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Build Plates - Are they all the same?

Discussion in 'Mods and Upgrades' started by Cbrown, Mar 27, 2016.

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What is your favorite build plate system?

  1. Fleks3d

    37.5%
  2. Proto-Pasta

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  3. BuildTak

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  4. Printinz Zebra

    12.5%
  5. Other

    50.0%
  1. Cbrown

    Cbrown Member

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    BuildTak / Fleks3d / Proto-Pasta Product Review



    BuildTak

    Price: $4.00 to $21.00 depending on size and quality

    Specs:

    4.5″ x 4.5″ (114*114), 6.5″ x 6.5″ (165*165), 6.5″ Diameter (165Dia), 5.83″ x 7.95″ (202*148), 8″ x 8″ (203*203), 8″ Diameter (203DIA), 6.25″ x 9.25″ (159*235), 6.5″ x 10″ (165*254), 6.5″ x 11.5″ (165*292), 8″ x 10″ (203*254), 9″ x 10″ (228*254), 10″ x 10″ (254*254), 12″ x 12″ (304*304), 12″ Diameter (304Dia), 16″ x 16″ (406*406)

    http://www.buildtak.com/



    Fleks3d

    Price: $20.00 to $73.00 depending on size and Simple or System Kit

    Specs:

    M3D, 4.5″ x 4.5″, 6″ x 6.″, 8″ x 8″, Makerbot Rep 2, 6″ x 9″, 10″ x 10″, 12″ x 12″, 8″ Diameter, 15″ x 15″, Dreammaker Overload

    http://www.fleks3d.com/

    Removal of Print link here:





    Proto-Pasta

    Price: $33.00

    Specs: *Cut upon order*

    https://www.proto-pasta.com/

    Removal of Print link here:



    I would like to start by saying even though these 3 products help your print adhere to the bed of your printer I would have to put BuildTak in its own category based off the thickness and use of the product. A characteristic that all 3 products have is that you can use the same build plate for ABS, PLA, and composites without a problem.

    BuildTak is a thin sheet with adhesive on one side to allow it to stick to your bed. BuildTak is also very easily be cut with scissors or an Exacto Knife. BuildTak works very well but can cause an issue if you calibrate you printer to close to the bed. If you do you will have a VERY hard time getting your print off the bed. Unlike the other products BuildTak does not last as long and cannot be removed and reapplied like Proto-Pasta and Fleks3d’s products meaning the money you save on BuildTak you spend resupplying your stock which is also why they sell in packets. No it’s not like Stratasys build plates that are one and done but if you do daily prints you will have to replace every couple weeks. A great feature to this system is it allows you to use heat which is important for ABS prints.

    Proto-Pasta’s newly released build plate has many similarities to Fleks3d, both are a thin plastic-like sheets that that are directly applied to your build plate which can be fastened on with binder clips and allow the user to pop the print off with a single bend of the plate but they start to differ from there. Proto-Pasta’s build plate allows you to print with heat applied on your bed, for example if you are using a stock XYZPrinting Da Vinci you cannot turn the heated bed off, Proto-Pasta’s plate will not warp due to the heat like Fleks3d will. Another difference I have noticed is that with Proto-Pasta’s plate they ask that you still use your favorite adhesion method, whether tape, glue stick, or Kapton tape where Fleks3d doesn’t require any extra adhesion. As seen on Proto-Pasta’s site they actually applied BuildTak to their build plate and were able to pop the print off their bed with little effort. Which does make a good combination!

    Fleks3d is a new product that just successfully finished and filled all orders form their Kickstarter Campaign. Fleks3d is a great product that comes in many different pre-cut sizes to fit most common FDM printers on the market. Fleks3d offers two prices on their website for a product with a frame, System, or one that comes without a frame, Simple. A unique feature about Fleks3d is that you can print ABS with very little heat. I actually printed ABS with 15c on my print bed. This is good because Fleks3d recommends you use heat below 60c on the bed so you do not warp the build plate. I actually have a simple and laser cut an acrylic frame to fit my Robo3d perfectly. Another great feature is that you can sand you Fleks3d bed after many uses with high grit paper to give it new life and take out any scratches or burns left by your nozzle. An issue I found with all three products is if your print fails on the first few layers it is very hard to remove from the printer!



    After reviewing all three products over the past couple months I have two different recommendations for anyone interesting in buying a build plate.

    -First, I recommend Fleks3d to anyone that can just their heat on their bed and want to print with many different composites along with ABS and PLA.

    -Second, I recommend a combination of Proto-Pasta’s build plate and BuildTak to anyone that cannot adjust their build plate heat. BuildTak Test.jpg BuildTak LR.jpg BuildTak Test.jpg BuildTak LR.jpg BuildTak Test.jpg BuildTak LR.jpg
     
    #1 Cbrown, Mar 27, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2016
  2. Cbrown

    Cbrown Member

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    *** I stated above that the temperature used was 15c. This was the temperature typed into the slicer. This doesn't account for ambient heat or heat radiating off the hotend. The print was preformed on a Makerbot 2x which is am enclosed printer which traps in some heat. Sorry if this causes misinformed or mislead anyone. ***

    If you have any questions or request further information I will be happy to explain further or assist.
     
  3. Geof

    Geof Volunteer Moderator
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    I use hair spray and glass :) no build plate on the robo. Then non heated ditto uses a gecko plate
     
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  4. Cbrown

    Cbrown Member

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    I have never used hair spray on any of my printers. I am just nervous about it for some reason.
     
  5. Geof

    Geof Volunteer Moderator
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    What is your concern ? Overspray? Hair spray works very well for me :)
     
  6. Cbrown

    Cbrown Member

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    Over spray and getting it on the electronics
     
  7. Geof

    Geof Volunteer Moderator
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    I pm my machines on Friday of each week. So they get cleaned up from a good over spray, dust etc, electronics blown off, oiled and greased etc. overspray does happen even though I use a piece of paper as a sheild but I have yet to have it hurt anything electronically. :) you should give it a try you might like it over a build plate.
     
  8. mark tomlinson

    mark tomlinson ༼ つ ◕_ ◕ ༽つ
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    The electronics are underneath so that would be some mad spray :)

    If you recoat the bed with the nozzle raised you are fine. Hairspray has long been used as a staple for this (so have glue sticks and painters tape) but the build plates also do the job if you want to go that route. Hairspray on bare glass is less forgiving for Z offset / initial layer issues so getting that dialed in first is key. The others are easier to get adhesion going even if the Z is mistuned.

    Just to be clear that the hairspray is safe enough :)
     
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  9. Cbrown

    Cbrown Member

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    Yeah that the good thing about the Robo, everything is pretty well concealed. Ill have to give it a try.
     
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  10. Thor

    Thor Member

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    So I use hairspray on a removable glass plate (buy one 12x10 @ Lowes and have them make it 10x10), and hold that to the heated bed with binder clips (that way I have 2 plates and can spray them when they're off the printer). I prefer Vidal Sassoon because Elnett holds *too* well (sometimes you have to dunk it in hot water and let the water dissolve the hairspray).
    http://www.atl-3d.com/pla-bed-adhesion/
     
  11. GAmbrosio

    GAmbrosio Active Member

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    Hairspray is the recommended adhesion method by ROBO. I'm sure if they stirred us wrong they would be on the hook to replace our beds. It can be a pain to remove model sometimes, but I find if I whack it pretty hard, it comes off, especially after it has cooled off. I typically use 3 coats of AquaNet Extra Super Hold. Makes it easy. Hairspray comes off easily with glass cleaner. It can be revitalized with water, it gets tacky like the ABS slurry thing.
     
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  12. KTMDirtFace

    KTMDirtFace Well-Known Member

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    Glue and Hairspray work fine, I just hate cleaning my bed.
     
  13. mark tomlinson

    mark tomlinson ༼ つ ◕_ ◕ ༽つ
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    You will find that there are best approaches for each filament. Otherwise you will end up with models that are too aggressively stuck to the bed and that will lead to chipped or cracked or broken beds.

    My 2 cents:

    In all honesty if you just get the first layer nailed then getting anything to stick not super complicated (and you don't even need hairspray for most materials). If you get lazy with the leveling you will need more effort.
     
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  14. GAmbrosio

    GAmbrosio Active Member

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    I clean after every 1-2 prints. I find that is likely excessive, but as you all know this technology albeit has elements of know-how, skills, many are also dependent on one's midichlorian count and how close you are with the Force. Since my Jedi powers are weak, figure a little effort will possibly save me a lot of headache and wasted materials.

    It really is easy, though it is nonetheless a chore. I bought the paper rolls of shop towels, spray the bed with ammonia glass cleaner and wipe with a dry towel. Spray it with hairspray-done.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  15. GAmbrosio

    GAmbrosio Active Member

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    Unless you start getting touchy feely, and start mucky with the first two layers...:)
     
  16. Thor

    Thor Member

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    I'm still running the original drawer slides (yes, I know. I'm trying to get my Cobblebot working before taking the Robo3D down), so I was nervous about anything that shocks the bed.

    So I cut a bit into my case and use a replacement piece of glass as my bed, so I can remove it before clearing or cleaning.
    http://www.atl-3d.com/robo3d-ks-glass-plate/
     
  17. digitalsolo

    digitalsolo New Member

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    I have used hairspray/glue stick with pretty good results, probably 90% success rate with PLA and 95% with ABS (60/90* bed temps respectively). I also have a Fleks3d and honestly, at first I was much less than impressed. It took quite a bit of fiddling with z height, but once I got it dialed it rocks. 99% success rate across various filaments. I do occasionally get a slight lift on an edge of a large flat object, but even then it's not been enough to really appreciably impact the print.

    I hold my frame for the Fleks on with mini binder clips so that I can swap quickly if I like. It can be a bit of a pain to clean skirts and things off of, but I can usually get an edge of the skirt with an X-acto and pull it off in one string. Beyond that it's a nice product and I'm happy with my purchase.
     

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