Bad prints out of brand New Form 3


The print definitely came out better than expected. The layer lines aren’t a huge problem as I’ll be sanding and polishing all prints prior to molding. The sharp details is what I was looking for. I’m now leaning toward the Form 3.


Thank you! You guys are so awesome. I am curious to see if black is any better than gray which monk2002uk posted above. For us, color doesn’t really matter because we will be casting replicas. Very few parts will come off the printer and go straight into the box.

Again, I know 25um is a big ask due to increased print time, but I feel it necessary for this model. Let me know costs and I’m happy reimburse you.

STL link:


The layer lines are pretty bad in these recent prints of the head and the wing.


I am printing in black 50 micron
I know you asked for 25- but i think that there is a misconception about 25 micron - thinking that it will give a smoother surface. your model is not suitable for 25 micron IMO.
I have spent hours on that with FormLabs support as initially I thought that I would want to print everything in 25 micron to get the best surface.

25 micron is designed for very fine details (in jewelry for example- a filigree ring would be a good choice). when large surfaces (like in your model) are used it is actually a disadvantage as the surface is rather large, and the layers are super thin- which in turns can create layer shifts or artifacts.

I am not an expert in this just my observations for printing my work and working with Formlabs to get the best results. In any case I am printing now the 50micron which should take about 3 hours. we can discuss later if you still want to see a 25 micron.


The orientation of the print in the grey one is not optimal. that’s why the layers are more visible.


Very cool, thank you! If it comes out nicely, the way we got there doesn’t much matter. The engraved panel lines are about 0.005" wide and they didn’t come out terribly well at 32 um on another printer. If the Form 3 can can get them done at 50um while preserving all the details that would be terrific news.


The details are definitely preserved at 25 microns. It will be very interesting to see the difference/s, if any, with 50 microns. For the types of figures that I print, mostly 1/285 scale, 50 microns is not fine enough. My models don’t have large surfaces but the layer lines are a bit more noticeable on an unpainted print at 50 microns. As the painted figure of the Russian Cossack shows, the layer lines are not a problem even at 50 microns.



Very helpful, @roypnyc.

@neilc777, I will retry the print with the latest software release, just downloaded today.



@Zachary_Brackin, I will try the reprint with your advice. Ideally it shouldn’t matter but I totally understand that, at least in the interim, things like orientation can make a difference. This is where your advice, and the experience of others, is so helpful.



Here are the pictures
Form 3, black resin, 50um
print took about 3 hours and 30 minutes, cured for 30 minutes.
over all the top is razor sharp, all details are visible. I didn not angle the piece cause I didn’t want to have support on the surface . in person the part is very smooth.



Whoa, that’s very nice. The detail is still very sharp at 50um, some of the engraved lines look a tad soft and may not survive post processing and polishing, but that’s nit-picking. The surface finish seems very nice as well, way better than my LCD printer at 50um.

If you’re in the US, would you mind sending it my way? If you have a paypal, we can exchange info and I’ll send the funds for shipping and your time.

Thanks again!


Same print in Grey v4 25 micron layers, with the wing oriented differently. This is the surface that had minor defects previously:



Thanks Robert, that looks much better. Well, I now have little doubt that the Form 3 is going to work for the projects we do. Thanks so much again for your help!


No problem, Neil. It will be a combination of the Form 3 and the support of others on this Forum. The latter have helped me a lot.



Just want to give an update on this in case anyone else is interested.
Managed to get my local reseller to print both Grey and Black v4 at 25 microns.

sprayed a thin coat of primer after taking these photos and it looks like both are equally detailed. was there a recent update for the gray resin? maybe gray performs as well as black now.


There was a recent update that did improve the performance of grey, but I don’t know how much testing has been done on it. I know I already bought a new tank and some black, so have just been using that, since it gets reliable results.


@zedabyu - thank you for posting these photos. The latest PreForm software update focused on Grey Pro, so just check if the dealer used this for the grey print. I used plain Grey.



So the opposite of my FDM printers? If this is true why is this info coming out now? I bought the printer for its 25 micron printing. My very experienced re-seller never mentioned this. Formlabs never advertised there was a asterix next to 25 microns. No caveat.

Lets be real… Formlabs are struggling to get 50micron working. So forgive me if this 25 micron explanation sounds like a big fat excuse.


I am sorry for sounding like a jerk Donnie. But what you are responding to is partially true.
you have to understand how these printers work to be able to make sense of that or have been 3d printing long enough with any printer to realize that large parts are difficult to print in very thin layers.

look up or find an object that is* 25 microns so you can realize how crazy thin that is. It is all about scale. Now yes, the formlabs seem to need some work… you are right on that and as a result I have postponed my purchase.

*edited because I realized I was missing a ton of words and letter as I typed from my phone earlier


You dont - no worries - my point is if it IS TRUE that fundamentally 25 microns should be reserved for small jewelry pieces, and we should not expect to print smooth open areas then I bought the wrong machine. I think I`m not alone.

I spent about 7,000 Canadian $, maybe 8K on the printer and accessories. After liters of wasted resin I literally have not had one single print that is usable. Clear resin is a dumpster fire. The time i`ve wasted is mind blowing too.

Why arent they updating their information to resellers? Mine knew nothing of this 25 micron limitation. In fact we were told the opposite. 25 micron is better in every way…except speed.

With the problems Formlabs are having I`m not saying you or formlabs theory is wrong - but this information is bad news for a lot of customers.

Although I dont get if 25 microns just cant do what we want WHY are they are telling me and others they are working to fix this very problem. Is it possible or impossible? Do they know they cant fix it but are stringing us along?