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ASA success on the S5

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Posted (edited) · ASA success on the S5

I've been an ABS guy since having a Stratasys in the early 2000s..  Continued to use ABS in retirement with the S5.  I use the printer to make machine parts so the strength is valued. I dealt with the glass damage by using breakaway-printed rafts, the shrink problems by taping up all the gaps and throwing a quilt over the machine to get it as warm as I could and adding strategically placed skirts wherever possible. Doing so kept the heat from the build plate inside and helped raise the build space temperature.
Then I discovered ASA!
I cant quantify it but it seems to print "easier" than ABS, plenty strong and UV resistant.  I'm hooked. Had a little trouble with the breakaway raft, ASA just didn't seem to "stick" to it as well.  So I call the manufacturer and asked what they recommended.  Turns out they advise not to use breakaway and preferred HIPS for support material. I used HIPS in the early days (that was all Stratasys had for support) and wasn't really a fan but heck, I'll try it...
It worked fantastic.  But here's a unexpected benefit:  Where Breakaway isn't happy above 50C, HIPS likes 100C!.  that means while it's printing, all that extra heat from the build plate is really cooking the interior.  I've been seeing temps in the 140F range. I just pulled a print out this morning that was perfection.  So here's what I do.

  • Set build volume temp to 49C (so the fan stays off)  there's probably a better what that some Ultimaker nazi will point out but that's what I do.
  • Use HIPS for a raft with 15mm extra margin and 4 top layers..  nice and thick helps hold down corners on the ASA part.  no air gap or overlap.
  • Taping up the joints on the cabinet not required but wont hurt if you do - throwing a blanket over the machine helps immensely.


By the time the raft is finished the interior is nice and toasty and the ASA part will have minimal, if any, shrinkage.
My printer is in my detached un-insulated shop in the high desert.  Temps go from just below freezing to over 110 in the summer - temps in the printer stay in the mid 100s
Oh, btw, I use a Govee temp/humidity sensor sitting on the upper lip of the cabinet - not expensive and has wifi so you can monitor on your smartphone 😉





Edited by JTMD
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Posted · ASA success on the S5

Nice summary, thanks!


I also like ASA, but I don't use a raft. I have replaced the glass bed with a Filafarm Switch plate because I often chipped my glass plate. Since the switch plate I am happy.


If it prints easier than ABS depends on the brand you use. For example UM ABS prints much easier than other ABS, it is a different mixture, a bit lower temp resistance but I like it.


I use ASA from Filamentum and it works for my needs. (outdoor, UV, ...) 

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