For those printing a lot and using a lot of IPA

We have been printing (2 departments, 3 printers each) for years and ordering IPA in relatively small amounts (4 gallons at a time usually).

Well as I was getting ready to do the P.O. request I thought I’d see what we could do buying IPA in bulk quantities.

We currently pay about $35 per gallon for 98% IPA. After some searching I found 55 gallon drum container 99% @ $495. That works out to $9 per gallon. I spoke with our Safety guy and we do need a cabinet designed for flammable products to store it (we use a smaller one for our gallon jugs). We would also need a drum handling dolly and a pump.

So to safely store two 55 gallon drums (one full and one for used IPA) that cabinet is around $2000, for the handling equipment add another couple hundred.

So if you use a lot of IPA, you should recoup these costs rather quickly.

I’m sure others high cap. users already do this but I just thought I’d put out the info for those who haven’t considered it yet.

Oops, forgot the link




Thanks for shearing it with us.
Going on drum is an industrial option and required handling and cabinet as you mentioned. Alternately, what I did is getting high amount of IPA and divided it to small amounts, smaller bottles. I have a few warehouses in my office so I placed them separately. The problem is storing it all together but spreading them will not required a cabinet.

This is the reason we switched to DPM/TPM. Not risk of fire. :slight_smile:

I get mine through ULine. They sell it in 5 gal bottles.

Fortunately, we already have flame cabinets as we ship/sell tons of hazmat materials anyway. We actually store/sell 99% IPA in all sizes, but it’s ultimately less painful if we just buy it rather than stock it out.

I buy 32 oz bottles of 91% IPA at Walmart for $2.50 each, or $10 per gallon. I pre-order online and they have it ready for pickup.


Aalfaro, are there any notable trade offs when switching from IPA to DPM/TPM, like cost, results, etc?

I currently do something similar to josephwalker but through the local pharmacy.

Formlabs has by now experimented with both. You could probably contact them with questions.

DPM can damage the powder coating of the form wash(but we never experienced issues due to that). It lasts significantly longer, parts end up less rough. Price depends on your local supplier. We pay 12 euro a liter.

The primary difference when switching will be the drying time. DPM/TPM will need a water rinse and then air dry which will take longer than IPA. You’ll probably also want to cure your parts. Another significant difference is overall cost to operate. DPM and especially TPM evaporate far slower than IPA so they won’t need topped up, and they hold much more resin before saturation.


$48 per liter for DPM/TPM is going to be a non starter for most small companies and individuals.

Get a better supplier. We pay 12 € a liter in 20 liter cans. Single liter quantities go for about 20€.

Sigma are great for SMALL quantities of chemicals but at a high premium

I have seen two Companies in Europe who offer DPM - Spot A Materials (Spain) at €11.50 / litre for 20L or €25 for 1L

also Resinous Ltd (in UK) offer it at £10 per litre for 20L and £19 for 1L

Spot A materials don’t have anything on their web site about DPM/TPM and no email address anywhere to ask and Resinous doesn’t even have a web page or I can’t find it. Does anyone else know any EU suppliers that have it available to order online with credit card or paypal? 18L DPM in Croatia costs about 700 EUR which is ridiculous. Thanks.

Try VWR International

There are a few threads on here about distilling the IPA. I think this makes a lot of sense for a high volume location, the machines seem pretty reasonable. You can also buy a cheap one from Amazon for making moonshine and put it on your stove top. I have done this and it works surprisingly well. This of course adds other safety hazards to your business…

I talked to our safety guy about this when I saw the thread regarding distilling used IPA. I found an industrial distiller designed for such usage…he was not on board. His basic concern was that we would be going from the realm of storing hazardous chemicals to processing them and I gathered that was a whole different can of worms we would be opening vs simply storing then transferring to a vendor for disposal.

That makes a lot of sense - why have the extra cost and risk for a relatively low cost consumable

Professionally I wouldn’t get this through my health and safety officer! Even just thinking about it will make here faint on the spot! And as Dxxxx says, it is too cheap to even bother to distill.

…for the hobby however, I might run a cheap distiller outside as time doesn’t matter and no safety officer around(…except for a partner though).

It can be considerable for Form 3L as you will need tons of IPA for the large models.

I believe it is lower cost and the risk is company specific, but this type of process is incredibly common and there are safe and easy to maintain machines out there. IPA is barely hazardous compared to others. If you run a generator or a car I guess you are also in the business of processing chemicals, I mean OMG you are making explosions!!! So unsafe!! But hey, I am not your safety officer, and I am not running your business.