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PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help  

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egar
 egar
(@egar)
Estimable Member
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

@diem

Thanks for the wet paper towel suggestion.  I'll give that a try.  Until now, I've been spreading a very thin layer with my finger only.

Posted : 06/05/2021 2:26 pm
John
 John
(@john-6)
Reputable Member
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

@tim-2

So is the general opinion that ammonia is the key chemical to act as the release agent? Some glass cleaners dont have NH3 and it would be interesting to know if these work too. Likewise I am also wondering if reference to windex is as a generic term like hoover.

cheers John

i3 Mk3 [aug 2018]

Posted : 11/05/2021 3:14 am
--
 --
(@)
Illustrious Member
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

@john-6

I'm not a chemist, so I am guessing here (well, semi educated opinion). Since ammonia evaporates at fairly low temps, my guess is the other surfactants in the Windex are what keeps the PETG off the surface. Think dry soap scum. Windex is preferred because it is self leveling when compared to glue sticks, and easier to clean up. 

In a pinch, I'll even use fingerprints to avoid strong adhesion. Yep - full hand prints rubbed all over the bed, and a dab of alcohol to even out the oil. It works fairly well - sometimes too well - I've had PETG prints detach when using this method. lol. 

 

Posted : 11/05/2021 4:20 am
cwbullet
(@cwbullet)
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

From experience, I can confirm the finger / hand print technique.  I mistakenly liked on to this.  Windex is my preferred, but I have tried the we towel and glue stick.  There are many ways to skin this cat.  Juts find one and use it.  

--------------------
Chuck H
3D Printer Review Blog

Posted : 11/05/2021 9:36 am
John
 John
(@john-6)
Reputable Member
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

@cwbullet

I guess my question was - will any window cleaner work or does it need Ammonia. To be honest I dont want to make a rookie mistake  on a new print bed ( geckotek) and window cleaner certain sounds the easiest.

i3 Mk3 [aug 2018]

Posted : 11/05/2021 9:59 am
cwbullet
(@cwbullet)
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

@john-6

It happens to all of us.  Ammonia is needed.  

--------------------
Chuck H
3D Printer Review Blog

Posted : 11/05/2021 10:00 am
John
 John
(@john-6)
Reputable Member
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

a little contradictory to @Tim-2 if I read his post correctly but I guess the safe printing thing is to get the ammonia one - but it isn't a great chemical to use

i3 Mk3 [aug 2018]

Posted : 11/05/2021 10:03 am
cwbullet
(@cwbullet)
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

@john-6

Ammonia in window cleaner is plenty safe.  I wouldn't huff it, but a spray in 3d printing will not hurt anything.  

--------------------
Chuck H
3D Printer Review Blog

Posted : 11/05/2021 10:13 am
fuchsr liked
Hunter328
(@hunter328)
Active Member
Topic starter answered:
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

Thanks again for all of the help!

Is it possible to use too much Windex? I haven’t had time to do much tinkering, but the first two test squares I’ve done trying to get the z axis calibration correct, the PETG has been lifting up off of the print sheet.

The test squares (in case anyone doesn’t know) puts down a thick outer square perimeter, then a thinner inner square. It then prints straight lines at a diagonal to fill up the inner square.  
The lifting is occurring at points where the lines meet the inner square.  This messes up each following line until it gets to a point where the lines are smaller than where it messed up and it can reconnect with the inner square.

I hope that made sense.

This being the first time I’ve tried anything besides PLA, and not having had any trouble printing with PLA, I’m not sure what part of what I’m doing is causing this to happen.

If anyone has any ideas, I’d love to hear them?

Posted : 11/05/2021 1:18 pm
cwbullet
(@cwbullet)
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help
Posted by: @hunter328

Thanks again for all of the help!

Is it possible to use too much Windex? 

yes.  A light spray and wipe is all that is needed.

--------------------
Chuck H
3D Printer Review Blog

Posted : 11/05/2021 8:34 pm
nochkin
(@nochkin)
Active Member
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

Besides Windex I would suggest another option is to use a regular masking tape. Nothing else is needed when you have that.

It sticks well with PETG during printing and it's comparable easy to remove your print after it's done.

Posted : 14/05/2021 4:17 am
cwbullet
(@cwbullet)
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

@nochkin

I have not tried that recently.  A great addition to the thread! 

--------------------
Chuck H
3D Printer Review Blog

Posted : 14/05/2021 9:29 am
nochkin
(@nochkin)
Active Member
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

@cwbullet,

I actually started using the masking tape on a glass bed about 2-3 months ago. I used to use a glue stick before.

I print mostly using PETG and it's been a great result for me. PLA/PLA+ sticks too.

No need for any glue stick or anything like that. Once removed, it's clean, dry and ready for a new print.

A few time I ripped off the tape when removed the print, but that's easy to replace. I just purchased a big roll of the widest available tape to make it easier to apply.

I don't even bother re-leveling the bed when I replace the tape, but I had to do it when installed it for the first time, of course.

Posted : 14/05/2021 3:57 pm
Morpheus31
(@morpheus31)
Active Member
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

So I am clear and don't mess anything up, could you please detail the smooth sheet prep process before starting a PETG print?

Posted : 18/06/2022 10:31 pm
cwbullet
(@cwbullet)
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

Steps:  

  1. Clean with IPA.  
  2. First layer calibration.  
  3. Then, I just print on it.  

I always start with a small print to test adhesion.  If the filament is real sticky, I add a little windex to the plate to reduce adhesion on large prints.  

Posted by: @thkhuu31

So I am clear and don't mess anything up, could you please detail the smooth sheet prep process before starting a PETG print?

 

--------------------
Chuck H
3D Printer Review Blog

Posted : 18/06/2022 11:07 pm
Morpheus31
(@morpheus31)
Active Member
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

 

Posted by: @cwbullet

Steps:  

  1. Clean with IPA.  
  2. First layer calibration.  
  3. Then, I just print on it.  

I always start with a small print to test adhesion.  If the filament is real sticky, I add a little windex to the plate to reduce adhesion on large prints.  

Posted by: @thkhuu31

So I am clear and don't mess anything up, could you please detail the smooth sheet prep process before starting a PETG print?

 

Thanks for the reply.  You mean if too sticky with the test print, spray the sheet down with Windex and wipe (similar to isopropyl) before the print?

Posted : 18/06/2022 11:59 pm
Crab
 Crab
(@crab)
Estimable Member
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

Ask 10 people and get 10 different replies.. hard to know what is good for you.. 

I love printing PETG and for me it prints better than PLA. I print it on a rough sheet though. That is my favorite PEI sheet. 

When I was printing PETG on the smooth.. I ruined a small spot when I didn't treat the surface somehow. I tried Windex.. wanted it to work.. but it didn't for me. To the poster who uses nothing, his bed temp is low.. in the 70's.. so that might work.. but if you use the default PETG Prusa profile by mistake and the bed temp gets up to 80+ it might bond to the smooth sheet and then ruin the spot on removal. 

My favorite by far is glue stick on the smooth sheet.. but I watched a few videos on it.. One person mixes glue stick & water and then smears the bed. The secret here is that the glue stick needs to be a very light coating and you MUST, MUST wait for it to dry (same for windex). So I take the glue stick and make one pass over a section and then one pass over another.. resist the temptation to make two layers over one area.. then wait for it to dry to a dull matte finish.

The masking tape might work but it messes with your Z height and that is critical. It would not be something I'd try, but if it works for that person.. it works.. 

However, my Prusa rough sheet has been fabulous on PETG. When it cools the parts slide off.. but when printing, they adhere well. Bed temps are up between 80 and 85.  Problem with having 2 sheets is the Z heights are different. You can select the sheet in the LCD menu.. but when (not if) you forget, and you print on the smooth sheet and you have the firmware set for rough, you likely will gouge your smooth sheet, as it is 0.3 higher.. Prusa needs a way to auto-sense sheets.. 

But you only make that mistake once..

 

Posted : 19/06/2022 12:34 am
cwbullet
(@cwbullet)
RE: PETG Printing on Smooth Sheet Help

 

Posted by: @crab

My favorite by far is glue stick on the smooth sheet.. but I watched a few videos on it.. One person mixes glue stick & water and then smears the bed. The secret here is that the glue stick needs to be a very light coating and you MUST, MUST wait for it to dry (same for windex). So I take the glue stick and make one pass over a section and then one pass over another.. resist the temptation to make two layers over one area.. then wait for it to dry to a dull matte finish.

The masking tape might work but it messes with your Z height and that is critical. It would not be something I'd try, but if it works for that person.. it works.. 

However, my Prusa rough sheet has been fabulous on PETG. When it cools the parts slide off.. but when printing, they adhere well. Bed temps are up between 80 and 85.  Problem with having 2 sheets is the Z heights are different. You can select the sheet in the LCD menu.. but when (not if) you forget, and you print on the smooth sheet and you have the firmware set for rough, you likely will gouge your smooth sheet, as it is 0.3 higher.. Prusa needs a way to auto-sense sheets.. 

But you only make that mistake once..

 

Glue stick works but can be messy.  As long as you do it right, it works as a release agent.  It is really not needed with most PETGs.  

Blue painters tape works on a plain steel bed.  I tend to use it when I think the filament is so sticky it will mess up my bed (rare).  

I always start with a small print with new filaments to prevent the "oh crap, I messed up my printing sheet" moment.  

--------------------
Chuck H
3D Printer Review Blog

Posted : 19/06/2022 12:58 am
Morpheus31
(@morpheus31)
Active Member
RE:

 

Posted by: @crab

Ask 10 people and get 10 different replies.. hard to know what is good for you.. 

I love printing PETG and for me it prints better than PLA. I print it on a rough sheet though. That is my favorite PEI sheet. 

When I was printing PETG on the smooth.. I ruined a small spot when I didn't treat the surface somehow. I tried Windex.. wanted it to work.. but it didn't for me. To the poster who uses nothing, his bed temp is low.. in the 70's.. so that might work.. but if you use the default PETG Prusa profile by mistake and the bed temp gets up to 80+ it might bond to the smooth sheet and then ruin the spot on removal. 

My favorite by far is glue stick on the smooth sheet.. but I watched a few videos on it.. One person mixes glue stick & water and then smears the bed. The secret here is that the glue stick needs to be a very light coating and you MUST, MUST wait for it to dry (same for windex). So I take the glue stick and make one pass over a section and then one pass over another.. resist the temptation to make two layers over one area.. then wait for it to dry to a dull matte finish.

The masking tape might work but it messes with your Z height and that is critical. It would not be something I'd try, but if it works for that person.. it works.. 

However, my Prusa rough sheet has been fabulous on PETG. When it cools the parts slide off.. but when printing, they adhere well. Bed temps are up between 80 and 85.  Problem with having 2 sheets is the Z heights are different. You can select the sheet in the LCD menu.. but when (not if) you forget, and you print on the smooth sheet and you have the firmware set for rough, you likely will gouge your smooth sheet, as it is 0.3 higher.. Prusa needs a way to auto-sense sheets.. 

But you only make that mistake once..

 

I have a textured sheet for PETG and it works very well for the filaments that I have been using.  However, I have been trying to print this ONE model but continually fails:

https://www.printables.com/model/24539-torque-wrench-handles-from-10nm-up-to-30nm

Trying to print the rotor with PETG  in the orientation that is in the STL ,which is also suggested by the designer.  However, every time I have tried to print this, even with brim, it fails about 3/4 way through because the print detaches from the surface.  

The creator suggested using the smooth sheet instead.   I also asked for tips on printing the rotor (i.e. orientation, supports), but no one has replied and from one what I have read, supports are not needed. That’s why I am researching how/if I should use a smooth sheet for PETG.  I honestly don’t want to, but may not have a choice if I want to print this part.

 

This post was modified 2 months ago 2 times by Morpheus31
Posted : 19/06/2022 2:59 am
Stephen Cutajar
(@stephen-cutajar)
Active Member
RE:

It would be interesting to know, since this is a dedicated Prusa forum and Prusa farms print PETG for their own parts, what the actual method and type of sheet Prusa themselves use? 

This post was modified 2 months ago by Stephen Cutajar
Posted : 21/06/2022 10:38 am
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