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Fulament's Resin 3D Printing Essentials
Posted by Bahij Nemeh, 16th September 2021
FULA-BITS: RESIN PRINTING ESSENTIALS
- Resin warnings and precautions
- Must-have safety items
- Nice-to-have accessories
Must-Have Safety Items
The following list is of gear and equipment you must have to resin print: no ifs, ands, or buts.
- Must be Nitrile to provide the proper protection and chemical resistance
- Recommend at least 5mil thick gloves to prevent tearing while in use
- Even if you don’t have a bad reaction to handling resin with your bare hands, it can eventually develop after long-term exposure.
Isopropyl Alcohol (IPA)
- IPA is used to clean your prints and anything that touches resin; your tools, build surface, the printer, etc.
- 99% IPA is much more effective than the lower percentages. While some people use a lower percentage IPA just fine, it depends on what the remaining percentage is made up of.
- There are many other alternatives to using IPA. Some people prefer denatured alcohol, mineral spirits, or Mean Green detergent. IPA, however, is the most widely adopted material and the most proven.
- These are used to protect your eyes in case of an accidental splash. Resin is a potential irritant, and we can’t imagine it getting in your eyes is any fun.
- Use goggles over glasses, as they provide complete 360-degree protection.
- Most people skip this step, but better safe than sorry.
- Standard household paper towels will do the job just fine. We recommend these over micro-fiber cloths as they essentially become useless the second they soak up resin.
- Always keep these within arms reach in case of an accidental spill.
- Keep your dirty paper towels in a Ziplock bag and dispose of them properly. DO NOT just throw them away in your standard garbage.
Fula-Flex: Resin Edition
- These are our very own stainless steel flex plates. We won’t print on a resin printer without them, and we no longer use any scrapers to remove parts.
- Our Fula-Flex plates help prevent damaging parts when stuck onto the build plate. Rather than scraping at the bottom of the part, we lift the metal plate off the magnetic surface and flex!
Wash / Cure Station
- Before the days of wash & cure stations, resin printing was a lot more miserable. You would have to pour IPA into a pickle container, shake it for 5-10 minutes, and then leave the part out to cure in the sun or hack together a cure station with some UV lights and a cardboard box. Needless to say, this made resin printing a lot more streamlined and enjoyable.
- Most printer manufacturers make their own wash and cure station that neatly integrates with your existing printer. If your printer brand does not, you can purchase one of the more popular stations and print some add ons that will allow you to mount your build plate for washing.
- We use silicone mats as our work surface and even put them under our printers to catch spills or leaks. Hardened resin does not stick to silicone, making for effortless cleanup.
- You can find these in all different colors and sizes, measure your work area and find the one that works for you.
Disposable Paper Funnels
- Disposable paper funnels, with a built-in filter are a must. They make pouring excess resin from the vat back into the bottle mess-free, and the filter catches any bits of hardened resin, saving you from a potentially damaged screen.
- Make sure you get the ones with the filter in them! A standard funnel will not catch hardened particles of resin and will allow them back into the bottle.
- They are typically called "Paint Strainers" and are also cheap. You can buy a pack of 100 for $10.
Soft Bristle Toothbrush
- While most washing machines do a great job removing excess resin, they tend to stay in small nooks and crannies. Having a soft bristle toothbrush to scrub those high detail areas will ensure a crisp final result.
- A soft toothbrush is critical, as your uncured resin parts are still fragile and permeable. You don’t want to leave any marks or scratches on your print. They also do a better job of filling in nooks.