Budget UV Cure Box (Jar?)


about how long was the string of the LED’s you used? i’m seeing 5 meter strings online, but all are going for around 75 dollars.
were you able to score a partial string for the 20 bucks you paid?
brilliant work, by the way. if the budget allows- i’m totally gonna make my own!


I was totally in the market to make one of these, and thought that LED light strips would be the key. Does anyone know if these bad boys would do the trick?



You want something as close to 400nm frequency. Much more than +/-15nm is probably no good. If these meet the frequency criteria, you should be all set.

Has anyone used the tough resin yet?

about how long was the string of the LED’s you used? i’m seeing 5 meter strings online, but all are going for around 75 dollars.
were you able to score a partial string for the 20 bucks you paid?
brilliant work, by the way. if the budget allows- i’m totally gonna make my own!

I anticipated such a question. One of the pictures in my post at the top of this thread includes the label from the LED string I used. It shows all the product’s details, manufacturer’s name, part number, length, # of LEDs, volts and amps/watts, etc…


got it! thanks again for all your work and ingenuity!


This works great! Thanks for the tutorial.

One question, can the heat warp the prints? It gets fairly hot after a while.


After lots of searching, and trying to figure out if the ones i bought would work or not. I pulled the trigger on these - http://www.ebay.com/itm/121644536234?_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT - and they worked perfectly.

Just did a little test on a blob of resin on a piece of cardboard with the LEDS just loosely coiled around it, and it cured in a matter of minutes… Looking forward to rigging up a legit tank/box for them now.


Hi everybody,

I was thinking of using an old mycrowave hoven… after removing the microwave system and installing uv leds, you already have a rotating tray Inside, and the size should be good enough.
Cheap and simple.
What you think?


Dunno, it seems overly complicated and larger than necessary (I live in a small apt so I am biased). Keep in mind the UV source (not present in most microwaves) is the most expensive part of the cure box so I would simply save the space by putting the UV source in something smaller.

Formlabs posted this project for using a nail curing lamp to post-cure parts complete with a link to the cheapest UV powered lazy Susan ever. That is to say rotating platforms aren’t that novel and shouldn’t be your basis for a container.

That said if you have the time for the conversion, the space for the final product and enough electrical knowledge to convert your microwave power supply to the correct input for your UV source it sounds like a pretty cool project.

Be sure to post some pics of it if you do go forward with it!


I sure wouldn’t use an old Microwave. Besides the fact that it’s an enclosed box with a turntable built-in, it really has no other meritorious features. If you go with a UV light box along the lines of the one I made, you don’t need a turntable. In addition, some resins like Flexible need to cure-out under water (or more correctly, in the absence of oxygen). My UV box is made from a clear plastic jar. The LEDs are on the outside, which means you can fill the inside with water and drop your Flexible prints in to cure. Or if you don’t need an “anaerobic” environment, leave it dry…

Yeah, my overall wattage isn’t all that high, so some parts need a few hours exposure to really solidify. But I just toss my prints in the jar at the end of the day, turn it on, and everything has baked out just fine in the morning. If it bothered me, I’d take the jar apart and wrap a second string of LEDs around it to double the wattage. But it hasn’t seemed necessary.

I think “simple” is better.


Yes a microwave works. Here’s mine


Thanks for the pics!


We used a box!


Awesome, thanks for sharing, I was thinking of a much larger microwave.

I tend to agree with Randy C. that simple is better in this case but rotation and timer functionality would be nice if you were attempting to crank up the power to cure prints in minutes. I still like the jar system listed in the OP but using a defunct microwave is a great example of up-cycling.


I just wanted to share a quick thanks for this. I used this as a base for my own UV paint can. Just replace the jar with an empty metal paint can from Home Depot:

I’ve used it twice now, and I’m very happy with it. Thanks for the idea :slight_smile:


Thx for the trick, i did mine with an aluminum biscuit box.
Works great!!


Randy, this looks awesome and this something I would love to build. The only question is that, how do you achieve 60 degrees temperature? Can it be done as a separate process before applying UV light or it has to be simultaneous? Thanks a lot. Mio


I’m not certain where “60º” comes from? But the LEDs dissipate a few watts of power, the interior of the jar (with the lid) gets “toasty” warm all by itself.


Many thanks for the quick reply. It is really helpful.

With kind regards.


Im thinking that I will wrap the 400nm LEDs on the outside of the container, and the foil around them, then fill the container with either water or that cleaning agent Yellow Magic 7. In this way, oxygen is less of an issue in the curing process, hopefully curing faster at least on the part exterior. Do you think that the plastic container material would make energy transfer from the LED through the liquid I choose to the part much less efficient? Thoughts? I haven’t tried this approach yet, but at night it might work better than leaving it outside and hoping that starlight and moonlight will eventually decrease part curing time. :wink: