Thoughts on unmonitored prints?

Hey everyone,

I’m very new to printing on my formlab 2, only four prints in. I’ve never printed anything without watching it the entire time, I’ve always been worried something will fail, cause resin to overflow, and destroy the optics below. How likely is this? Any tips on printing unsupervised? Or should I always watch my prints as they go?

I usually run my prints right before I leave work and get them out the next morning or on Monday if I started the print on a Friday., Sometimes you will have a print fail and stick to the bottom of the tank but it is as simple as scraping the cured resin out of the bottom of the tank and filtering the resin to get anything you may have missed. I do make sure I am there until the print starts. I do not see a problem running it unsupervised. If you want to you could setup a webcam so you can check in on it to ease your mind.

Chris

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I have about 200 prints on my Form2, I have never “supervised” a print. My printer is in a different part of the building where I work. I’ll check on it a couple of times a day … often my prints run at night or over the weekend. I suppose I could setup a camera.

Sure, there is a small chance something could go wrong. There are several catastrophic stories on these forums. From what I have seen FL support is excellent at getting you back up and running after a catastrophe.

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When a print does fail or fall off what happens? I’ve had two fail but it would stop the print and I grab them out (with tools), Does it pause the heating/ do prints get disrupted?

Also, if printing multiple prints in one go, what do you do if one fails? Pull it out and let it continue the print? Will cured resin get caught in the tank then where the print once was suppose to be?

Normal for people to be nervous with their first prints but the confidence will grow. Not to say you won’t have failures but you will learn from your mistakes.

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What has happened to me in the past is if an object falls, it often will get in the way of the wiper. The wiper will attempt a pass, if it cannot the print will then stop with an error (motor jammed or an obstruction error, I cant remember the exact wording). You can then open the printer and remove the obstruction, however IIRC you cannot resume printing once this happens.

Of course every case is different…There have been stories of a print falling, and the wiper momentarily getting stuck on a fallen part…then the force slingshots the wiper across sending a wave of resin out of the tank. Rare, but it happens.

EDIT: I have had this happen where I have multiple parts and one fails for whatever reason leaving a very thin layer of cured resin on the PDMS of the tank which you can later scrape off. Also keep in mind that you can pause a print at any time giving you the opportunity to remove any debris that may be in the tank.

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We like to push the limits of supports and worst case the part falls off and then the motor jams coming down. Printer throws up an error asking to clear the obstruction, you clean everything up and start over again.

We don’t watch anything, but we did hook up a UPS to the printer after we had a random overnight failure that seemed to be power related.

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Ive done some long prints and like others I wouldn’t be able to sit and watch it or even stay home that long. If it fails it fails the likely hood of a catastrophic fail vs one that pauses the printer is unlikely. I would be more afraid of an FDM failed print (catching fire etc) than some resin being slung around and requiring a a clean up.

J

Ah, I think I’ve had the cured resin to PDMS layer problem for that very reason but I couldn’t figure it out until now. I always assumed if you had muli parts and one failed you would need to stop the whole print and re-do it.

I’ve seen some of the horror stories but always assumed that was the norm. Good to know print failure won’t result in total destruction!

I start it and forget about it! I print a lot overnight. I have had failures that only resulted in me having to clean the tank. Nothing got outside the tank. The only failure I had that caused damage was a cracked tank on the Form 1+. That didn’t happen during printing. It just cracked sometime and got resin all over everything inside and I could not make it run again.

I’ve had two of these in the past week, one was for an unknown reason and the other was a part that detached from its supports and did truly jam the motor. In both cases I was able to resume after clearing the obstruction.

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