Like most of you, I have been trying various DIY curing enclosures for my SLA printing. I could not get myself to spend the money for the Form Cure (but I did buy the Form Wash!) Since designing is what I like to do (almost 70 US patents!) I designed my own. My design inputs were:
- Table top design
- Looks similar to the Form Cure
- Uses readily available components
- Timer (Standard AC wall timer. I paid $10 on eBay. They are normally twice that)
- Temperature Readout ($5 on eBay)
- “ON” / “OFF” Light indicator
- Top opening must allow the Build Platform to fit inside
What you see below is the finished product. I had to design it around the maximum printing dimension of my FlashForge Creator Pro FDM printer. It is made from eight interlocking FDM printed sections. A couple of the corners did not stay flat while printing, but I used them anyway because the prints averaged 11 hours each!
The first photo is the completely assembled Cure Station. No glue was used to hold the station together. The flexible mirror had a poor adhesive backing so it slightly bucked. It looks much worse than it actually is.
Temperature display was $5.00 on eBay. https://www.ebay.com/itm/Digital-LCD-Display-Temperature-Meter-Thermometer-Temp-Sensor-w-Probe-Black-US/191890063642?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649
The next photo is the bottom four pieces locked together with the electrical timer and temperature readout. The sensor from the readout is place into the top portion. The bottom portion also holds the power supply for the UV LEDs.
Below is the top half put together.
I purchased two sheets of flexible mirror. One sheet was enough to line the sides of the top and bottom portion (https://www.ebay.com/itm/Flexible-Mirror-Sheets-11-9-X-17-9-Inch-Soft-Non-Glass-Cut-To-Size-Craft-2-pk/173615651610?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649). The second sheet as shown below was enough to cover the floor and ceiling of the station.
Here is the bottom portion with the flexible mirrors and 5 meters of 5050 UV LED lighting strips. I only placed the LEDs on the bottom half because with all the mirrored surfaces the light, traveling at 186,000 miles per second, and bouncing off the mirror surfaces filled the chamber completely. You also DO NOT need a rotating table, cool but totally unneeded
Here are the two halves before I set the top on the bottom. The temperature sensor can be seen in the top.
Finally a montage of the LEDs on, a closeup of the ON/OFF Indicator light (which is actually a piece of 1/4" diameter acrylic rod that enters the curing chamber), the cure station with a build plate inserted and finally the cure station next to the Form Wash, Form 2 and my FDM printer. Yes, there is an exhaust fan in the wall. It was not put there for the nasty fumes from the SLA resin, but this use to be my photography darkroom!
Even though this cures the “rigid” resin rock hard after two hours; my next revision to the design will be adding a “mini” heater to it. All the electrical will be controlled by the timer. I am in the search for a small heating unit that I can vary the temperature for 60C and 80C.