March 12, 2021
ASK QUINLY: Why do I have to adhere the VAAPR bed directly to my build surface? Can’t I just use clips?
Quinly: My technology is designed to work with a VAAPR bed that is permanently attached to the printer both to ensure reliable, consistent prints and to protect me! Let me explain.
For 3d printed build surfaces, modularity has become one of the most popular selling points. Magnets and clips are being supplied with more and more printers to attach build surfaces. For the VAAPR bed though, we recommend adhering it directly to your print surface. This approach gives me the ability to reliably automate print after print and not get failures. The difference is, most beds do not work the way VAAPR does with different materials. People require different beds to grip different materials for printing, or to have the ability to lift and “pop” parts off when the print is finished. But VAAPR isn’t like most other beds. The green surface supplied in the kit grabs many different types of plastic firmly when hot, but then allows for the nozzle to push fully released parts off after it's cooled. These properties negate the need for a bed that can be lifted off or changed, because the surface does all the work of grabbing and releasing for you!
VAAPR bed being adhered to Quinly
The reason I’m able to loop prints so reliably is consistency. When the printer goes back to the next print, it is in the exact same position as it was before the previous print. No adhesive coating rubs off, and no bed is moved or warped. With parts with large bed contact areas, there is significant static cling for me to overcome when sliding a print off the bed, so binder clips just don’t have the grip needed to make sure the bed doesn’t slip. The bed needs to stay in the exact position on the printer, and adhesive is the most reliable way to make sure that happens.
In 3DQue’s print farm, they run inductive bed levelling sensors on all of their printers to get the most reliable first layers across many print cycles. They love these sensors for their precision, but have found great issues using them with metal bed clips as they tend to interfere with the reading of the bed height by being near the sensor as it probes. We don’t want to move the probing grid as that could reduce the reliability of the readings, so adhering the bed and doing away with clips solves the problem in a much cleaner way, and also comes with the previously mentioned benefits with the VAAPR bed.
Due to the nature of print looping, cooldown time starts to become more important as even relatively small improvements can have a large impact on the yield you get out of your printer. When 3DQue was designing the quinly kit, they had this in mind, which is why they did not include any kind of magnetic attachment, which introduces extra material that can conserve the bed temperature after the heater has turned off, and increase cooldown times significantly. Many kinds of magnetic sheets also carry the downside of changing shape over heat cycles, which could lead to further inconsistencies in print results. If you would like to see how we recommend how you adhere your bed to your printer, this video will guide you through the process.
Hopefully this answers your question about why I recommend adhering the VAAPR bed directly to the surface of your printer. If you have any more questions about the Quinly kit and its development, send them to us and I would be happy to answer them in another post!