Tuesday, March 21, 2017
3D Printing Build Plate Showdown Video
Build plates are one of the biggest place where prints succeed or fail. If a print doesn't stick to the build plate well it'll pop off or shift and the print will be a failure. And if the print doesn't come off after the print is done it can be a whole other headache. So for a good build plate there are 2 requirements: Stick and Release.
When I started 3D printing, Kapton tape was the darling d'jour. It worked great for ABS, but when PLA became popular it quickly became clear that we needed another solution. So the search for the "right" build surface began. For surfaces like BuildTax and PEI, they stick and release to some things well, but others they don't stick or they don't release.
However, there are 2 surfaces that seem to work for anything: hairspray or painter's tape and glue stick. These are the answer to the question. If you have a removable build surface, hairspray is great. If not, use the glue-stick solutions to and apply without spraying hairspray into your solution.
Of course if you're only ever going to be printing PLA on a non-heated build plate then I recommend BuildTak, but keep in mind you'll have to replace it in about 3 months, so keep it on hand. But if you're like me and you want to use many different materials, then hairspray or gluestick is the way to go.