Got the Printer today, and some questions


i m new in SLA printing, but not in FDM, so i have some new things here for me…
Today i made a small test print…

  • The heating process… took form 15° to 31° nearly an complete hour.
    Is this normal? FDM needs 5 Minutes… or was this because of the frist time?

  • Form 2 is connected with Wifi, so i can upload the printfile… but why can i start it form my pc, like i do with octorprint and the ultimaker? is there a tool or plugin?

  • Isopropanol… with % can i use, it 99% to much?

  • and why is it not possible to print directly form the building plate? i got everytime here in preform and error and must use a raft and support


  1. 15 to 31 in an hour sounds about right. Remember it is heating the tank and all the resin it contains.
    You can do things to get it to start warming and get a jump on the process.
  2. You are correct. No way to fix this.
  3. I use 99% all the time. I buy by the 4 gallon box.
  4. You can print from the platform. It just has several restrictions, not for the beginner.

Congrats…you will like it very much.

  1. My printer is on the main level of the house, so it warms pretty quick, like 5 minutes, if I had it in the basement it would take much longer.

  2. It is what it is, loads it up and off it goes, I wish it had a SD card or memory to store repetitive jobs, I have no problem send the job from preform to the printer or sending it from Fusion 360 to preform and to the printer. Are you worried about problems with print failing and PC going down?

  3. IPA, I buy it by the gallon you won’t use it up as fast as you think, get mine from grangers. Use the 99%

  4. You want to build on the plate to …save resin? or not deal with the raft and support material? I can tell you removal from the plate is simple, I don’t like the loss of the raft material, but suspect its not significant.

  5. Enjoy your printer…you can do some great stuff with it.

If your print would work better printed vertically without supports then printing to the platform is fine, just note that there will be a line at around 5mm because it has a higher exposure for the first 5mm to improve adhesion to the build platform, usually that’s not a problem because it only affects the supports.

Thank you for your help,

@ Phantom48 but in the main level, how is it about health and safety?

i m not sure about to wear a breathing protection cause of the vapours…

again… i want to print like the blue part, not like the white one that…

but i cant… printing is blocked in this mode…

only if i change to this, its working


and 2 new questions

the build platt form, when i use the removel tool i make scratches on it,

it this ok? or do i something wrong?

how long after washing in isopropanol, must a print dry, that the resin is fully hard ?

i know i can speed this up with uv light and the form station, but i mean without that help?

Scratches are fine; a long time back Formlabs even thought about sending the platforms pre-roughened in order to improve adhesion of your parts.

If you’re worried about keeping the platform smooth you could buy a Removal Buddy.

how long after washing in isopropanol, must a print dry, that the resin is fully hard ?
i know i can speed this up with uv light and the form station, but i mean without that help?

You should let the part dry at least 30 minutes. I let mine dry for a couple hours before curing. This ensures all the alcohol has evaporated and any swelling due to alcohol absorbed by the part during the bath has had time to subside.

You don’t want to UV cure until it’s completely dry.

As for breathing protection, it really depends how ventilated your space is. I use a 3M half-mask respirator myself, like the one pictured in these links:

3M Respirator ( with 6001 black or 6003 yellow ( organic vapor filter cartridges (for isopropyl alcohol fumes, unless workspace is well ventilated)

ps. Some more introductory tips are here - I made that article for the Form 1+ but some of it may answer questions related to the Form 2 as well.

The time it takes to heat the tank depends on the room temperature as others have noted.

I have built directly on the build plate. It shouldn’t be blocked but you’ll get warnings and your part will be red due to the lack of supports. If you build directly on the plate there will be a few accuracy issues because of the first few layers compressing.

I saw a post that said they wanted to print repetitive prints from the machine. You can do this already!

To reduce scratches twist the removal tool. Jamming it under will scratch more. All you need to do is break the relatively weak connection to the platform. You can clean the surface up with scotchbrite if it gets really messy.

IPA isn’t a mean product to use at all. As long as you’re not in a a non-ventilated basement or a very very small room, you’ll be fine. Worse that can happen is headaches and dizziness but you’d have to inhale fumes directly on top of an IPA bath for a certain amount of time for that. The purest the IPA, the better your parts will get cleaned.

PreForm will warn you that parts are directly on the build platform but you can override this warning and still print the part as-is. Keep in mind that the surface area in contact with the Build Platform is critical and should be at least 100mm2 (as per Formlabs’ advice), and you should always use the layer slider to see how you part will print in order to avoid islands and unsupported areas. What I do when printing complex parts directly on the BP is that I orient the part flat (as I want to print it), generate the supports and then remove all supports except the ones on the face that will be places on the BP… that was I still get the minima, cups and unsupported areas. I then remove the supports when I’m confident the part will print correctly… As said by @StevePeters this method of printing, while supported by Formlabs, isn’t for the beginner.

As for printing remotely, since the printer doesn’t know if the cartridge vent is open or even of the build platform is mounted, Formlabs made the choice of forcing you to be in front of the machine before printing, thus reducing the chances of failures (printing without the build platform would basically ruin most of the resin that is in the tank). This points has been addressed several times in this forum and Formlabs keeps to its decision.

Another thing to take into consideration especially since you’re coming from an FDM printer : Because you have mastered your FDM printer doesn’t mean you know how to 3D print, it just means you know how to FDM print. SLA is a totally different beast just like SLS or DMLS are too. Take care and read Formlabs’ guides carefully and don’t hesitate to ask questions here (the community is very helpfull and Formlabs staff is always here).

@rkagerer :

You don’t want to UV cure until it’s completely dry.

Have you read that from Formlabs ? I don’t remember having ever seen this advice. I personally just use pressured air for a few seconds per parts to get rid of the IPA on the surface of the part, but waiting 5 minutes will do the same thing. I don’t feel the need to wait a couple of hours especially since as per the TDS of the resin the absorption rate is negligible for IPA (<1% after 24 hours), and in the port-curing white paper there is no mention of a waiting time betwen washing and curing.

Do you have a source handy for that? I’m not skeptical, I just want to add that helpful number to my guide. (Happen to know if it’s the same for the F1+?)

Doesn’t Preform do that automatically for you now with Minima Detection? (I checked and it does seem to work with both supported and direct-on-base prints)

The official line from Formlabs is at least 30 minutes to allow IPA to “fully evaporate”. I wait longer because I read somewhere that the parts swell slightly, and I don’t want my part to be changing dimensions while it cures. Maybe that’s needlesly paranoid. You raise a good point about the <1% thing. The Form Cure heats parts which I imagine further speeds evaporation of any lingering trace amounts of IPA.

I’ve done the pressurized air thing too, when I’m in a hurry.

(Edit: I think my “completely dry” bias may also have been influenced by recommendations of not putting alcohol in a UV oven (presumably due to sparking from pre-LED lamps[?] although I’m skeptical the small amounts left after 30 minutes of air drying would pose any danger).

My personal feeling regarding the 30mins wait time before curing is that it’s a liability thing. At 60°C the IPA evaporates to fast that I don’t feel like it should make any difference for the final part. I get your reasoning too though, and 30 mins seems a reasonable amount of time to wait to be “sure”, a couple of hours for me would be unacceptable though. Thanks for finding the source of the info, I looked into the Curing white paper and didn’t find anything.

Regarding the surface area I have looked on the support site and the white paper I have downloaded but didn’t find anything. I’m sure I have read this somewhere though… there is a "printing without supports paragraph in this article but it only says that adherence is a case-to-case basis, maybe they modified the article or I read it somewhere else. Still, printing a 400ml part with 100mm2 of contact with the BP is obviously not going to work so I don’t think you should include this in your guide :wink:

We there is little smell at all, there is some noise as you know, but it lets me know its working, and I don’t have to head to the shop to find out. Its warm, so it doesn’t take long to heat, close to the computer I use to model with. Its just the noise…and I can deal with that. No smell, even the IPA has minimal smell.

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