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Experimenting with Innoglow filament and Buildtak

After some successful prints on the Kapton plate printing surface that came with my Printrbot, I ordered some "special" filaments, namely ColorFabb Copperfill and Innofil Innoglow.

First, I wanted to print the little treefrog found on Thingiverse in the glow-at-night filament. As usual I heated the build platform to 65 °C, and printed at 210 °C. However, whenever the frog's front legs were printed, and a few millimeter into the print, the PLA's edge curled up, and the printhead pushed the leg off from the platform.

Some Internet searching revealed that this issue is quite known to happen when printing PLA, and a common suggestion was either better cooling or printing at lower temperature. So, to lower the overall temperature of the "system" (print head, molten PLA, the object being printed, and the printbed), I tried to print without heating the platform. This kept the frog from sticking to the platform at all, the print came loose already at the first or second infill layer.

Having then ordered a sheet of "Buildtak", and replaced the Kapton with this stuff, my test prints were sticking to the printbed so well that I had to pry them off with a blade.

Printing the frog with Innoglow again, then, worked without further problems: The slight upward curling on the frog's front legs happened again, but a bit less than before, and the parts were sticking well enough to the printbed that the hot end nozzle was able to slightly push them down again on the following layers.

Photo of glow-in-the-dark frog on the buildplate

The print quality itself is a bit different from my regular PLAs, as well when done on my machine as on a friend's Zyyx printer, so that seems to be material-related. However, this shall be covered in more detail in another post.