Hey, I just wanted to ask how you guys like/are using BuildTak. My school has a Makerbot Rep. 2 (4th gen), and just convinced them to buy a sheet of BuildTak to try it out…Two semi-serious jobs have gone on it in the last few days and this is what happened:

1st real job: a 10hr print using less than 200g, maybe even less than 100g. Adhered to the buildplate alright I guess, not any better than painters tape. Also there was poor layer adhesion throughout the print.

2nd real job (mine): A 9hr print using between 100g-200g as well. I was printing 6 of these: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:502526 arm to plate mounts at once. The printers are in the middle of a room that has two exits to the outdoors, and usually has 1 or both doors open, so as an expirement, I taped cardboard to the sides of the printer, and a clear acrylic sheet over the front in hopes they’d help with drafts. This time, the BuildTak did its job TOO well. The parts were printed well, and turned out very nicely even at .3mm resolution. BUT, they were stuck to the build plate. And I mean STUCK. I obviously printed them on their flat side, and as you can see it not huge, around 1in by 2in. But, they simply wouldn’t come off of the BuildTak, and when I got to the room, people were trying to remove the BuildTak itself to get them off! I got properly annoyed with them and then investigated the stuckness myself. Long story short, I had to use a rubber mallet to knock them off the build plate! I broke 1 of 6 in the process when exploring the best side to hit, but thats not the end of the world. Any ideas on how to get good adhesion with BuildTak but not too good?

Thanks, -Logan

3 Likes

@ADDprint @MidWestMade I know you’re using BuildTak - any tips on how to get a good adhesion, but still be able to remove prints easily? Cheers

So I purchased a “flexible” build plate, in my hub pictures I clip that onto the printers build plate. I stuck the BuildTak on one side of that, so I can flip it over to print PLA on the other side. I use pretty much just ABS on the BuildTak. I re-leveled my plate once that was on and had it nearly touching with a piece of paper in between the extruder head and the plate. Now my first few prints went well and they stuck right on, but I noticed that the longer/larger and more obscure the prints were, the harder it was to get them to stick. So currently I am using a raft with the BuildTak, not ideal but the rafts have always stuck when I used them with BuildTak. I’ve found that the more geometric your print is, the better it sticks. For example a square cube or circle will stick better than a star shape. However I have probably put ~30 hrs of printing onto my BuildTak and you can start to see some warping and overall it is getting worn and crispy. It works well for a while but I think I’ll have to get a new one soon. Let me know if this helps, I can go back and check my print settings if that helps too.

Here’s the link for flexible build plates, they’re worth the ~$30-40 as you can pull off the whole plate from the printer and “pop-off” the print versus yank around the printer’s plate.

http://printinz.com/

1 Like

Hey @loganj13 ,

When the nozzle height (z-offset) is set too close prints tend to adhere too well, and when the nozzle height is too far away prints tend to not adhere well enough. You have to find the sweet spot in the middle! You can find that sweet spot by leveling with 2 sheets of paper between the nozzle and build plate (with BuildTak on top) so there’s just the very slightest amount of friction.

Run a test print where set the nozzle height a bit further than you normally would and just look at the first layer of the print. From there you can incrementally adjust the nozzle down til you get the right amount of adhesion. It might take you a few times to get it right but once you get familiar with the process its really easy!

1 Like

Thanks for the help! Thats basically what I’ve done so far, but I’ve just been visually judging it distance between the nozzle and built plate. I’ve gotten good results with only the slightest gap visible between the two. Maybe .1mm-.3mm or around that. Very small gap.

1 Like

Great! .1mm-.3mm is the perfect range for getting the right adhesion.