Form 3 Resin Availability: Update


#31

Absolutely not being a jerk at all. Totally understand where everyone is coming from. Full response coming shortly(aiming for this week). Only reason for the delay is that we know how important this issue is and I want to give as much info as we can about what’s going on.

EDIT: Originally intended to have a response up on Tuesday, but it should be up by Friday. Thanks for your patience everyone!


#32

Thought this would be a good place to direct folks attention to this thread too: Print Quality Issue with Black Resin

It’s not clear to me that the standard resins are fully locked in w/ the Form 3 either.


#33

(aiming for this week)

Am I imagining things or yesterday did that say “aiming for later today”?


#34

You’re not wrong, but that timescale changed and I wanted to make sure it was clear that I hadn’t forgotten, I’m happy to make it clear that was an edit. :slight_smile:


#35

Thanks. Just wondered as I’d set a reminder to myself to follow up and look for the response. This is a dearly important topic to me, and other users - and I’m sure to Formlabs.


#36

Thank you all for raising these concerns and questions and sorry for the delay in providing more context on this issue. This is a materials compatibility issue between the Form 3 tank and these resins. How much we can go into specifics is somewhat sensitive.

Rigid, Elastic, and Grey Pro Resins are incompatible with the current Form 3 Resin Tanks, causing them to leak prior to reaching a desirable lifespan. What one considers a ‘desirable lifespan’ is of course something you can go back and forth on, but leaking as a failure mode is not tolerable and many of you would reach this threshold during typical printing. These factors combined led to our decision.

We became aware of this issue prior to launching the Form 3 during validation and put all our efforts into characterizing and understanding what was going on. Our engineering team got to work on adapting our tank design to mitigate this issue and early results were promising. Internally, we were under the impression we were on a path towards a viable solution when we announced an October release date, as provided in the material availability support table. The intention was to roll out these changes to our tanks, releasing print settings in tandem. While these new tanks showed some improvement, it was not a perfect fix. Through further validation and discussion, we ultimately deemed it unacceptable for release on the Form 3.

We understand that Rigid, Elastic, and Grey Pro are popular materials and important to many of your workflows. We are sincerely sorry for the disruption that this has caused and are continuously working toward a resolution. Tank changes require significant validation, and we have seen promising early results do not always sustain through rigorous print testing. As such, we are unable to commit to a timeline for when we will have a solution. We will provide updates as we progress.

The settings delivery table may have given the impression this was about getting backed up on settings validation which, has kept us busy, but is not the blocker here. I also want to assure you our lack of commitment to a resolution date should not indicate we are not committed to reaching a solution. We continue to work hard on this materials challenge.

We also think it’s important this community understands the primary failure mode is leaking tanks. We do not recommend pouring these materials into tanks or getting creative in an attempt to print with these materials if you have some on hand.


#37

@JenniferMilne thanks for the detailed explanation. Is this leaking mainly a failure point at the welded/glued interface between the film and the other layers inside the tank? Is this a solvent vs resin incompatibility? Are there other ways to seal the film to the rest of the vat (ultrasonically welding, etc.)?

Will any of us early adopters receive a credit of sorts if and when a new tank design that’s compatible with these resins are released? I print with Elastic quite a lot and the low peel forces (and elimination of a shear peel - which is really important for hysteresis in Elastic) was really important to me.


#38

Yes that is the primary interface affected, we are exploring other approaches to sealing. I can’t particularly comment on credit at this time, but can reassure you when we do have a solution we will be delighted to roll it out and will do our best to get current customers up and running as quickly as possible so we will consider ways to remove any barriers they may have.

Totally understand your desire to print in Elastic resin, it’s a unique and popular material so this news impacts many different industries and applications. This is a high priority internally and we hope to land on a solution as soon as we can (that is well validated before we roll it out!).


#39

Yeah I bought a tank explicitly to run rigid before finding out it won’t work. I guess it’ll get used eventually, but that eventually could be quite a while (I already have a spare tank)


#40

Ultrasonic welding should be possible, but costly and not very easy.
Fluoroplastics (i assume we’re talking FEP or something similar) are notoriously hard to weld ultrasonically (or, well, in any other way). Especially to another material.

It’s not impossible, just very very hard.

One way to solve this might be to make the bottom frame of the tank from high density FEP (or whatever is used for the film), weld the film to that, then mechanically couple the high density frame to the rest of the tank assembly. I’m not sure if that would affect splash-proofing, though.


#41

Thanks for clarifying @JenniferMilne. This bit of info actually makes me less concerned, because it sounds like you guys will eventually find a solution and you just need time for more testing. Thanks for being transparent with us!


#42

One thing that caught my eye in the Form3B announcement was the statement that the Form3B could print with all Formlabs materials. I’m assuming that includes the engineering materials as well.
image


#43

It’s weird, my Formlabs Solutions Specialist told me, with confidence, the 3B would only support dental materials, which conflicts with what was stated in the announcement.


#44

Just to clarify so there’s no confusion at all, the Form 3B has no limitations on what materials it can print with, including non-dental and engineering materials.

Apologies for the mixed signals! If you’d like to message me privately with the name of who you were talking to I’d be happy to make sure everyone is on the same page. :slight_smile:


#45

Does that mean that the Grey Pro material that is currently not available on the FORM 3 due to compatibility issues with the tank will print on the FORM3B? If so will the fix now be rolled out to the FORM3 or can i swap my FORM3 for a FORM3B?


#46

It does not. Same tank, same limitations (for now).
@DKirch was trying to say 3B isn’t “castrated” as someone put it in one of the threads, but works with the same palette of resins as 3.


#47

Yet more mixed signals and not clear language. The Form 3B is just a Form 3 with different firmware. The ability to print with Grey Pro and RIgid and Elastic has nothing to do with firmware, it is based on the tray. So no, Form 3B will not be able to print with Grey Pro, Rigid, or Elastic out of the gate until they solve the tank issue, which will also apply to the Form 3.

Yet another reason this whole Form 3B thing is some bullshit and an absolutely terrible marketing campaign. Why are you pretending it is a different machine when it is the same thing? Just make dental users pay more for the damn dental resin and a dental support plan. You already have the gate that requires a toll, no reason to put up another gate with another toll. Ridiculous.


#48

Because if you print medical devices
you have to use certified medical printer

The European Union considers 3D-printed implants a custom-made medical device under the old 93/42/CE Directive (MDD 93/24/CE). However, the new Medical Device Regulation MDR (EU) 2017/745 states that 3D printed implants are not considered custom made medical devices under the CE mark. It also says that these devices should still follow all the directives according to their risk classification


#49

I was under the impression that a medical device status was only linked to the resin and post exposure system as that’s what will ensure the resin is cured to the correct standard. Is that not the case?


#50

The whole path needs to be certified.
Anything the resin comes into contact with, including the tank, platform, printer internals…