3D Print Quality Troubleshooting Guide

Having trouble printing?

Refer to the images below which relate to your problem. Click on the tab on the left for more information.

(Click to enlarge image)

Crack in model

Delamination

Holes in model

Lines on printed model

Model falling from build plate

Model parts not fitting together

Only supports printed

Squashed model

Sticky Model

Supports partly missing

Vat Leak

Warping

Whiteness on model after post exposure

If your model has cracked, it should be made hollow. Meshmixer is a good tool for hollowing prints. It can be downloaded from our Support page.

To hollow your model follow these two steps:

  1. Download Meshmixer from our support page.
  2. Use a wall thickness of 2-3mm.

We recommend that large models are always hollowed.

 

If the model has very fine detail, we recommend the following two steps:

  1. In Slice Profile settings, reducing the “z retract speed” to the minimum 15.
  2. Placing the model at a 45 degree angle on both the x and y directions.

Hollowing your model will also help you save resin and reduce your print cost!

Example of crack in model

Delamination is a sticking issue and has a number of possible causes:

  1. No screen protector on your LCD screen. A screen protector not only protects your LCD screen from resin but also works as a release agent between the LCD screen and vat film, reducing sticking.
  2. Cured or liquid resin on your LCD screen. If there is any resin on your screen, your vat has probably leaked and caused your model to delaminate. Mop liquid resin up with an absorbent paper towel and chip away any cured resin carefully with a plastic card.

If 1. and 2. are okay please check your settings. Ensure you are using the correct resin profile and settings in your software and then print again.

Important Notes!

  • Always remember to clean your vat thoroughly between every print. Any solid resin in the vat or on the vat film can adversely affect your next print.
Examples of Delamination

When the platform moves down, resin pressure inside a flat, hollow model can force a break in the wall of the model, creating holes.  

Hollow models cannot be printed flat on the platform, they must be placed at an angle.

  1. Lift model up 5-10mm away from the platform.
  2. Position model at a 10-15 degree angle.
Examples of holes in a model

Reasons for lines on your printed model can be:

  1. No screen protector used. Ensure you always use a screen protector on your LCD screen.
  2. Overused vat film. If the same vat film has been used for many prints, the vat film will start to stick more to your print, creating unwanted lines. Cloudy or dirty vat film can also cause indented lines in your model.
Examples of lines on the model

Model falling from build plate

If your model comes off during the print and cannot stick to the build plate, your platform surface may not be rough enough.

To ensure your model sticks to your platform, use sandpaper to roughen the surface of your build plate for better resin adhesion.

Build Plate
Examples of model falling off

Model parts not fitting together

If your printed model parts do not fit together as designed, reduce the exposure time used.

Resin profiles provided by Photocentric are estimates, generic times for most prints. Some models however, will require the exposure time to be reduced for increased accuracy.

Example of model parts not fitting together

Only supports printed

If your printed platform only has supports attached, the support tips are almost certainly too small. You will need to:

  1. Make your supports thicker. Depending on what printer and object you are printing, you will need to increase the thickness of your supports. See recomendations below.

 

Example of only supports printed
LC PRECISION

LC PRECISION

Suggested supports for using the LC Precision for fine details such as fusion style jewellery pieces.

Suggested supports for using the LC Precision for larger surface models such as dental and art applications.

LC HR

LC HR

Suggested supports for using the LC HR for small objects – we recommend to not use thinner support tips than 0.6mm and for edges and fine details, we highly recommend for supports to be added manually.

Suggested supports for using the LC HR for standard and dental parts.

Suggested supports for using the LC HR for big objects and industrial parts, plus using flexible resin.

 

LC PRO

LC PRO

Suggested supports for using the LC Pro – we recommend to print models with a large surface area at an angle of 10 – 45 degrees. 

Squashed model 

If your printed model is squashed or the wrong size, the resolution is not correctly set in your software. To ensure you are using the correct resolution settings for your printer, check the settings below.

Example of Squashed model. (Left correct proportions, right model squashed)
LC PRECISION

LC Precision

LCHR

LC HR

LC PRO

LC PRO

Sticky Model

If your model is sticky after post-curing, the cleaning procedure was not followed correctly. For the correct washing procedure please refer to your full printer User Guide, simply click on your printer below.

To reduce stickiness you will need to thoroughly wash the model again using isopropanol spray or with isopropanol and an ultrasonic cleaner.  

Select your printer to view the full user guide

Supports partly missing 

If some of your supports are missing please check the following: 

  1. Has your vat leaked? If your vat has leaked you will need to clean your display screen and reskin your vat according to your printer Support video and User Manual. If your vat has leaked you can find the printer support links below, otherwise proceed to Step 2.
  2. Are you using the latest resin profiles for your printer? Ensure you have downloaded the latest resin profiles for your printer from our Support page and have selected the correct resin profile in the software before printing. If needed, download the latest resin profiles via the links below. After checking you are using the correct resin profile, proceed to Step 3.  
  3. Are you using enough supports? For the correct support procedure for your printer and model refer to the full User Guide on our support page via the support links below. If you are using the correct number of supports, proceed to Step 4.
  4. Are your supports the right size? Guidance on the correct support size for your printer and model can be found below.
LC PRECISION

LC Precision

Suggested supports for using the LC Precision for fine details such as fusion style jewellery pieces.

Suggested supports for using the LC Precision for larger surface models such as dental and art applications.

LC HR

LC HR

Suggested supports for using the LC HR for small objects – we recommend you do not use support tips thinner than 0.6mm and for edges and fine details, we highly recommend that supports are added manually.

Suggested supports for using the LC HR for standard and dental parts.

Suggested supports for using the LC HR for big objects and industrial parts, plus using flexible resin.

LC Precision

Suggested supports for using the LC Precision for fine details such as fusion style jewellery pieces.

Suggested supports for using the LC Precision for larger surface models such as dental and art applications.

LC PRO

LC PRO

Suggested supports for using the LC Pro – we recommend printing models with a large surface area at an angle of 10 – 45 degrees.

Need to visit the Support page? Select your printer for support videos, full user guide and software downloads. 

Vat Leak 

If your vat film has leaked, you will need to re-skin the vat before printing again. A vat leak on your LCD screen and a damaged vat will adversely affect your print. Please follow our step by step guide:

  1. Remove the vat from the printer and place on absorbent paper. If your vat has been removed and there is no resin on your screen, proceed to Step 3. If there is resin on your screen, proceed to Step 2.
  2. Mop up any liquid resin from your LCD display screen with absorbent tissue and then clean the screen with a damp cloth and detergent.

If you have cured resin on your LCD display screen, remove this by chipping it off with a credit card or plastic scraper. Metal scrapers should only be used with extreme care to avoid scratching the screen.

  1. To reskin your vat, please refer to your printer support Video Tutorial. Find your support page below.
Examples of vat leak

Print Troubleshooting – Warping

Warping is caused when large models are printed flat on the build plate. To avoid warping when printing models with a large surface area, follow the instructions below.

  1. Load your model into Creation Workshop and use the functions to rotate your model to a 45-degree angle.
  2. When printing models at an angle, supports are essential. Manually add supports according to the size of your print and the printer you are using.

Rotating your model and adding supports will not only discourage warping, but will also help to reduce shrinkage.

Examples of print warping

Whiteness on model after post-exposure

Whiteness on your model after post-exposure can be caused by three things:

  1. Insufficient cleaning: Check you are following the correct washing procedure; this can be found in your full printer User Guide on our website – click on your printer below.
  2. Dirty water in post-curing unit. Use clean water in your post-curing unit for every print.
  3. Using MET spirits to clean the model. The best way to clean the model is by spraying or immersing it in IPA alcohol, alternatively, you can wash it in warm soapy water.

Important: – Do not allow the IPA or soapy water to dry on the model, ensure it is thoroughly rinsed with water.

Examples of whitenss on models

Select your printer to view the full user guide