Love my Formlabs printer.
I also love keeping the parts clean. So after each print, I’ll remove the print from the build platform and clean the surfaces with 90% IPA. Each time. Nice and clean!
I’ve experienced on my 1st build platform that the injection molded plastic is now “swelling” on the side and a visible gap has appeared. Undoubtedly, and I’ve seen this in other posts, it’s hollow under the aluminum. I now have 3 new build platforms but I have not gone as far as dedicating a build platform to match each resin tank, but maybe I’ll have to go that way soon.
My bigger concern is having some IPA “leak” into the hollow cavity behind the aluminum, and then during a print, leak back out into the resin tank. IPA and Resin don’t like each other.
Has anyone else seen swelling and gaps on their build platforms?
Though it’s not a solution or an answer to your question, I can give you an alternative option: I use one build platform for all my differen resins and all I do is wipe some kitchenroll over the build platform and wipe all sides of the build platform twice with some new kitchen roll. A quick swipe in the overhanging lib of the build platform and it’s good to go. Haven’t had any problems with it contaminating other resins and I’ve been doing it for nearly a year now.
So, perhaps just lose the ipa and clean it up without. I don’t have any cavities in my build platform by doing this.
Hey @Tim_Piumarta - love my Form1+ too … had some trials and tribulations, replaced a peel motor after only just 3 months (15 minute easy job), but the quality for the price of the printer is, as far as I’m concerned, unbeatable. Sure, there’s a learning curve, and you have to be willing to do some maintenance (just think of what people had to do to cars 100 years ago, then you’ll apprecite how little the maintenance of the Form1+ really is !), but the quality it spits out is great.
Anyway, to your problem: I suspect you have a faulty build platform. I have 4, and have used them all in several different resins; after EVERY build I clean down with IPA 99.9%, including the sides and into the crevice between the side and the top of the build platform. Never had any swelling or leaking. Since I’ve taken one apart (see this post - you don’t have to read everything, just scan through the pics), you can see what it looks like without touching yours - there is a seal, and, so long as this is intact, there should be no leakage; the plastic doesn’t seem to have any negative reaction to IPA… I’ve done about 250-300 prints in just over 3 months, and they’re all 4 fine - not TOTALLY clean, but definitely usable. The only thing I’ve done recently is to limit 2 to only clear, and the other 2 to all resins except clear after reading some advice from @BrentONeill
Any chance of you uploading a couple of high res pics?
Seagull, I’ll work on posting some photos of the inside of my build platform.
How else might the goo get into the hollow cavity, maybe through the clamp holes? It’s possible.
I noted that my black gasket was intact and looking in good condition, however the surface of the aluminum in the center, where the gasket should have protected it from contamination, was indeed coated with a goo. Felt the same sticky-ness as resin left on other surfaces.
Seagull, After taking apart my other build platform, I can see the residue must be coming in from the clamp holes. top surface of this platform aluminum is clear and clean inside the gasket, but the top cavities of the platform do indeed have some residue. I read and read your posts on the 9 cubes, then the mods to the bases, no cubes. I’ll try that. I note that my aluminum surface on platform 2 “Wavy” is wacky. Not convex, but from the “hinge” side to the opposite side, it goes convex, then back to neutral axis, then back convex and and out.
I have no complaints about Formlabs. Growing pains. Don’t misunderstand me. Not complaining.
Wiping most of the excess resin from the build plate shouldn’t take any alcohol at all. If I’m not changing resin types I don’t worry much about super cleaning the sides.
For the metal surface I just put a little alcohol on it and wipe it off with a cheap microfiber towel. Alcohol takes some time to degrade the materials in the platform so keep it quick and always dry when you finish.