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Prints aren’t sticking to the build plate!

The most common failure would be the adhesion problem which means that you only get support and raft structures on the build plate instead of the intended object. In this case you will see part of the model still sticking to build plate and part of it sticking to resin vat.

Though this experience is so frustrating, sometimes you even get nothing on the build plate and only raft/bottom sticking to resin vat. So before solving this issue, let’s make clear why the raft/bottom is not sticking to build plate first.

Most of the reasons why the raft/bottom is not sticking to build plate are related to the build plate and the first layer. If the build plate is not flat, you will likely have adhesion problems and possible failures especially when you are attempting large prints. The raft or bottom may cause the failures for the generation of supports, and this is when the print fails. Besides, if the distance between the screen and the build plate is too huge, your print won’t stick properly to the build plate. While it might be tempting to start printing, the first step is to make sure your 3D printer is properly calibrated and levelled.

If the first layer of your model is too thin, the force will not be enough to peel the first layer away from the FEP film. If printed too fast, the first layer will not have time to bond to the build plate. Increase your exposure time of the first layer make it around 10 times longer than your normal layers.

Once the support and raft structures have adhered to the build plate we have a good base to work from, but there is no print?

When you're experiencing difficulties like this we need to look at the support structure you are using.

The key part of the supports usually is the top part of the support. The top part is the key factor to link the model and support. There are 3 parameters about the top: contact depth, upper diameter and lower diameter.

The deeper the contact depth, the deeper the support tip inserts into the model. We need to confirm that the contact depth is deep enough to withstand the tug of war between the build plate and the FEP film in the bottom of the vat. However this operation will also leave more visible marks after removal.

The thicker the upper diameter, the stronger the support is, and the same goes for the lower diameter. It's helpful to reasonably adjust the upper diameter and lower diameter, especially if the part will not allow for increasing the contact depth.

Excluding some equipment and hardware factors, most adhesion problems are due to the poor settings of support structures. There is no “one-fits-all” parameter setting that can be duplicated for any type of resin or with any type of 3D design. That means, the printing parameters may differ every time when you have a new resin or different models.

However, rest assured! Just try it! Follow this general guideline to customize printing parameters for each print.

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FTD Resins

Small steam wagon

Fine Detail Resin

Designed for LED/LCD printers

Dental part

Dentifix-3D

Dental resin high & low reactivity

Model Traction Engine

Industrial Blend

Excellent all round resin

 
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