I have sunk even further to the dark side and have stepped into the world of Resin 3D Printing.
God help me now!
Four hours on the first "test" print.
OK! Here is the first official DC Resin Print.
It was done with Elegoo grey Photopolymer Resin, sliced with Chitubox and printed on the Elegoo Mars 2 Pro.
Quality so far is pretty decent. As my workflow improves, I'm sure I'll get some "wow worthy" prints.
The cauldron is slightly misshapen along the bottom edge. More than likely from handling it too long before curing.
I did the cauldron with medium supports at an "ultra" setting. So, yeah, there were a lot of supports.
As a result, there is some scaring on the surface. the bottom did have lettering, but with the above support settings
they were mangled.
The Witch topper was sliced with light supports at a standard density. Soooo much easier to remove and reduced the
pre-cure handling time quite a bit. The supports mostly peeled away with some cutting with snips on the raft and at
a few "fragile" points that I didn't want to chance breaking. The detail is pretty good. I'm sure once I play around
and with the slicer and get the right resolution settings down I should get those "wow worthy" detailed prints.
Sanding was pretty easy. I used 220 grit with an 80 grit to widen the inside of the cauldron for a looser fit for
the topper. The whole model was air-brushed with an Army Painter Ash Grey. Hopefully Nikki will get some time to do
some real painting.
Overall, it was a simple process. the smell wasn't too horrifying, but after a couple of hours into a four-hour print
the smell did permeate through the shop and into the main house. For the second print I opened the outside shop door
for some decent air flow. The door was right next to the table with the printers so that worked out in a pinch.
We will take the four inch fume extractor pump from the Glowforge and rig up a fume hood behind the printers. There
is a dryer vent drilled into the wall under the table. Should work out quite nicely.
the bottle of resin was a 500 gram one that came with the bundle. It did require 95% or better Isopropyl Alcohol to
wash the prints. I pretty much exhausted out on hand supply. I think I will go with the water washable resin come
payday. It is a bit more expensive, but what you save on gallons of IPA will offset the increase.
In total both pieces took about 4 hours each. Not bad for 8 hours. The machine is VERY quiet just a light hum from
the fan and the lead screw moving the build plate.
I was told not to "waste money" on the Curing/Wash Station, but boy am I glad I did. It just made the process so much
easier. Everything fit together beautifully, the wash vat did a good job of washing the model. I did have to mix some
water in with the IPA. Probably close to a 60/40 mix (IPA/Water). Which could have led to some lesser detail. But like
I said, I had to scavenge almost all the IPA we had in the house. I did save a bottle to clean my FDM beds and to clean
I would certainly recommend the Elegoo Mars to anyone wanting to get into SLA printing. I would, however, say get some
time in with an FDM printer first. Get used to support, modeling and get a good workflow going to build upon.
I would say, generally speaking the leap from FDM to SLA wasn't that hard. The machines were ready pretty much right out
of the box. The leveling process wasn't 100% clear in the little tiny manual. Some YouTube videos did help. One thing
would do differently from the manual is; level the build plate with the piece of paper, then put the vat in and readjust
the Z Offset with the vat in place. This will ensure a good spacing ad lead to great adhesion. An upgrade I am thinking
of is a flex plate to put on the stok build plate. That will make removing the model MUCH easier and will prevent scratching
the stock plate. I would certainly recommend a plastic scraper or a semi flexible once similar to the once used in applying
Most definitely a positive experience and nowhere near the "hoor" stories you hear from folks just jumping into SLA feet first
and ill prepared.