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UM vs UM+


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I'm really excited about the sale runing now till october 26th. want to get more UMs. (I have 3 different printers that I run for a school and if I could have all UM my life would be so much better, also have been kicking myself for months since I missed the last UM sale+doodle3D)

Maybe some of you have also been agonising over the same issue .... Heated Bed VS Blue Tape maybe share you're thoughts on which model YOU would buy and why?

Because at this moment I am totally a "Blue Tape Guy" let me explain why.

1. I have not had good luck with heated beds. My UM1 does not have a heated bed, but the MakerGear M2 I have does, and due to the known issues with heated beds...not sticking, corner lifting, corner shrinking, messy water cleanup+glue stick, sagging. etc...I gave up trying to get it to work and basically just put blue tape on the glass and have great results everytime.

2. when needed, I am fast and good at putting blue tape down.

3. My printer room does not have a sink.

4. I often run many small jobs one after the other and blue tape allows me to just pop off one print and then keep going, often before the nozzle even drops more than 30 degrees...BUT ... with a heated bed I need to wait for a cool down and removal and possibly re-glue stick, before printing again.

5. I ONLY print with PLA. (I am at a school with small kids and ABS fumes are toxic)

I have been using a UM1 over a year, printing most every day. I love it.

BUT I worry that I might be missing some vital info about heated beds...a lot of maunfacters seem to be going that way, I can not figure out why. Since so many people are posting about the problems and accepting issues like shrinking parts.


I also think , why should I spend money for a heated bed if I am just going to use blue tape all the time.

I am open to seeing the Heated Bed merits. if you have time to share I would appreacte it , thanks.


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    Even if you don't use the heated bed I'd still go for the upgrade as the z-stage of the new printer is much more stable. Level it once (with the easier to use three point system) and you don't really have to re-level unless you're very violent with it.

    Maybe buy another sheet of glass (cheap at your local glass supplier) and just switch out the glass between prints?

    The glue isn't messy IMHO. IF you need to re-glue between prints you can just put a bit more on and spread it around with a damp cloth/sponge.

    Personally I use ordinary "white wood glue" diluted with water and then spread on the bed. I've re-coated my bed once in the last 3 months or so (granted i don't print a ton).

    Not sure what you mean by shrinking parts. If anything a heated bed prevents shrinking (that's sorta the whole idea behind a heated bed).


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    I run a um original with no heated bed and glass plates - I have blue tape under the glass plate and a small 3mm spacer to fool the end switch when I have glass on. I use dilute PVA - I probably print for about amonth or so before I wash and re-coat the beds.

    That is for PLA - for XT I use the tape and get no warping, but I want XT to be as easy as PLA - so I am going to install the upgrade and see what happens (I have 2 UM classics so if the heated bed is no good for XT I will still have the cold glass/blue tape set up)

    While I am always impressed at the accuracy - I am curious to see if the z-stage improvements will be worth it without the heated bed.

    So I love having both glass and blue tape available - if I don't like the HB then I can just use the same glass sheets I have now - it has just dawned on me that I could put blue tape on the underside and then have a removable blue tape plate :)

    But I really like having an OEM heatbed option.



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    I'm kinda like you in a way, I print pretty much exclusively PLA and was skeptical of heated beds since the main selling feature usually is "now you can print ABS"! Which I didn't care about that much.

    It has many advantages over blue tape as I've learned since going from UMO to the UM2. Here are a few things to consider:

    -It's SUPER convenient. I cannot stress this enough. For PLA, you don't need glue or tape.. or anything. You literally hit print and it goes. First layer is perfect every time. (except really tall thin things sometimes) I clean my plate with a sprits of alcohol if it seems to get dirty. But no need to do anything if you didn't use glue.

    -Glassy smooth bottoms. Not only will you oogle over the smoothness of your flat bottoms. They make joining pieces virtually seamless along the bottom surface because it's perfectly flat and smooth. There is little to no curling of corners that can still happen with tape.

    -Also, being a stickler for detail. I avoided the UMO's bottom surface on highly visible surfaces, using only the sides usually where the resolution is highest. I'm happy to use the UM2's flat glass bottom though.

    -When your print is done, your part just pops off. You don't need to carefully trying to salvage tape. No tape stuck to the bottom of your prints. and no knife between buildplate and tape. Simply grab your piece, throw away the priming brim and start your next job.

    -No arranging prints in Cura to avoid the bad tape spots. You know what I mean... Print in the center every time.

    -The ONLY thing that the heated bed doesn't do better than blue tape is the super tiny tall pieces and the heatup and cooldown time.

    The UMO+ functions pretty much exactly like the UM2. It seems to prime the same way and start the same way which is much more reliable than the UMO.


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    Posted · UM vs UM+

    Not sure what you mean by shrinking parts.


    thanks for the reply! The shrinking I think i've read about is the lower layers shrinking a bit more that the upper layers since they are held at a higher temp longer..maybe I need top re-read the forum posts talking about that.


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    I use blue tape on a (unheated) UM2 or UM+ bed quite often for small prints. So you can still use this route on those machines if you want.

    I like me UMO that I have at home. But mine is upgraded almost to the UMO+ point, except for the heated bed. The UMO+ is already worth it for just the newer electronics.


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    I never printed on blue tape so i cannot really say if it's better or not.

    What i can say is that i mainly print PLA on the UM2, i apply a little glue once in while (every 2 months roughly) when i have some trouble with the first layer adherence. It prints very well, sticks good but not like hell.

    Of course you have to wait until the bed is heated up to 60°c before starting to print, what i usually do when i start the printer is heating up the bed manually to 50°c then doing my slicing and tweaking of parameters in Cura. When i put the SD-card it has usually reached 50°c and it then starts printing in a minute or so.

    When the print is finish i usually wait a couple of minutes depending on the object size and contact with the bed and i just take the print off with no effort.

    Anyway if i had to choose between the UMO and UMO+ i would probably choose the latest


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    thanks for the reply! The shrinking I think i've read about is the lower layers shrinking a bit more that the upper layers since they are held at a higher temp longer..maybe I need top re-read the forum posts talking about that.


    Ah, I see what you mean now. It can be that the lowest layers are the correct size, then the walls "cave in" a bit before going back to the correct size again. Kind of like you put a rubber band around the lower part of the print. This can be dealt with using more cooling and lowering the bed heat a bit. There's a bit more info here.


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    For small prints you don't have to wait for the glass to cool. And for PLA you only have to heat up to above 40C (I heat to 50C to be well over the threshold).

    Glass is an improvement over blue tape.

    Heated bed is an improvement over raft.

    But you can always go back to the older technologies (blue tape or raft) and they will still work on a printer with glass.

    I also don't have a sink nearby. It's not a problem. I have a squirt water bottle to remoisten the PVA glue occasionally. Mostly only if I need to print a large print and if I have scraped some of the PVA glue off the bed. But even this is not necessary.


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