I have seen people talk about alternatives to IPA for cleaning prints such as the Monocure Resin Away and Simple Green style cleaners. Has anyone tried using these alternatives in the Form Wash? Since it just has the magnetic impeller I don’t see why this wouldn’t work but I was just wondering if anyone had any ideas?
I bought 2 L’s of Monocure Resin Away to test out a while back because of all the people talking about it.
I tried it a few time and was not happy with the process or the horrendous smell that is worse then IPA in my opinion.
The smell is crazy
We used to use mono cure resin away because it is safer than IPA. However, we stopped using it due to the horrendous smell and costs.
So we bought Di(propylene glycol) methyl ether, which is basically ResinAway, but without additive which seems to be causing the smell.
DPME does not smell at all and works really good. It is half the price of ResinAway and lasts much longer than IPA and surface finish is better.
Do you use it in a Form Wash machine or in something else? Do you have any links to where you bought it by chance?
We recently did some very thorough testing with alternative solvents, and came up with TPM (Tripropylene Glycol Methyl Ether) as our approved alternative to IPA. It has an extremely high flash point, is compatible with Form Wash, and can dissolve >3x the amount of resin compared to IPA. Depending on the quantity bought, it ranges from 1-3x as expensive as IPA up front, but it ends up being cheaper to operate than IPA in most cases because of the increased resin capacity and lack of evaporation. You’ll want to wash the TPM off with water (not down the drain) as it won’t dry at room temperature in any reasonable amount of time. You can check the Dow website for distributors.
DPM is also compatible with our resins and works well, but has a lower flash point and has some compatibility issues with the powder coating on the Form Wash.
Let me know if you have any more questions or comments. We’re continuing work in this space to improve the wash experience and feedback is always helpful.
That is great information thank you. How is the smell of the TPM, does it have a strong smell like IPA or is it a more tolerable smell?
The smell is different, but generally less pungent as TPM doesn’t evaporate much. If you’re using Form Wash, you won’t get that strong blast of vapor when the part comes out like you do with IPA. TPM and DPM are similar in this regard. Is smell your primary reason for looking for alternatives, or something else?
Smell is a large part of it for me, but honestly what led me down this investigation was a YouTube video. A maker was testing out cleaning agents (Mr. Clean, Simple Green and Mean Green) to clean off resin prints (made on cheaper printers with Elgoo resin). He seemed to get better results for less money with the cleaning agents than IPA so I wanted to see if anyone had tried it with the Form Wash since I have one of those for my Form 3 which is on the way.
This was my experience as well. I even emailed them, they gave me some line of BS along with a few suggestions that I have yet to try because I can recognize smoke and mirrors when I see them.
The product sucks.
I tried DPME, but didn’t like it. It cracked the plastic housing on my ultrasonic cleaner. Some resins, in particular durable, seem to absorb it more readily than IPA and distorted. I also sometimes left a film of resin on some, mainly flat, surfaces.
Maybe, though, it just needs to be used in a Wash rather than open buckets.
I only use it in the form wash and ultrasonic, not in the bath supplied with the printer. This goes well with even high temp resin, which is prone to crack when it sucks up too much. My ultrasonic cleaner is stainless steel so never have issues there. It works different than IPA as it doesn’t seem to dissolve the resin like IPA does but removes it from the surface. We have no trouble combining rigid resin with all the other resins in the same form wash, which is a no-go with IPA(leave white residue). We print a lot with durable resin without issues for months already.
The Tripropylene Glycol Methyl Ether is a good suggestion and I’ll order some to try next.