Button - continue print with empty cartridge


#1

Would it be possible to add a button to the Printer menu - “continue print with empty cartridge” ?

  • We know that there is enough resin in the cartridge, since we put the cartrige on a scale
  • Even if a cartridge is completely empty there is enough resin in the tank to complete a print for tiny objects

The button should be visible when the printer is heating up the tank. Once clicked the printer can still check the resin level in the tank and dispence material from the cartidge.

It’s not funny to find the “probably empty cartridge” message on the next morning when we print a low volume part.

Many Thanks
Cubo


#2

I’ve never seen that message- I have gotten the “low Resin” warning, which offers an “Ignore” button in which case the printer just keeps on printing till finished…
But then usually when we see that its because the printer has calculated how much resin we used from a cartridge- but we have poured some reclaimed resin from another cartridge in there- so we know it has enough for the job.

I am wondering if this warning comes up when the printer tries to dispense resin, but the resin sensor does not detect a change in the level- meaning- there’s no more in the cartridge tho there may be enough in the tray to finish the print.?


#3

We get also the “low resin” warning. The problem is, it doesn’t appears imediately. You have to wait some time for it. If the printer is not at your desk (labratory room with exhaust), chances are high to forget about the low cartridge and on the next morning you have a message instead of a print.

Today I’ve seen another issue, the machine is sensing the resin level in the end of the print. This was the layer 759/760 … that is not neccessary


#4

The resin sensing at the last layer has always been there AFAIK. I also think it’s necessary but never really bothered posting about this because the 10 sec delay it ridiculous when compared to the total print time.

As for the resin sensing messages, it’s good to remind Formlabs that this continues to bother people. However, it has been discussed a LOT on these forums and we never got anything out of it so don’t hold your hopes up…


#5

That last layer resin sensing thing was fixed several firmwares ago. I guess it’s back… It happens from time to time that old bugs get introduced when they fix new ones.


#6

How about a pressure sensor for the form 3 to estimate the left amount in the cartridge :wink: ?


#7

dd you not get a text message telling you the print had stopped because of low resin?


#8

In that case the print didn’t started, because I’ve forgotten to wait some minutes for the message “low resin in the cartridge”. After confirming the “low resin warning” on the next morning the tank was filled successfully and the print was completed without further messages.


#9

I find with the last couple of firmware updates the “low resin in the cartridge” comes within a couple of minutes of pressing the start button.


#10

I can confirm this, however it is still too slow… We don’t have the time to wait for messages :slight_smile:


#11

Same here. Yes it’s only a couple of minutes but it’s a repetitive, mostly useless message for anyone who is more than a beginner. And it’s increasingly annoying when printing successive small prints and trying to iterate on a design when working on an almost empty or completely empty cartridge, having to wait for a systemic message you know you can ignore.


#12

I am literally looking at my printer…calculating the risk of pressing the ignore button. Will it complete? I dont know…do I wait a week for my new cartridge to arrive and risk a deformation in the print after it resumes?? Don’t know!!! Arrhg!


#13

Today I had fun :slight_smile: Printed a part which was calculated with 1,5h --> the print took 10h :wink:
The Printer was checking every layer the resin level in the tray, fine details were distorted I’m thinking due to long pauses between the layers.

In the cardridge were 15g (measured with scale)… I can’t remember this behavior in former firmwares :frowning: Would be great to really add the “ignore resin level” button.

With this button, in the end we would print more and buy more resin since the resin will be consumed faster without delays :smile:


#14

Form Labs Engineering and Customer support - Please add this feature

It’s really annoying when you should have 0.4L of material available to print with and the machine does not let you print with material available in the tank. This create a problem with unnecessary hazardous waste being created. If I tried a material and chose not to use it anymore, I’m left with a minimum of 0.4L of uncured material I have to deal with.


#15

Just pour it into the next cartridge, when it is half empty, and keep printing…


#16

This is part of an email I received from Formlabs support on the very point you’re making:

“If you ever need to replace the tank that you are using, you can always pour the resin from one tank to another, ensuring that no resin is wasted in the process. This means that even if you stopped using a material altogether, you would only be discarding about 300mL even if you had gone through several cartridges of resin and several tanks.” Emphasis added

Nobody expects to use every last drop of resin (although I have seen jobs finish successfully on other equipment with virtually no resin remaining in the tank). But leaving 300-400 mL of expensive and hazardous waste material that cannot be used? Is there any defense to this kind of response?


#17

Hmm…

Never tried it, but how about putting something in front of the sensor? Maybe taping a metal plate to it would make the machine think, there is enough resin in the tank…


#18

You are amazing. Thank you!


#19

When the Form3 was first introduced it was possible to print until the tank was empty, indeed I had one large print that failed to finish because it ran out of resin. That was changed in a relatively short time, presumable because of complaints or the number of instances of failed tanks. The hour’s wait has come in more recently, within the last year I think, I’m not sure what the problem was that a long wait was the solution to.

But as with most thongs in life, secrecy breeds conspiracy theories.


#20

It is very frustrating that when Formlabs is given a choice between satisfying user complaints by either giving users an option (such as adding a menu button) or making a unilateral change that affects everyone, they always seem to go with the latter.