SLA tips

Many of you are starting to become more familiar with the Form2 SLA printers so I want to quickly go over some tips on how to use them.


If you have not already, make sure you watch our SLA video which goes over most things you need to know made by 2nd LT Joel Austin '19: https://www.makerspaceusna.com/how-to-printer-videos?wix-vod-video-id=9a9b6d772082458a82f8cee0179b9781&wix-vod-comp-id=comp-jy1te2gk#


Also we do have a forum dedicated to SLA printing although there has not been much activity yet: https://www.makerspaceusna.com/forum/formlabs


So here are some tips:


- Cleanliness is EVERYTHING. Keep the printers clean. The resins are not hazardous but they are messy. I wear gloves just to try and keep things clean.


- There are 2 sensors for the resin trays. One is the sensor for the tray type (you can see this as 3 little pins on the printer) and the other is a level sensor that is in the back lower side of the printer facing into the resin tray. Both of these can be quite difficult.


- There is also a sensor for the resin cartridge which you can see on the bottom of the cartridge near the "nipple". This one is not normally a problem.


- The "best" resins (i.e. have the least problems) are: grey pro, the normal color ones like white/black/clear, and high temperature. The flexible resin is really cool but is VERY difficult to print with. The tough and durable resins also have significant problems. Although the clear resin is easy to use and good, we have dedicated projects that use clear resin only so do not use clear resin without discussing with me first.


- Do not use new trays or new cartridges until you have to. If you have questions, ask me or Marc.


- If you do use a new tray, label it using the label maker (in both sides of the lab).


Final point, SLA is more expensive and takes longer so SLA is not the time to just "practice". You need to have a good handle on 3D printing before moving to this step.


Happy Printing!


R/CAPT Baker

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Online since June 2019.  Last major edit:  22 Aug 2021