Tuning for Quality in OpenFL Material Configuration Files

I did the same thing when I first started with the inis, I was making drastic changes just like that, What I found myself doing was nitpicking every settings losing sight of what I originally just wanted to test. Then I realized you have to basically analyze a failed print and see where the point of failure was. And only adjust that until it no longer fails. and so on.

I recently came across this tip, for now I am going to stick with lighter resins, they are just easier to work with, clean up and tune in. I m taking a break from the inis for a bit, its started to get messy and time consuming. Ive made some pretty decent yellow,. red, and green inis that just need a few smaller adjustments anyway.>

Tip: A resin with a high pigment concentration will only successfully print thin layers no matter how high the exposure time so if your prints layer thickness is larger than the depth that the resin will cure you are going to see constant print failures. The trick is to get the resin pigment concentration to a point where the depth of cure is slightly thicker than the layer thickness.

-pretty sure that means to not over cure…

I think formlabs should consider creating a smaller less technical, more affordable DLP printer to introduce more people to 3d printing w/out scaring them off with a big price tag or at times heavy technicals… I have a DLP printer and to be honest, the form is a great machine but I am not an engineer and have no pro uses for it. The DLP machine is far easier to print with, more forgiving with supports and easier to clean up. For this reason, I think formlabs should think of bringing a DLP machine to market.

Thanks for the tip on printing highly pigmented resins with thinner layers.
This makes good sense after you say it. I wouldn’t be able come to that
conclusion myself with my current level of experience. You saved me a
fair amount of wasted work.
I had been thinking the opposite, that larger layer thicknesses are easier
to print, regardless of resin type. I see now I need to change that thought
process and follow through with creating inis with smaller layer heights
for highly pigmented resins.
My work requires me to focus on smaller layer heights and more detail
even though less pigmented resins might be easier to print.

Back to printing:
The last print in which I reduced [perimeter] power to 58 and reduced
[perimeter] speed to 650 was a success. There were fewer blobs of
cured resin on the surface and surface quality on the top of the ring
improved. The holes aren’t open yet, but it looks a little better overall.

I will continue reducing power from print to print.

But first I printed with earlytimesexpose = 20, as you recommended.
This was a success in the sense that there’s a little more detail on
the top. The holes are deeper without having serious voids.

So, I’ll leave earlytimesexpose = 20 and continue reducing power.
I’m sure I’m over-doing analysis here, but it’s the only way I know
how to move forward. My motto is ‘Gotta go Through It to get To It’,
which to me means you can’t learn anything by steering clear of
obstacles (gotta go through them, not around them).

So u managed to get a ring printed, try lowering only the perimeter speed a few maybe about by 8-10 at a time it seems like youre almost there. Black is gonna be a touch one but you might just get it… Also. when u make an ini that works, or at least gets you close, save it, make a copy and do edits on that one.

This way if you lose track you still have a known copy with results you can expect. And ya the inis are where the money is… Formlabs probably has to do the same thing with everyt formulation…just keep trialing and erroring.

It really is hard work. Thats why I took a break, It was making me stressed out…if 650 worked but with less detail try dropping it to 635 and so one, but just adjust it slowly, And i also noticed you were printing at .05? maybe try a .1 print and see if there is a difference… Or maybe you have to go to lower to get the holes right.

Just this perimieter part cointrols outside qualitry of the modekl>
modelxyfeedrate = 700 ; Laser speed in mm/s for the perimeter of the model. (Faster than 800 mm/s may noticably reduce surface quality.)
modellaserpowermw = 62 ; Laser power in mW for the perimeter of the model (max: 62 mW)

seems like you are able to print a model, so make sure you dont start ,messing with anything to much now you just need the perimeter detail proper… So just stick with lowering that a few points at a time, dont over do it and go from 650 to 400 or something. Youre close so now just inch it down and do it right. And yoll be like oh shi’ I just did this on my own…

I decided to focus on power for now, since that’s what seems to
deepen the holes on top of the ring and also improve surface
quality. When results stop coming in, I’ll start working the speed.
Prints are now beginning to resemble those shown in the posts on
laser flare. That is they have serious surface quality issues on one
side only. Did I mention, my laser spot test results show the classic
carrot shape. This just started showing up after I began working
with OpenFL. I’ll address this issue after I finish with this ini.
Not sure which approach I’ll take. I like Joshes approach the best,
but not sure I can print it. Maybe just drill the first one, then if prints
start coming out better, make a more accurate one. Install it, print it
again, etc.

I have both brands of laser coming, so I might eventually replace it,
However, I’ll attempt every method I can to clean up my current
laser first.


Your posts have been interesting to read. As a resin manufacturer we spend considerable time developing configuration files for all manner of printers Often those configuration files are for getting the best performance for a specific printer manufacturer to use with the resins we have developed for that manufacturer. Those resins are not available directly from us (Only the printer manufacturer)

We do also supply a range of resins that are available to anyone and will work with almost any printer. Due to the incredible spread of performance of different printers we offer our customers fine tuning additives and also instructions on how to configure to get the best printing performance with our resins.

There is a very good reason for that - with printer resins one size does not fit all. Its best to treat the resin as an essential part of the printing process. A resin designed for say an Asiga, A wanhao D7 or a Form 1 or Form 2 will all have different cure kinetics. The first three printer types allow access to the most important variables, that is UV Power - V- Exposure time.

The Form2 does not allow users access to those variables (Only Formlabs has access to that for its own resins)

Even with the Form2 limitations our resins outperform Formlabs own materials. That performance would be even further enhanced if access was allowed to the variables UV Power - V - Exposure time, but I guess Formlabs would feel uncomfortable with the competition

In actual fact its potentially easier to get our resins to perform better with a Form 1, than with a Form 2. But, as mentioned even with the limitations of the Form 2 our resins outperform Formlabs own

An example is shown in the video below:

(The mechanical properties increase further with post curing - the sample in the video has not been post cured)

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I think I figured out a fairly simple way to test resins, I haven’t tested it yet tho, but my theory is,

  • Remove build plate
  • Cut a sheet of FEP film that fits the vat
  • 3d print or mcguyver the tray into 4 sections
  • Lay said piece on top of the FEP film
  • Pour just enough resin in each section to test curing
  • Record a different laser strength for each section You can test one section place a model there and print
  • record results.

I think it could possibly be seperated using a layer of epoxy. Instead of 3d printing a part where resin might seap under. I think a few layers of epoxy built and dried on top of eachother would work better and prevent leaking. You would even be able to test multplie resins of all types with this method I think if it works…

You wouldnt want to run this sort of test for more than a few layers at a time. This may produce a baseline to a resin for testing.

If this way works you could speed up testing I think. you would be able to baseline test 4 maybe even more profiles without switching out tanks every single time. You would use this test as just a starting point…

In between tests you could remove the FEP layer test sheet with a pair of tweezers and since fep film cleans up easily that would help also… but im not sure I havent tried this method.


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