What makes a print a perfect print? How do I get the best results possible every time I print?
This post will try to answer all of your dental 3D printing doubts and provide an outline for printing dental models!
• Dental Arch printing for clear aligners
A few tips I give all dental aligner printers are:
1. Do not over crowd the build plate.
2. Add light off delays! Allowing the resin to settle before firing the next layer drastically reduces print failures.
3. Use transition layers! As the FEP gets worn down after repeated use, it can tend to stick onto printed layers harder than it used to. Adding Transition layers aids by adding inter-layer strength, thereby reducing print errors and failures!
4. Above all, provide a strong base to your models! Anchor them down to your build plate, do this by either printing the models flat onto the build plate (Only if there are a few models) or make sure to have solid supports! Don't skimp out on supports! What I like to do is add a few heavy supports and a lot of medium supports. The heavy supports help to anchor down the model, so that the geometry of the model isn't lost. Medium supports add much needed supports to smaller areas. (Supports aren't needed if your models are directly on the build plate, but make sure there is sufficient contact!)
5. This is more of a quality of life tip, try printing your models vertically. Although it takes longer, the throughput is much higher! and the chances of failures are so much lower than printing horizontally. As long as you follow the above tips your prints will come out fine!
6. Re-level your build plate regularly! Do not take this for granted! A badly aligned plate can ruin hour long prints!
7. Vat cleaning cycles are your friend! It is very recommended that you do a vat clean run after a failed print or after a set number of prints. As this can greatly improve the life of your FEP, your printer and reduce print failures! After a dozen prints there might be small parts that would've fallen off your models, or there might be failed models too! A vat cleaning run can completely rid of all those stray parts and failed prints! Peel off the film of resin from the FEP and you're good to go!
Those are some of the tips I always give dental aligner manufacturers.
Stay safe and happy printing! And as always, SHAKE WELL BEFORE USE!