Green parts softer on the Form 2 than the Form 3

I’ve noticed recently that parts coming out of my Form 2 feel softer than my Form 3. Optical path is clean.

I don’t know if the laser power on my machine is dropping because of age, or if it has always been this way and parts on the Form 3 come out more exposed.

Has anybody noticed a difference here? Apparently in order to get a new laser, I have to RMA the entire machine.

Note that parts are still succeeding and the optics test looks fine, and support has told me in the past that laser levels look ok…but parts feel softer and more warp prone than on the Form 3.

Thanks all!

You could have a bit of thin dust on the output lens of the laser diode.
This happened to one of our older Form 2.
The optical test was OK ( not super sharp but OK ) and uniform. However the laser energy was reduced by the dust.
Parts curing was not perfect and we could see a trend towards inter-layer delamination.
After cleaning the inside of the laser diode with a very tightly twisted PEC pad and a bit of optical fluid, we got things back to normal.

Oh interesting. I thought this might be the case too, I actually looked at the laser output not too long ago and it didn’t seem dirty but I’ll check again and clean it.

What optical fluid did you use? I’ve been using IPA to clean the galvos and mirrors but it always requires a bit of buffing with a dry PEC pad afterwards.

I’m thinking maybe a quick blast of compressed air at the photo diode output and then a wipe with a tightly twisted PEC pad may be suitable, but curious if you also used IPA to clean that.

@Olivier_Nicolas just curious how you cleaned the laser lens. Did you take the laser module out of the split clamp? I can’t reach inside without doing so, and formlabs support has told me not to do that because it can be difficult to align the laser back to the correct position.

I need to check with my technicians. But I think that they have 3D printed a tool fot this.
In any case, do not remove the laser pickup. Otherwise you will likely need to send the printe back to FL for service.

Yes that’s what I was told.

Let me know if you’d be able to share the STL of the tool so I can give that a shot - thanks!

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