I’m celebrating a year of resin printing today, and coincidently also in the middle of sorting out my new Elegoo Jupiter. I knew that larger build plate equals more mess and more scope for failure (more suction force, more likely chance for cascade failures, etc) but I didn’t think it would be quite as troublesome as I’ve currently found it.
When I originally set up my Mars 2 Pro a year ago it was a case of printing a few calibration tests, finding the default settings from Elegoo were actually absolutely fine, and cracking on with printing. There’s obviously a lot to learn when starting out including how to support correctly (and when not to trust pre-supported files), what to do after failures and how generally to minimise mess, but the smaller printer really was just plug in and print.
The Jupiter on the other hand has been a bit of a nightmare so far. First two attempts the calibration test wouldn’t even print. Everything stuck to the FEP. It seems that levelling and general adhesion of the build plate seems to be the problem for a lot of people finally getting their printer from the Kickstarter campaign.
So I’ll tell you what I’ve done to get (mostly) successful prints, plus some other alternatives to try if all hope seems lost.
For prints that don’t adhere to the build plate at all:
- Get your build plate level. It’s a fickle mistress. Follow the instructions in the booklet, not the sheet provided. The sheet suggests putting your hand on the build plate as you tighten the screws, but I found this caused it to de-level and top lightly to one corer or to the front, so I don’t do this as I tighten. Obviously do the screws in the order provided. Don’t over tighten the L handle as it may cause issues too. At the end of the levelling process the sheet should have equal resistance from all corners of the build plate.
- Raise your bottom exposure. For the resin I’m working with (Elegoo ABS-like grey) the recommended burn in layer exposure is 30 seconds. Fat chance with that. Raising to 40 seconds had moderate success (but at that point I still had issues with levelling so would stick to the front but not the back. 45 seconds was where I was happy that everything would always stick.
For prints that print the base layers but fall off supports:
- Get your exposure right. Use the Cones of Calibration from TableFlip Foundry to get a base exposure. There are included instructions in the .zip but generally the cones on the SUCCESS side should all print, the cones on the FAILURE side should all fail.
- Temperature plays a big part. The ideal is 25 c but I frequently print at lower temperatures at my own risk.
- Suction forces on the larger printers are a bigger deal. There are bigger prints and a bigger FEP. Prints may need a few extra large supports at the base of islands to ensure the whole thing stays on board.
For prints that split half way (this is the only one that constantly happens to me):
- Potentially temperature/exposure issues again.
- Suction from hollow prints and insufficient airflow into the hollow area
- Walls of a hollow print too thin – I stick a 2mm wall on everything but have found that this isn’t thick enough for larger prints (e.g. 20-30cm long prints)
- Over exposure (particularly on transparent resins)
- Suction again! Hollow areas without a hole to allow airflow get a rough bloom around them because of the force put on the layers getting the print off the FEP.