Z-axis issues, Express: heavy fall, stuttering, stalls

I am trying to get my Express to work out of the box. I’ve spent some time now trying to get the Z-axis to function properly [Y works great; X is close but I’m going for one thing at a time here.]

The hardware on the Z axis is struggling to say the least. Sometimes it can move mostly up or down, but never all the way. The load is quite high and seems to be labouring.

  • One issue is just that in neutral, non functioning mode, the whole Z axis can sometimes just…fall? It spins with gravity right to the bottom. So I tighten the wheels and check the spacers, whether tightened or loosened, it still happens.

  • In both up and down directions, it will occasionally do a 3 move stutter and give me a relative movement error. Not always, but sometimes.

  • If it ever actually moves more than say 300mm without a stutter, it sure sounds like she’s struggling. Like the motor can’t handle the weight.

Thanks for your time, I’ll listen to any advice.


@kegli We have a feature called “Always Power Motors” to solve this problem. The reason this happens is that the weight of the Z-Axis is enough to pull the axis to the ground over time. By applying power to the z-axis at all times, it is possible to resist gravity:


Rory or Marc will reach out to you soon with regards to the other issues.

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Rick, in my picture above yours you can see I have it on as well.