Resin Fill Level & Expedite Filling Bypass


#1

Copying a message sent to FL support to see if anyone in the community has any thoughts?

Since I received my new Form 3 on Feb 8, I have had issues with calibrating the resin level. I have tried calibrating twice, and each time, the resin fill level calibration process takes 30-60 minutes to complete. I follow the instructions by removing the tank before calibration is started. I have tried re-leveling and then recalibrating.

Please see the following video showing the visual appearance of the tank after the filling process is complete, with the wiper making the last few passes back and forth after filling:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/w8i9fPyKixxY9wvx6

My Form 3 does not run until the tank has filled to over 365 mL of resin. I calculated this figure by pouring the resin out of the tank to weigh it after the tank was completely filled (440 g), and dividing by the density of the standard Color Base resin, 1.2 g/cc. Recalibrating showed no improvement–in fact, it may now be worse.

Both tanks I own show the same issue, one used with standard Color Base and another with Rigid 4000.

Before I purchased my Form 3, I discussed with my sales exec my need to use multiple colors. So I already placed an order for 7 more liters of Color Base resin, intending to use each for a different color and to use as much resin of that color as possible before moving to the next cartridge.

However, the resin fill level is extremely problematic because the system will continuously attempt to fill even after the cartridge is exhausted, and will not allow the user to “Ignore” the fill warning until at least 30 minutes have elapsed from the start of filling. Temporarily defeating the float switch is untenable, as the system again checks the fill level after the first layer or two, and again after 100 or so layers. During these mid-print fill checks, the system will attempt to fill for > 1 hour–I am not sure how long it continues before warning because my print job failed during the attempt.

There absolutely must be a way to allow the user to use most of the resin without having a floor capacity of around 365 mL which will never be fully usable. By designing the system with no way to bypass without the inconvenience of waiting 30+ minutes before a manual override decision can be made, Formlabs is ensuring that users buying into the FL materials ecosystem will never be able to fully use several hundred mL of resin for each type of material they own, except perhaps if they agree to wait an indefinite amount of time for the filling bypass screen to display. Am I mistaken in this assertion?

I am seeking a workaround and resolution to my concerns about 1) the resin fill capacity and calibration and 2) the inability to expeditiously bypass the filling procedure for print jobs where the user judges that a sufficient amount of material is available in the tank for the job to complete correctly.


#2

In practical terms, I’d say you’re not mistaken. The difficulty using up your last bit of resin has frustrated several users, including me (and inspired a small cartoon).

As you noted it can be worked around by waiting for the override message to come up. I think if you start with a cartridge the system already knows is completely empty, it may come up nearer to the beginning of the print.

You might be interested in this thread (specific to the Form 2 but the issue is the same):


#3

Haha nice cartoon!

There are a lot of user requests that (sadly) go against the business model of Formlabs.
So they have really little chance of really being pursued by development.

We might need to wait for them to grow like HP-like large for the business to become interestingly enough for third parties to develop non-standard alternative solutions