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Frequently Asked Questions

How To Install    Choosing Tubing    Selecting Fittings    Measuring Filament    Safety Precautions    Troubleshooting   

Q: Why is Bowden Drive superior to Direct Drive?

A: It may seem counterintuitive, but Bowden systems allow the extruder motor to be mounted away from the hot end, reducing the amount of mass moving around. This allows the machine to move at higher speeds and increased accuracy.

Q: What makes Capricorn Bowden Tubes the best?

A: Our tubing features the highest quality pure PTFE, high performance additives, and the most accurate inner diameter, for better prints every time. Just ask our fans on social media, or check out our Technical Specifications Page for more details.

Q: Can I use the stock fittings with Capricorn tubing?

A: Yes, you can re-use the original fittings that came with your printer, as long as they weren't damaged during removal. We recommend replacing them for best performance however.

Q: Which of your premium Bowden tubes is right for me?

A: That depends on your particular application. For help in choosing, please see our Product Selection page.

Q: Can I print X filament material in my Y printer with your tubing?

A: This question has as much to do with safety as it does whether it physically "will work." Please read our Safety Page for a more in-depth answer.

Q: Where can I buy Capricorn Bowden Tubes

A: You can purchase them in our shop, or from one of our many fine Authorized Resellers around the globe.

Q: How do I cut and install my new Bowden Tube

A: Check out our How To Page for further instructions.

Q: What is the best Bowden tube I can buy for my 3D printer?

A: Captubes makes the best Bowden tubes for your 3D printer.

Q: How do I install my new Capricorn PTFE Bowden tube?

A: It's super easy! For many people, this is the first printer upgrade they make. There are many great videos on the web that will show you how. Just remove your old tube by pressing the collets on the push-connect fittings, measure and cut your new tube to the same length, and insert the new tube. Always "measure twice, cut once."

Q: Is PTFE the same thing as Teflon?

A: Teflon is the brand name of the first PFTE, which was synthesized many years ago by DuPont. The patent expired long ago and there are now several brands of PTFE.

Q: Is this PTFE the same thing used in non-stick cookware?

A: Yes, non-stick cookware is usually coated with PTFE.

Q: Is it true that PTFE is banned in Europe?

A: No. Some chemicals that have been used in the production of PTFE are banned in the EU and other places. These chemicals are not used in our production process and we are RoHS certified, free of harmful chemicals.

Q: I bought "Capricorn" tubing on Aliexpress or Alibaba. Is it fake?

A: Almost certainly. We do not sell on these platforms and neither do any of our authorized resellers. If you buy from Amazon or eBay be sure to check who the seller is. You can find our list of sellers here: Authorized Resellers

Q: What is the first upgrade I should make to my 3D printer?

A: Captubes is the most bang-for-the-buck upgrade you can make for your 3D printer, and most new hobbyists choose to make it their first. It is also generally the easiest and doesn't require any special tools or knowledge of electronics.

Q: How can I tell if I bought counterfeit Capricorn tubing?

A: The best way to garantee that you have real captubes is to buy from us or one of our authorized resellers. Historically, we have also used stickers to authenticate our tubing. Fake Capricorn stickers are made from low quality materials and details of the logo will appear slightly "off." Beginning in 2023 we will be laser-etching batch numbers onto our tubing as well.

Q: How many Bowden tubes do I need?

A: Most printers have only one or two. If you have a multi-material printer it may use one for each material. For most single-material printers one meter of tubing is enough. For multi-material machines we recommend purchasing two meters. Our tubing is sold by the meter and cut to length by the end-user.

Q: Will this work on my printer?

A: Almost all printers use a standard 4mm Outer Diameter (OD) Bowden tube, with a 1.75mm filament. A few use a larger filament (2.85 or 3.00) with a 6.35mm OD tube. If yours is the latter, you will know because you have to buy special filament.

Q: Will my Bowden tube help the environment?

A: By producing better prints with less failures, we are helping to keep plastic out of our landfills every day! We encourage printing with PLA, a naturally bio-degradable and recyclable plastic made from corn.

Q: How long does it take to work?

A: You will see results instantly after installing your new Bowden tube! Our stronger fittings, premium PTFE, tight inner diameter, improved Young's Modulous, and high lubricity additives will all work together to produce better print quality. But after some tweaking of your settings, you will be able to get even better results. For example, you will be able to reduce your retraction, which will reduce clogs and shorten print times.

Q: Can I purchase Captubes in my country?

A: We ship to almost any country in the world, except for those with restrictions such as Iran or North Korea. To save money however, we recommend purchasing from one of our Authorized Distributors in a country near you. Most of our distributors carry our most popular products, but please note that our less common products are not carried by most distributors and may need to be ordered from us directly.

Q: I placed an order from Capricorn forever ago, but my package hasn't arrived yet.

A: Deliveries using our standard shipping options should take no more than 3 days within the USA, or 21 days internationally. If this time has been exceeded, please check the tracking information first. (You should have received an email with the tracking number when the item was shipped.)

If it says the package has already been delivered, check with your neighbors or other people in your building who may have signed for it. We find that almost every single time, the package eventually turns up.

If you believe the package was stolen, or something else out of the ordinary happens, we can ship you a replacement.

Q: I'm a bit puzzled by your offerings for 2.85 mm filament.
For your 1.75 mm filament you reduced the inner diameter to reduce filament backlash and therefore improve print quality. For 2.85 mm filament you increased the inner diameter. I'd expect with the larger volume per unit length of 2.85 mm filament that this would exacerbate changes in nozzle pressure and make the effects of filament backlash worse.
Will you be releasing a version with a smaller ID?

A:Thanks for asking. We ended up going with 3.2mm ID, which is what Ultimaker uses, after a number of trials of other sizes. This is actually much tighter than most 2.85 tubing which is 4.0mm ID. We found that with the additional stiffness of the thicker filament, reducing the diameter any further caused too much friction, and did not work reliably.

Q: How can I sell Capricorn products in my own retail shop or website?

A: We would love to do business with you! Please contact for wholesale pricing. Note that as of April 2019 we are currently not accepting any new Amazon sellers.

How To Install    Choosing Tubing    Selecting Fittings    Measuring Filament    Safety Precautions    Troubleshooting