Form Wash - no gaskets?!

I noticed it seems really full too but I think the idea behind the lines being where they are is that 1. It gets resin off of the side of the platforms so there isn’t a mess (the platform dunks pretty far into the resin tank and it would suck if the rest was clean but the sides still dripped) and 2. As IPA evaporates off of finished parts there is still enough to maintain a good level until its ready to be replaced. Just some thoughts. I’ve washed a print that took up a decent amount of the build volume (40 hr print!) and I didn’t come close to overflowing but

As far as the lack of gasket, you’re right that would be cool but it would take a loooooong time for a noticeable amount to leak out of the little cracks. Not sure how much exactly but I’d bet it’s on the scale of weeks to even notice. Also I think it’s kinda nice that there isn’t a full seal on that inner lid so the IPA can drip off of the parts back into the bucket!

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This was a concern we had as well so we did a fair bit of testing on versions with and without gaskets to measure the evaporation rate. The loss of IPA to evaporation was relatively marginal and there was little to no difference between the version with gaskets and the version without.

Archimedes principle is a bit challenging to contend with. To set the fill line, we averaged the bounding boxes of multiple prints and calculated the displacement accordingly. We’ll certainly take your feedback into account and the IPA reaching the top of the platform is normal.

The magnet that you’re seeing is designed to keep the lid in contact with the Z stage when the cover is lifted.

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Oh, i don’t mind the lack of a seal on the inner lid. That’s how it was designed to work.
I was commenting on the

It might be marginal in the sense of loss of volume (there is, after all, quite a bit of IPA in there). But it might not be marginal in the sense of having the room smell like IPA all the time :slight_smile:

Time will tell, though, so far - you’re right - there’s no noticable smell except if i stick my nose to it.

With no print in there, and the bucket filled to about half-way between the marks, the platform gets dunked about 2/3 of the way. With a hollow print, i’d imagine it’d get all the way up, but if someone were to print a non-hollow shell, or during “dunking”, before the IPA fills the void in a hollow print, i’d imagine it’d go quite a bit above the platform. At least eyeballing it, as i don’t have any real data yet.

Question - is it okay to leave the platform in there and partially submerged for prolonged times?
I’ve got two platforms, one’s in the Form2, the other one’s in the Wash. The idea being that i can simply swap them after a print. I’m wondering, though, if there’s any long-term effects from the IPA on the platform plastic (leeching the plasticizer, for example).

For reference, the lower fill line will submerge an empty platform by about 2mm and the max fill line will reach about 2/3 up the platform as you’re seeing. Some geometries may displace IPA at the maximum fill line but that’s at the upper limits of part bounding boxes.

Submerging the platform shouldn’t case issue and won’t leach byproducts into the IPA. Some older platforms had small openings that would allow IPA to enter them though we took steps to correct this a while back. If your platforms are older, it might be worth checking to ensure that IPA isn’t entering the platform.

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Be careful about accepting IPA leakage. If you can smell it, it’s doing you harm.

I just finished a job with 260 prints over 2 months, and I keep the Form2 and wash station within 4 feet of my desk.

I have developed a fissure in my left nostril that hurts like hell. My nose is so dry from the IPA fumes from just the standard curing station.

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Now that’s interesting / worrying.

When I was doing a LOT of printing a few months back, I got a long-lasting fissure in each nostril - and yes, they do hurt like hell.

I was then out of the country for a while and wasn’t able to do any printing and the fissures disappeared.

Hopefully it’s coincidence, but has anyone else experienced this?

I was surprised too. I’ve evaporated like 2-3 cups of liquid over like 3-4 weeks with no usage. I might be modifying my Wash lid to make it leak proof… I recommend some ventilation around this unit or in the room, it has a slow leak and when the lid opens it’s a bit much.

Can confirm.
2 weeks away on a trip, came back to level 1 finger lower (from a bit above the half way between hi and lo marks, to about 5mm below the lo mark) with no one using it.

Dear Formlabs, please consider redesigning this with a gasket around the outer edge. Labyrinth seal is fine, just add another gasket around the outer edge.

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Interesting, as I was pretty excited about the Wash, but I don’t want my room smelling like IPA

For what it’s worth, i can’t smell it when not in use, unless i shove my nose into the hinge or the front.

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Anyone care to guess as to which is the better seal? Basket up or basket down?

Also, if anyone has suggestions on adding a seal around the lid, please share. It seems like a fairly simple thing to do.

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mine dropped about 10 0z I. two weeks during travel for work some sort of gasket would be nice once I get some time I’m going to look into it.

Damn that’s definitely quite a lot !

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I don’t care what FormLabs say, but the Wash needs a gasket as it DOES evaporate. One that can be retrospectively fitted.

I’ve taken to covering it with food wrap to see if it makes a difference when it’s not in use. This is annoying, but it SEEMS to be making a difference.

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I prefer the wash station that comes with the Form2- because its tanks are gasketed… but even then I keep the wash station in a shop environment- not in my office.

I keep the Form 2 IN my office- but I rigged it up inside a steelcase cabinet with an activated carbon filter and external fan keeping a constant airflow around the Form and stored resin tanks and cartridges so that any resin fumes are cleaned out of the air.

AND FYI- being able to SMELL it is not the criterion for health hazard.
lots of chemicals that can cause irritation or harm have no discernible odor…

Jeez, sorry to hear that! Will it get better? Were IPA vapors the incontrovertible cause?

I ask because I, too, spend a lot of time in the same room as my Form Wash and rinse gear. I had some sinusitis-like symptoms several months ago, they went away, then came back a couple times at maybe month long intervals. Never figured out what caused it. I considered IPA Vapors but was skeptical as I didn’t notice a direct correlation between when I printed/rinsed and when the symptoms presented (although I wasn’t anywhere near scientific about it).

I picked up a 3M respirator with organic vapor cartridges (6001 black or 6003 yellow) and try to use it when I’m working right overtop of the rinse station.

BTW here’s what I said in the other thread (aside from the gasket complaint, I like the Form Wash):

As far as the loss being minimal, I have to respond with a resounding no. This is a horrible design flaw and needs to be addressed in future versions of the product. And likely some kind of rebate/refund offered to anyone who purchased the original version.

It’s been hot here in LA and in the last couple weeks I have lost OVER A GALLON of 99% IPA due to this thing having no proper seal. And in the last couple months I’ve lost around 2-3 gallons. No leaks, just evaporation in a heat wave in a shop with no AC.

This is ridiculous, you should have known better when designing the product.

And yes, my shop is also full of dizzying IPA fumes. Hope OSHA does not swing by.

This is basically a standing container of 2.27 gallons of IPA, which has a flash (evaporation) point of 53°F. Many workshops (especially during summer heat waves) can rise to well over twice that.

INHALATION EXPOSURE LIMITS
The OSHA health standards for exposure to air contaminants require that an employee’s exposure to isopropyl alcohol not exceed an 8-h TWA of 400 ppm in the working atmosphere in any 8-h shift of a 40-h workweek (OSHA, 1982); a ceiling of 800 ppm was determined during a sampling time of 15 min (NIOSH, 1976). An estimated 141,000 employees may be exposed occupationally to isopropyl alcohol in the United States (NIOSH, 1976).

The American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists established the value of 400 ppm as the TLV for isopropyl alcohol; as described above, this is the TLV currently recommended in the United States (American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists, 1980, 1983). The permissible concentration of isopropyl alcohol was established by the Japan Association of Industrial Health in 1966 at 400 ppm (Japan Association of Industrial Health, 1971). In the U.S.S.R., the maximal permissible concentration of isopropyl alcohol in a single dose or as a daily average is 0.6 mg/m3(U.S.S.R. Ministry of Public Health Individual Reports, 1971).

Normally the area where my Form Wash is stored is not heavily ventilated, but I’ve had to increase ventilation to reduce IPA exposure risks. Sadly this has drastically increased the rate at which the IPA is evaporating.

Again, I’m dumbfounded that a company with so many amazing engineers and material scientists could overlook something so basic as proper sealing on a 2+ gallon container of volatile IPA. It seems almost impossible to imagine, yet here we are!

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Interesting on the OSHA limits. You don’t happen to have a way of measuring ppm proximate to the Form Wash do you?

I addressed the issue myself by tightly covering the opening with saran wrap when not in use and placing a weight (e.g. full resin cartridge) on the lid to keep it down. Posted a picture on one of these threads somewhere but forget now which one. Haven’t made any measurements but I do notice a subjective reduction in vapor odor and, I think, evaporation rate.

I absolutely love our Form Wash. Prior to the Form Wash we, of course, manually cleaned…what a nightmare that was ! We went through waaaaay more IPA manually cleaning than with the Form Wash. We had a safety type garbage can that we filled with IPA soaked paper towels, a cardboard sheet screwed to our workbench that quickly got covered with resin polluted IPA. I used tooth brushes, test tube brushes, scuff pads and other assorted “implements of destruction” when cleaning prints. All this and our parts came nowhere near as clean and sticky free as when using the Form Wash.

I ruined clothes and shoes when manually cleaning and wore a shop apron and gloves while cleaning. The Form Wash is a god send any complaints I might have pale in comparison when the alternative manual cleaning method is considered.

Long live the Form Wash, great job and excellent product Form Labs…People will complain no matter what, that’s what people do !