Tethon 3D - Ferrolite Iron Resin on Form 2


#1

Hi,

I am in front of a new project which is to print Tethon 3D Ferrolite resin parts onto Form 2.

I would like to ask if anyone has had any experience with this resin on Form 2 and could give me some advice regarding the print mode, settings, part design etc?

Thank You in advance!


#2

Has the manufacturer or supplier mentioned whether anyone’s tried it on a Formlabs printer?

Some tips I noticed from the user manual for that resin:

  • Use the longest exposure times the printer allows for pre set settings

  • 3D printers most suited for Ferrolite printing have a slide separation mechanism for layer separation with a wiper bar or resin mixer during printing

  • Heating is not recommend unless the viscosity is too high for the printer. Keep the printing temperature as close to 24*C as possible.

I’d start with a small, really simple part just to validate that you get curing and adhesion to the build platform (e.g. Something like a 15mm cube that prints directly on the base). Probably try Open Mode first.

If it looks promising and you’re keen on getting the wiper going, you can buy a Universal Cartridge and trick the printer into thinking it’s a stock resin. If you’re really brave, have some electronics skills, and want to use the wiper without the heater, you can “sabotage” the heater by removing some of the wires from the header where it connects to the motherboard. I covered pinouts in this post. It will take longer to start prints and you’ll have to tap through some warnings.

If I recall, Castable has a high exposure power, so it might be a good profile to start with - unless someone else knows of one that pushes even more power from the laser. I wonder if Ceramic settings might also be worth a shot, given that it’s likewise formulated for sintering (and I’m guessing has high filler content).

Also, if you find you need longer exposures, here’s a neat trick: Duplicate your part in Preform (several times if you want), zoom in, and align the copies to all be positioned in exactly the same spot on the build platform (down to the pixel). That will cause the laser to make multiple passes per layer.

Aside from Draft, I think the Formlabs resins tend to be less light-sensitive than typical SLA resins designed for other printers. If it turns out you need less exposure, you can try one of the other profiles.

If you have a Form 1+ around, it supports OpenFL which lets you create custom resin profiles giving you more control over the exposure settings (and independent “knobs” for the supports vs. the model itself).

Ferrolite has been mentioned on the forums a couple times in the past, might be worth reaching out to @Rovermars to see if he ever got it to work.

I’m really interested to hear how your experiments go. It would be pretty cool to be able to print parts directly off the printer that become 100% metal after sintering.


#3

Thank You for all the tips and information.

I will definitely try some of them. In our project we are looking for non-sintered, more like ceramic, parts so we won’t sinter the target parts but I am pretty sure that we will try to sinter some extra parts, just to see the results and the properties of the sintered parts.

I will keep you updated on the results of our trials and share my conclusions with You.


#4

I’m getting back with some update on my trials with Tethon Ferrolite resin.

I’ve made many attempts to print with different settings. The common thing for all of the attempts was that I’ve used a Universal Cartridge that You suggested and I have to addmit that without it it would be very hard/impossible to print anything. At the beggining I was trying to print with Cartridge configure as a Castable resin and with duplicated part in Preform, actually not duplicated but quadrupled, but part didn’t stick to the building platform. Then I’ve had a few attempts with Cartridge set as Rigid 10K and part did stick to the building platform but in the middle of the printing process it just fell off the supports.

The final and the best attempt was after consultation and some tips from resin supplier. The main thing was, that they advised me to configure Cartridge as Black resin. I left the part quadrupled in PreForm, set the Cartridge as Black resin and that was it! I finally got my first 3D printed ferrite part.

Unfortunately the magnetic protperties of the part are too low, so I had to suspend the project, but it was very nice experience with totally different approach on printing on Form 2.


#5

Doesn’t the sintering temperature also affect the magnetic properties?


#6

I did not sinter the printed part because referring to supplier’s guide, the printed part only has magnetic properties in the green unfired state. I also cured it with UV without temperature.