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Printing on different substrates


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Posted · Printing on different substrates

I have an ultimaker 2+, and and trying to figure out if it is possible to print a structure on anything other than the print bed. Ideally, it would be printed on a silicon wafer, so thermal properties similar to the glass bed, but I was wondering anybody had tried this before considering there would be quite a few hurdles I imagine.

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    Posted · Printing on different substrates

    Haven't tried this before but think it would be possible. One thing that would be super important is to level the bed with the wafer on it or else you'll crash the head, as well as make sure you secure the wafer while printing or it might slide and you'd get a shifted print. Other then that it would probably just be a matter of finding a plastic that would bond to the wafer and well as a initial print temp. Good luck, if you try it post pics of how it went.

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    Posted · Printing on different substrates

    There are a bunch of compatible substrates. Like for example, polyester clear plastic inkjet shipping labels are perfect — great bonding on the surface designed to accept inkjet, and transmits heat. Also, there are acrylic “digital ground” primers that bond to lots if stuff and similarly allow good cohesion. But the place to start is to look at the technical data sheets for the materials you want to bond to each other. Find out if they actually repel each other — requiring priming or mechanical cohesion strategies such as crushing the new material into the substrate so that you are tearjng down into it a bit and using the tip of the nozzle to iron.


    As pdrinkut says, the key thing is knowing that top surface calibration to nozzle, which you can cheat by the above trick of “tramming” by running a top surface that is a bit lower (thus thinner) than you would print on a calibrationed glass bed, so that by the time you get a few layers down, you are printing on a surface corrected to your nozzle.

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