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  1. #1
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    Borosilicate Glass - plate still flat?

    Hello,

    Does anyone have installed the 3mm borosilicate glass on top of a non flat aluminium plate?

    I searched the forum but couldn't find a clear answer.

    My aluminium plate is getting higher and higher at the centre.

    Did the glass managed to get the plate completely flat or does it curve also?

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/3D-Printer...item1c4a2653fd

  2. #2
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    It's not the plate. I have borosilicate glass and the problem is still the same because it's the x-axis optical rods (on the x-wing) that are sagging that makes the plate feels like higher in the middle.

    However I dial in a good height and don't really have an issue with this problem, all my prints comes out fine but you have to get the first layer be good and the rest will be fine. (for the gap, do the centre of the heatbed for the right gap, start with 150% for the first layer to get a slightly "squished" first layer)

    Or you can opt for the new upgraded $199 10mm optical rods and Korean bearings which solves this problem.
    Check it out at http://igg.me/at/rapide-lite/x/6072062 (look for Lite 200 Optic Bearing Upgrade)

    Personally I don't think you need it unless you've modded the extruder or hot ends to be heavier or if the problem is really bad.
    Last edited by lawong; 03-29-2015 at 01:36 PM.

  3. #3
    Administrator bolsoncerrado's Avatar
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    I do think its the bed and not the rods since the X attach moves fine from side to side without getting cogged in the middle and a curvy bar would make it harder to move, harder enough to notice when moved by hand...

    I installed a new bed and a borosilicate glass on top, so we'll see if the thing is smooth or the extruder feels bent once I set the extruder up again on the SAME X bars....

  4. #4
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    My problem is in fact the bed.
    It is very easy to see that it is not perfectly flat, with a ruler or a laser bean.
    I used both and its obvious that the centre is higher ~0.2 mm.

    I tried levelling the bed at the centre, instead of the outside corners, but then if the first layer goes a bit far away from the centre the filament does not adhere and ruins the print.

    If the borosilicate glass does not prevent this, then I need to change the bed or go for the auto-levelling?
    What about trying to fix the aluminium plate, then applying the glass?

  5. #5
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    Well if you think it's the bed, then the borosilicate glass should solve your problem.

    No need to change out the bed, just mount the glass over the existing heat bed.

    What I did was to take off the kapton off the aluminum heat bed, mount kapton on the glass using Windex spray, change the thumbscrews out to the hex screws that was supplied (the glass is 200x214 and heat bed is 214x214 but the thumbscrews gets in the way). mount the glass onto the bare heat bed with bull dog clips on the front and back edges (2x front, 2x back).

    There is no auto-levelling hardware in the Rapide and the software auto-levelling is only found in a few software like MatterControl.

    IMHO auto-leveling hardware is not very cost effective, and is not entirely reliable. Think about it, once you level the bed, it stays level until you change something on the bed, and if you did it correctly the first time, it is unlikely to go out of level all by itself. So maybe you need to auto-level once in a month or two, but once you are very good with the levelling, you can even do it on-the-fly which I do to tweak during 1st layer print of the skirt to make sure it has the right "squish".

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joao View Post
    ...............I tried levelling the bed at the centre, instead of the outside corners, but then if the first layer goes a bit far away from the centre the filament does not adhere and ruins the print...................
    You should try to level the bed 1/2 way from the low point to the high point, this way the filament will just touch the bed at the low point and be squashed down at the high point and as lawong mentioned increase the first layer to give you extra filament to help overcome the problem.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I currently am trying glass on top of my bed and I still have low and high points. If I decide to keep the glass I will probably put on more kapton sheet/s and I will add thermal compound to try and fill the gaps.

  7. #7
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    I might try to fix the plate next weekend, applying some pressure down where the plate is higher.
    With something like this.
    Screen Shot 2015-03-29 at 21.34.02.png

    Then apply the glass to give more resistance to warping.

  8. #8
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    I've been using Borosilicate Glass for a few months now and have been printing around the clock. I have perfectly flat/smooth print bottoms and the print pops right off after putting the glass in the freezer for an hour or so. I bought a second glass so that I can print while the other is in the freezer. Just finished a 27 part order for a customer and it would have been a real pain if I was still using Blue Painters tape. Bed level only matters for the first layer so this takes care of the problem and makes the print easy to remove once its done. I will be printing on glass until something better comes along!

    If you can't get an extremely perfect first layer then just bump up your first layer extrusion height to 200% and that should take care of any error.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joao View Post
    I might try to fix the plate next weekend, applying some pressure down where the plate is higher.
    With something like this.
    Screen Shot 2015-03-29 at 21.34.02.png

    Then apply the glass to give more resistance to warping.
    Is that a permanent solution? Glass don't stay bent like metal, they flex back the moment pressure is released unless you anneal it with high temperatures but borosilicate is treated to handle wide changes of temperature and flex in different parts of the surface withour breaking or cracking. like testtubes where you hold one end with your fingers and heat the other end red hot without breaking. Hence it is very flexible compared to regular glass. Commercially known as "Pyrex".

    In fact regular glass plate will also work fine unless the heat bed can go from room temperature to 90C in seconds instead of minutes then there is no danger of cracking From thermal shock.

    Contrary to popular belief that borosilicate glass is flatter than ordinary glass, it is not.

    Borosilicate glass is tougher in temperature and some physical handling but it has to be created by a higher temperance there is no guarantee that you will get a flat glass from every batch.
    Last edited by lawong; 03-30-2015 at 08:47 AM.

  10. #10
    Administrator bolsoncerrado's Avatar
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    I never heard of someone putting the glass on the freezer before hehe sounds fun.

    FYI an autoleveling bed "in realtime" is just $15 in components or less, then u need to install the latest Marlin firmware and set it properly. I posted a video weeks ago of an autoleveling Z on realtime... It works and it's cheap.

    BUt if you go for the glass route, which will be fine, try to get a flat bed first, it will improve it "forever".

    Of course, the ultimate combo is glass+autolevel sensor.

 

 

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