You Cant Buy Replacement Parts

Apparently, when your Formlabs printer starts to age, you can’t buy replacement parts. Instead, you’re forced to send it in and pay $800+ for a repair.

Board is going out on our Form1+. OK, let’s just drop in a new board. Nope! Here is what they’ll tell you

I’m sorry to say that the motherboard of the printer is not a part we’re able to
replace in the field, as it’s not a part that’s readily available and it needs
to be tested by our technicians after replacement. If you would want to bring
the printer in for repair, I’m happy to help facilitate a repair

Apparently, motherboards are not “readily available” … yeah…OK

Anyways, that’s my rant for the day

IMO the later is probably more true than the former. Although it’s probably true the mobo’s can’t be pick up at Best Buy i’m sure they could send a replacement to you if they wished. However with the precision of this printer I can understand how they need to be the ones to replace and then test the machine. If my car’s engine dies I’m not going to call the mfg and order a new one. OK bad example but you get my point.

BTW venting can be psychologically beneficial! :slight_smile: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/evolution-the-self/201404/6-virtues-and-6-vices-venting

Yeah. It’s not replacing the PCBA that’s the issue. It’s the calibration that’s required afterwards.

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Why couldn’t you just use the X/Y scale and X/Y offset under “Fine Tuning” to tune it yourself?

I am not very knowledgeable about under the hood details of the FormLab printers. But I do know a bit about technologies like the galvanometers that FormLabs uses. It’s not just a XY scaling problem. The printer cares about what path the laser takes moving from point A to point B. But Galvos are “open loop” motion controllers. They need to be calibrated across their full range of motion or they won’t produce an accurately controlled beam path when moving around. There may also be some optical calibration required for the laser power.

Exactly. This is why the galvo’s, lasers, control boards etc. can not be user replaceable. The printers must go back to Formlabs. It is a frustrating fact about owning a Formlabs printer.
On another note, I gather that all 3D Systems, Stratasys, etc printers either require an onsite tech visit that will far exceed the $800 quote you got or you would have to package up the printer and ship it off just like the Form x.