Update : Alternatives to IPA for cleaning resin prints

A few days ago I posted on Alternatives to IPA for Cleaning Resin Prints .. After using a cleaning agent instead of IPA .. have a couple observations.

In the video Mr. Clean, Mean Green and Simple Green were used. I could not find any of these but picked up a gallon of of “Zip Heavy Duty Citrus Degreaser” .. and it works .. with a few caveats.

(1) I purchased my Prusa SL1 as a package with the Prusa CW1. That’s a a machine that Washes, Dries and Cures the prints. Naturally .. it was designed to use IPA .. which in a pandemic is basically impossible for me to get my hands on. Heck .. it is apparently a major pain to dispose of the used IPA at least according to Walt Gillespie of Rusty Stumps Scale Models.

During the wash mode there is hockey puck size and shape agitator that sits on the bottom of the wash tank. A rotating table underneath pulls the plastic agitator back and forth much like a washing machine works. There is metal inside the ‘puck’ to grab magnetically. This as I said was designed to work with IPA. The problem with the degreaser is that the ‘puck’ will float in it. That means to make it work you have to put the wash tank in place, drop the puck into it .. which is held in place by the metal plate underneath and then pour in the cleanser .. and the puck stays in place. That .. is something of a pain .. but works and once you get the routine down is not THAT difficult.

(2) The degreaser is cleaned off by running warm water over it. The downside is that it takes a while to dry .. the model being wet with water ….
and the drying function of the CW1 works much better with IPA (I assume as I haven’t had enough to play with).

I ran a print job earlier and .. it was bad. There were 14 O scale Manhole covers that came out with blisters on them. It looked like the supports had failed .. but .. a close inspection did not show that. This puzzled me so I ran a new print job .. making sure I had cleaned everything very well. It was while I was cleaning the last print that I saw the EXACT same blisters on the face of the Manhole coves .. but quickly realized that it was just water bubbles. I .. * think * .. I know now what the problem was with the bad print.

I put the print into the CW1 with water all over it .. wanting to see if the Drying + Curing cycle would work. What I *think* happened was that uncured resin got into the bubbles of water and then were cured .. so what I saw as ‘blisters’ was resin contaminated water bubbles that were cured in place.

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