There are many options when it comes to 3D printer bed adhesives, and it can start to get people confused on what they should be using. This article is going to try and simplify your options to narrow down what you should make use of.
You can choose from different glue sticks, hairsprays, mixtures like ABS slurry, types of tape to stick down to your print bed, or even print surfaces that have great adhesion by themselves.
Keep reading through this article for some great products and tips throughout.
What is the Best Adhesive/Glue to Use for 3D Printer Beds?
Elmer’s disappearing glue stick is the leading brand to use for 3D beds because of its easy and hassle-free bonding. The glue formula is purple, but it dries transparently while ensuring a strong bond.
As this glue dries fast, stays smooth, and provides strong adhesion, it can be used in various 3D printing projects.
Elmer’s disappearing glue stick is non-toxic, acid-free, safe, and easily washable. You can trust its quality for all of your 3D printing projects without any doubt.
- Easy to use
- No mess bonding
- Easy to see where glue has been applied
- Dries clear
- Non-toxic and safe
- Washable and dissolves with water
A user shared his experience stating that the factor of having purple color while applying and then drying transparent is a great help in 3D printing.
It helped him a lot especially when it comes to ensuring effective coverage of the whole print bed. Its strong adhesion also allowed him to use only a thin layer to get the job done.
Get some Elmer’s Disappearing Glue Stick from Amazon today.
How to Use Glue Stick for 3D Printer Bed Adhesion
- Make sure your bed is leveled properly before applying the glue
- Heat up your build surface
- Start from the top corner from your bed and apply the glue in long downward motions to the other end
- Use reasonable pressure, so you don’t apply the glue unevenly
- Let the glue dry for a minute to see a matte finish and start your printing process.
What is the Best Spray/Hairspray to Use for 3D Printer Build Surfaces?
Different hair sprays are widely used for 3D printer build surfaces but L’Oréal Paris Advanced Hairspray is considered one of the best.
It offers an extremely strong bond for your 3D prints. This anti-humidity hairspray can be applied evenly and dries extremely fast.
When it comes to ease of use, you cannot beat a hair spray because you only have to spray the print bed, and you are ready to go.
- Humidity resistant
- String adhesion properties
- Pleasant odor
- Easy to use
A user stated in his feedback that he has been using this to spray his hair for a long time but when he read that it can be used in 3D printing, he decided to give it a try.
Using this hairspray changed his way of working as it can be applied easily, provide strong adhesion, and bring amazing results with most of the 3D printer filaments.
One thing to keep in mind is that it is highly flammable so keep it away from direct fire or flames.
Check out the L’Oréal Paris Advanced Hairstyle Lock It Bold Control Hairspray on Amazon.
How to Use Hairspray for 3D Printer Bed Adhesion
- Give your bed surface a wipe with a sterile pad, isopropyl alcohol or a good surface cleaner
- Dry the bed surface with a paper towel – make sure not to touch the top surface with your fingers
- Heat up the print bed to your desired temperature
- Get your hairspray and apply short, even sprays across the bed surface
- Some people recommend putting your can of hairspray under warm water before spraying – to provide a finer mist
What is the Best Adhesion Tape to Use for Your Build Platform?
ScotchBlue Original Painter’s Tape is the one of the best adhesion tapes to use for your build platform.
This blue tape offers strong adhesion to the print bed no matter whether you are using ABS or PLA. Some filament bonds to build surfaces really strongly, making it hard to remove, so with the painter’s tape, it provides an extra surface to reduce that bond.
Once your model has finished printing on the build plate, it is a lot easier to remove in comparison to without.
The tape is easy to use and remove as well because of its 6.25 inches width. This width allows you to put a piece of this tape on a large part of your print bed instead of cutting and pasting various 1-inch parts of adhesion tape.
For almost all types of the commonly used print bed, only a small piece of this tape will be enough for your whole print.
- Adheres well to the print bed
- Easy print removal
- Easy to apply and remove
- Leave no residues behind
One of the users says that he used this blue tape while printing PLA, ABS, and PETG and got the expected results. It adheres well and is easy to use.
Another reviewer of this product says “for 3D printing, I’ll never not use this product” because its very effective, and you can even use the same tape over again until it rips.
The tape being so wide means that it doesn’t take many runs over the build surface to cover the whole thing.
You can check out this amazing ScotchBlue Original Painter’s Tape on Amazon.
How to Use Painter’s Tape for 3D Printer Bed Adhesion
- Simply take some tape and place the roll at the top of the bed surface
- Unroll the tape to cover the bed from top to bottom and repeat until the whole bed is covered
- It should be done sticky side down onto the bed.
How Do You Increase Bed Adhesion?
Although there are many minor to major techniques and settings that can increase the bed adhesion but the most beneficial are listed below. You can enhance bed adhesion if you:
- Clean the Build Plate to Remove Dirt and Residues
- Level the Build Plate Perfectly
- Alter and Adjust the Cooling Fan Speed
- Calibrate Nozzle and Printing Temperature
- Take Help from 3D Printer Brims and Rafts
- Configure and Calibrate First Layers Settings
- Use 3D Printer Bed Adhesives
Best Print Bed Adhesion for 3D Printing ABS
There are many options when it comes to getting the best bed plate adhesion for your ABS 3D prints. Most of these options work well, so you can choose between them depending on what works for you.
- Glue Sticks
- ABS Slurry/Juice
- Painter’s Tape
- Using a PEI bed surface
The video below shows you how to make the famous “ABS Slurry” that many people mention for getting good adhesion for ABS. It’s simply a mixture of ABS filament dissolved in acetone, until the consistency is fairly thick (like yogurt).
3D Printing Glue Stick Vs Hairspray – Which is Better?
Both glue stick and hairspray can provide you with successful adhesion for your 3D prints to the print bed, but people wonder which is better.
Many people who have tried both say that hairspray tends to bring more success overall, especially with surfaces like borosilicate glass and ABS filament.
Glue sticks can stick a little too well for PLA on glass surfaces, especially if it is a larger 3D print.
Other people mention that using Elmer’s Disappearing Glue provided the best results to get rid of warping issues, allowing them to go from using rafts and brims to just skirts.
Hairspray is really easy to clean compared to glue. A simple wash with hot water should take the layer of hairspray and doesn’t chunk together like glue does.
Some people said that hairspray can be messy, too liquid, and annoying to clean off, but this depends on what type of hairspray you are getting as not all brands are the same.
One user who uses hairspray said that they spray their before a 3D print and only washes it off after around 10 prints, so you can really make life easier once you use the right product and know the proper process.
When you look at other people’s experiences with glue sticks and hairspray, the general idea seems to be that hairspray is cleaner, easier to clean and re-apply, and lasts more 3D prints before needing to apply another coat.
Glue can be pretty messy, and for one person who does time lapses, glue doesn’t look too great, especially on glass.
When you hear the experience of one user, they say “hairspray on a glass bed is pure magic”.
Using a PEI Bed Surface for 3D Print Adhesion
PEI sheets are adhesive plastic sheet material that is specially designed to bear the heat cycles of 3D printing. Gizmo Dork’s PEI Sheet from Amazon is a very popular and well-loved product in the 3D printing community.
These sheets adhere well to the print bed while allowing you to print models of your interest.
PEI sheets don’t require any constant cleaning, maintenance, chemical adhesives, and provide a smooth fine print that can be removed easily.