I have been testing ApplyLabWorks resin for the last weeks. I used their Black because it’s the only version they offer that can build from 100-25 microns, according to the website info.
At $60 a liter it is much more in an acceptable price range compared to Formlabs’ resins. The question is always how well do the better priced resins work. I did test Maker Juice resin (gray) a while back and did not get ONE good part - some were usable after extensive sanding and filling. Most were failures. I don’t know if that was an old Liter of resin or if it simply doesn’t perform well. The pigment also separates rather quickly, which is bad for a part that runs for 15+ hours, especially since those resins run in open mode - no heater and no squeegee action. I also tested Madesolid resins, which back then were excellent. Unfortunately the company does not exist anymore.
ApplyLabWork’s Resin (Black) did perform very well. Very good resolution and clean surface, absolutely comparable to Formlabs resins in surface quality.
Here is some more info, in direct comparison to Formlabs Resins:
• It cleans up very easily. Parts don’t have to be in the alcohol bath longer than 5 minutes, no matter the size and detail of the part.
• It does sand very well with 220 grit sandpaper.
• It is a bit softer and more flexible, this is good and bad - being more flexible makes finished parts less brittle, however thin walled objects can deform and stay deformed when under a certain amount of pressure.
• It has got the worst odor of all the resins I have been testing and using. Not bothersome to me personally but it might be to others. It smells a bit like wet moss on old chopped down tree trunks.
• The parts come off the building platform easier due to the flexibility of the cured material.
• There is very little separation of the components when left in the vat, unused for 10 days. After that long of a still-stand mixing up the remaining resin is still recommended.
Here are some pics (parts are made with 100 microns and 50 microns).
The bottom left of the 80 shows some distortion. I don’t know where it’s coming from as of yet. Some resins I tested created tons of layer shifts - layer shifts and distortions can have numerous causes including the resin itself. I’ve been through about 2/3 of this resin and this is the only flaw I have encountered among all the parts so far, suggesting that it’s not a resin problem.
The satellite is about 2.25" tall at 50 microns.
Great detail capability.
At $60 a liter (FREE SHIPPING!) ApplyLabWork has come up with a high performing resin that surpassed my expectations.
I hope they’ll come out with a clear version soon.
Thanks Walter for sharing.
I think good resins that sport a great price tag like Apply Lab Work’s should be supported.
8+ liters - that’s a word! That would be $1200 + shipping for Formlabs’ basic resins…
compared to $480 no shipping - if that doesn’t open eyes I don’t know what does…
I’m just hoping for them to bring out a good clear resin in the near future.
SLA has existed without wipers and heaters until this point and gotten by just fine. Don’t take a couple gimmicks from one printer as a new standard or requirement. The heater is intended to benefit FL resins.
I am very well aware of that (when talking about the small so called desktop systems), even though it’s a stretch calling the heater and wiper a “gimmick” it is part of controlling and ensuring a more consistent environment, the more this environment is consistent the less likely a failure occurs - logically. It’s like having an airbag in your car - the front airbag is good but a side airbag in addition is better.
Having the wiper mix the resin regularly is of benefit, especially when pigments are introduced that tend to separate over time. A 32+ hour run can suffer from unmixed resins causing a failure - which did happen to me on a few occasions (never with the clear, but white and gray).
Therefore the wiper is quite essential for some.
I’ve been using ApplyLabWorks for the past year almost exclusively, and I can tell you with utmost certainty, it doesn’t need the wiper or heater.
It was designed to replicate the original White and Black resins, which were in turn designed to work on the Form 1/1+ which never had the wiper or heater.
I’ve been using this stuff on my Form 1+ primarily because the latest resin offerings from FormLabs are being tweaked with a focus on the Form 2, and don’t work all that great on the older models. As @cjryker06 said, SLA printing, including FormLabs had gotten by without the wiper or heater for a long time, and many other SLA/DLP printers work just fine without them.
I have used both the beige and the black, and I’ve also mixed the 2, and I can tell you that the pigment doesn’t settle as quick as you think. The vat motion alone will keep the resin flowing and “stirred” (not shaken ). I’ve ran prints a week between each other and the only thing I did was run the spatula through the resin a couple of time before the print.
For standard resins, which is where ALW resins fall, the wiper and heater are overrated.
We could get into a discussion here that would end up going nowhere, about product control, machine quality etc, as mediocrity these days has become the norm of excellence.
Fact is that I lost days and lots of material without the wiper in certain cases - NOT with the ALW resin of course - as I am “promoting” that particular resin here to be a very good one.
What is overrated are Formlabs resin prices…
But I’m glad to see you being in the same boat when it comes to using good 3rd party resins like that made by ALW.
Therefore it’s important to let people know - which is what the only purpose of this thread is.
So thanks for chiming in, in support of ALW’s resin.
For my mix I use V3 Grey (FormLabs). Don’t worry about the heater as the Form 2 produces a good bit of heat on it’s own. Open mode is easy unless you go over the 100 ml limit. Don’t really need to be there but it does slow the printing time quite a bit. I very seldom go even close to that limit.
Only need for the wiper is to scrape away miss-print pieces and if they happen to stick to the tray window the wiper snaps and can spill resin so I’m just as happy it doesn’t move as I’ve already lost one orange shell because of that.
If you look back through the posts in the last year or so, you will find quite a few threads with reviews of the ALW resin, and almost everyone that as tried it has had nothing but good things to say. yes there are some that were “not impressed”, but to the users that like it, it has pretty much become the “go-to” resin.
It sure doesn’t look cloudy because of too much printing, rather because it was badly cleaned. All these wiping marks shouldn’t be there. There’s no telling if it’s the culprit but I would certainly not use a tank that isn’t perfectly clear from wipe marks