The Resin Printer Toolbox.
Not all printers are the same. When you are dealing with Resin printers like the Anycubic Photon, Longer 3D Orange 30, Elegoo Mars, and Wanhao Duplicator 7 (D7) and others, you have some special tools to finish processing the prints. Here is a quick guide on some of the tools to help you remove, clean and finish your Resin prints.
- Nitrile Exam Gloves are a must have. They keep the resin off your fingers protecting you from the material.
- Safety Glasses. Inexpensive, last a long time. Protect your eyes.
- Artist Pallet Knife. I use this to pry the prints off the plate. This works better than a scraper, usually since they are so thin.
- Isopropyl Alcohol (IPA) or Rubbing Alcohol ( Set of 12, 16 oz IPA bottles ) is needed to remove the resin from the outside of the print. You will need a lot of this for post processing. Here is a 1 gallon jug, which is probably a better deal. Best case is 99%, but I use 91% it works fine.
- A strainer is good for swishing parts and moving them through the rinse baths. I use a similar one to this one I found at a local Asian market. Some people prefer a more conventional strainer is good for putting parts in and move between your Isopropyl Alcohol and water to clean your prints. This ladle was also found by Facebook group member and I think it would work better on smaller parts.
- Disposable Aluminum Roasting Pans: Find these in your supermarket. I have short walled ones under my printer, in case the resin leaks. I have a larger, full baking one for working on prints, cleaning them, etc. Since it is silver and reflective, I also cure my prints on it with the UV nail dryer. This is a super simple, and inexpensive way to keep your work area mostly clean. I have a link to a big pack of them, but realistically, unless you print a TON or are really messy, you only need 2 or 3 a year. Something a bit nicer, and maybe to put under the above pans, you can get a silicon dog mat to help contain spills further.
- Funnels with Filters: This is a good first stage funnel. From there, you can get a smaller sized metal funnel (Here is an inexpensive one from AliExpress or this is the sieve with silicon funnel.) that are good to get the resin back into the bottle for later use. I’ve also printed one of these, and use it with the sieve that was in one of the paper funnels: https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2820545 I’ve used the same sieve about 5 times, so far. After done, toss it in the IPA to rinse the resin off.
- I use two of these for cleaning. One for IPA one for soapy water. Along with that, I have printed this out: https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2889333 Honestly, I really only have ever used the part that goes into it, and not put together the stands. I think doing it again I would go with one of these Pickle Storage containers – Here is another one.
- UV Nail Dryer is needed to finish curing the resin. Inexpensive and easy to use. You can also make a DIY yourself version with a small garbage can and a string of LED UV lights. The UV Nail dryer is the simple way. Another, somewhat fancier set up: Rolltop breadbox-This breadbox has been sold out for a while, a similar one is here, Plug in Timer or this Plug in Timer, Wire Rack, Blacklight Strip. You can even get some Chrome Silver Craft Vinyl (Amazon | AliExpress ) for turning any vessel into a reflective vessel. (This is “technically” nice to have, but I much prefer this to using the sun.)
- Maintenance –
— I’d say above here, is the “Need” category. below here, are nice-to-have items.
- I’ve recently moved my resin printers onto one of these wire racks from Lowes.
- I can fit 2 resin printers like the Mars, Photon, or Orange 10/30 on one of these full size sheet pans. They pretty much fill up the wire rack size. (If you have a local restaurant supply store, you can probably get this cheaper, there.)
- I also picked up a couple of cafe serving trays to put stuff on, on the wire rack. They are quieter to move than the metal trays. (If you have a local restaurant supply store, you can probably get this cheaper, there)
- A plastic scraper to reduce wear on the build plate and help you get prints off is a good idea.
- Scott Shop Towels let you quickly clean the parts. These are heavy duty shop towels to stand up to rigorous cleaning. I usually use Paper Towels.
- An inexpensive Razor Glass scraper can also be used to help get prints off the build plate.
- Exacto Knives are great for removing extra pieces on the print and in general, just cleaning the print up.
- A Jewelry Polishing Machine (Ultrasonic cleaner) is nice for cleaning your prints as well. Makes things a little easy to get the last bits cleaned up. In practice, put your part in another container and put the IPA in there. Then, put the container in the ultrasonic cleaner and fill the rest of the chamber with water.
If I’ve missed something please let me know in the comments so I can add them. I am sure there are a bunch of tips out there that I have not thought about yet for this style of printing.