Lab notes: 3D printing materials


  • don't print above 245° - the PTFE in the hot end PID may start to break down.


Recommended settings

  • Whatever ReplicatorG suggests
  • Enclose build volume (saran wrap?)

someone suggested heat bed to 135!?


  • red PLA on blue tape, 220° 80+160mm/s

blue tape stuck really well. also try bare kapton at 70°-80°. if it sticks too well and the print won't release, heat the bed to 80° to soften it up.

reports that PLA won't stick well to glass on humid days.


  • 230 extruder, 115 base. 30mm/s. no blue tape.

can dissolve in limonene and possibly acetone for use as a support material.


Recommended settings

  • 220° at 60mm/s

keep it slow

At the recommended 230-250° the material grew very stringy, contained small bubbles, and would audibly pop small clouds of (presumably) cyanide gas from the extruder tip. Had lots of trouble sticking to the build plate (Kapton tape) or to blue painter's tape. Some say the pops are steam from water absorbed by the nylon.

Sticks very well to paper.

Not only leveling but calibrating the height of the print bed is very important. If it's too low, the first layer is squished into a thin surface, and the second layer doesn't adhere to it well, so the first layer forms a 'skin' that peels off. I' noticed that with every surface I've tried so far (wood, Nylon, Garolite LE). On the Garolite, I've been printing the first layer and tweaking the platform's height until the first layer is evenly white-ish - if it's clear, the first layer is too 'squished' and the prints tend to split at the second layer.!searchin/trinitylabs-talk/taulman$20nylon/trinitylabs-talk/oDITMohdypM/ic6WSK2Fm6oJ

dry it out.

from comments Thanks, I've made some progress to reduce ooze by lowering the temp to about 220 and lowering retraction speed to around 10mm/s and a distance of about 2 and turning on comb. Otherwise if it retracts too fast, too often, on my rep1, it tends to dig in lose grip and stop extruding.

very viscous, so retraction can be a problem.

sticking problems

  • level the build plate (ideally when at printing temperature)
  • wipe down platform with acetone - or ethanol (85%) or windex

to try



I have had good results on my printrbot using aqua net on bare glass for both PLA and ABS. (Aqua net has a formulation containing acrylates, which appears to help.) Be sure the bed is cold, aqua net is highly flammable (used for combustion fuel in spud guns for just this reason).

-With the bed COLD, wash the glass with an alcohol wipe. Allow to dry. -If you are not removing the glass from the bed, cover the mechanicals with a thick cloth or cardboard so you don’t “gum up the works” -Spray one thin coat (hold the spray about 8 inches above the bed) left to right on the bed. Allow to dry (10 minutes or so) -Spray one thin coat from top to bottom (this helps to get an even coverage). Allow to dry thoroughly (20 minutes or so)

I get 5-6 prints before I repeat the process…I could probably get more, but aqua net is under $2.00 a can, and I’d rather waste it than ABS…at least until I start recovering it and making my own filament.

also: Another trick that works well is to add a tablespoon of PVA (or similar wood glue) and a teaspoon of detergent (I like no-scent laundry detergent) to about a liter of water in a spray bottle. Just apply a spray, then wipe off of the heated bed. I have had fantastic adhesion printing PLA directly on glass or on Kapton, although it tends to tear the Kapton right off of the plate because it sticks so well.

2013-04-09 Tue 14:25