When I first saw the Triangle Labs Dragon hotend I was intrigued. There were some interesting features with the hot end such as having nickel plated copper heat block to heat up quicker and a different heat break design that allowed for both a minimal size but structural integrity to reduce damage. I was fortunate that Triangle Labs sent me one to test out in exchange for a review, so let’s have a look…
From their listing :
Superior heat break performance
Increased structural rigidity
450°C rated for larger temperature operating range
Drop in replacement for E3D V6 hotend
The HF version(High Flow Capacity) is the same overall dimensions as the standard one
Collision will not break your heatbreak anymore
Nozzles can be changed with one hand, without grasping the hot block Nickel plating copper alloy in the hot block will not soften at high temperatures in excess of 550℃
Maximum extrusion flowrate test result (PLA@215C)
E3D V6 HOTEND copper heater block 1020mm/min ≈ 40.01 mm³/second
Dragon hotend 1150 mm/min ≈46.08 mm³/second
Dragon hotend HF 1560 mm/min ≈62.51 mm³/second
I have ben a loyal E3D V6 user for many years. Once I received the Dragon hotend from Triangle Labs, I noticed it was heavier. I weighed it to compare against a standard e3d V6. The Dragon was indeed heavier by 15g.
You could certainly feel the difference in weight by hand. Triangle Labs has been known to make high quality parts and this was no different. It looked like it was made well. It had a high quality feel to it and I had no reason to second guess the quality based on an initial inspection of the part.
I installed it on an Ender 5 Plus using a Triangle Labs extruder in a direct drive conversion. I also installed an E3D 0.6mm Nozzle X after a few tests prints with the stock nozzle.
I’ve used it extensively over the last few months printing all the parts for my MPCNC Primo CNC.
Early on, I experienced one mechanical failure with the Dragon. There are very small screws that hold the heatbreak structure onto the e3d grove mount adapter.
The screws found themselves loose mid-print and the assembly fell apart causing a print failure. I was easy to discover why the print failure happened and I was fortunate to find the screws still on the build plate. I re-assembled and had absolutely no issues since then. I regret not double checking those screws prior to installation which may have avoided the failure.
Print after print, a few tests first, and then specifically parts for my MPCNC Primo, the Triangle Labs Dragon hotend performed well. I did not have any heat creep based clogs, or any clogs for that matter. It very much performed without complaint. No leaks came from the hot end at any point.
Hotends don’t get a lot of attention because generally, when put together properly, and having a good design, they should just work. That was my experience. It just worked. It helped that my printer worked well itself, but the Dragon integrated without issue and did not cause me any headaches.
The hotend worked fine with the original 0.4mm stock nozzle, and then with the 0.6mm E3D Nozzle-X. There were no clogs or flow issues, and I printed with PLA and PETG.
While I did receive this for review, I try to remain as unbiased as possible. I have used genuine E3D V6 hot ends on all my personal printers I keep. I have long admired the reliability I received out of them. The Triangle Labs Dragon hotend has been as reliable for me, since that first initial incident, as the E3D’s I would commonly install. I have no hesitation recommending this hotend for use and I will be keeping it on my personal Ender 5 Plus.