left you can see the LED light strip that is installed in the Two Trees SK1.

Despite the speed, the printing result is extremely impressive - at least for me as a beginner. With your finger you can feel the steps that appear when you press each new layer, but you can't see much.

I only felt the heels with my fingernail and noticed them with the iPhone in macro mode, but everyone I showed the printed models to was seriously impressed by how delicate they turned out.

By the way, my favorite model is one of these Mini whistle, which I actually printed for fun. Now our dog is so trained to come back when he whistles that I printed out a few for other family members.

Here you can see the print quality of the Two Trees SK1 - on the left I have a 1 euro coin in my fingers so that you can compare the size.
Here you can see the print quality of the Two Trees SK1 - on the left I have a 1 euro coin in my fingers so that you can compare the size.

Criticism of the Two Trees SK1

Since I don't have another 3D printer to compare with, it's a little difficult for me to classify my point of criticism. So it may well be that what I'm pointing out here is the same in all other models from other manufacturers.

volume

My big point of criticism and actually the only thing that really bothers me is the volume. When the Two Trees SK1 is running and printing, you'll actually want to walk out of the room.

I can still work in the office thanks to the AirPods Max and their noise cancellation, but when a call comes, I have to leave.

I assume that all 3D printers make noise due to the necessary fans, but that's just something that bothers me - even with all the laser engravers that I've tested so far.

The Two Trees SK1 can be connected via Ethernet, WiFi or via the USB port or local storage such as a USB stick can be plugged in.
The Two Trees SK1 can be connected via Ethernet, WiFi or via the USB port or local storage such as a USB stick can be plugged in.

Short-term operational failures

I noticed that twice when I was in a submenu the printer would not respond for a few seconds.

I couldn't reproduce the error, but very rarely it would "go away" for a few seconds and no longer respond to input, even though I didn't carry out any action, just scrolled through the menus.

Firmware updates are not for beginners

I don't know how often you have to update the firmware on the printer. Currently it does everything I want it to and I don't see the need for a firmware update, but if I ever need to, the process isn't as beginner-friendly as I'd hoped.

With all the other devices I own, you just have to go to a menu, give the device internet access and then click on "Update firmware", but it's not that easy with the Two Trees SK1.

So that you can get an impression of the procedure, I have included a video here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z5aPX0ozp5c

Otherwise there is really little to complain about the device. However, I'm not an expert who really pushes all the printer's features to the limit, but as a beginner, the Two Trees SK1 really impresses me.

You can preview the print using the control panel and then start the process.
You can preview the print using the control panel and then start the process.
Here the little boat is on the move and is being printed layer by layer.
Here the little boat is on the move and is being printed layer by layer.
Here is the finished boat - I believe this model is printed on every 3D printer test.
Here is the finished boat - I believe this model is printed on every 3D printer test.

My conclusion

I admit, getting started with 3D printing was harder than I expected. But that was less due to Two Trees' 3D printer than to my lack of knowledge of exactly how to proceed and what steps are necessary to get from the downloaded model to the finished print.

The printing result, the quality of workmanship and the simple construction (the word is too much for the few screws that you have to screw in and out) are points that convinced me.

It's also good that you can use a relatively wide range of filament types due to the high maximum temperature: PLA, PETG, PC, ABS, TPU and nylon are just a few to choose from.

I'm still unsure how easy it is to get started with 3D printing. If you choose a model from Creality or Prusa, you'll have the “slicer” with you.

If I choose the Two Trees SK1, I have to import a configuration file into the slicer and can then still work with the apps from these manufacturers. It may be a small thing, but I wanted to mention it.

So short version of my assessment: The bottom line is that I like the Two Trees SK1. In my opinion, the volume and the process for updating the firmware could be improved. I couldn't have asked for more from the print quality - it's really great.

Would you like to take a look at the Two Trees SK1? Then please Right this way.

About Two Trees

Two Trees (Home) was founded with the aim of making it easier for beginners to access 3D printing. Since its founding, the company has specialized in the development and manufacture of 3D printers that stand out for their ease of use and reliability, but they also offer laser engravers and milling machines. In addition to the 3D printers, you can also buy filament and accessories in the Two Trees Shop.

The company attaches great importance to constant development in order to adapt its products to the needs and requirements of both hobby users and professional users. With a focus on technical innovation and practical application, Two Trees helps promote and simplify the dissemination and use of 3D printing.

My tips & tricks about technology & Apple

Did you like the article and did the instructions on the blog help you? Then I would be happy if you the blog via a Steady Membership would support.

Post a comment

Your e-mail address will not be published. Required fields are marked with * marked

In the Sir Apfelot Blog you will find advice, instructions and reviews on Apple products such as the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, AirPods, iMac, Mac Pro, Mac Mini and Mac Studio.