When it comes to 3D printing, many people have issues with getting prints to stick to the print bed, but there is an issue on the opposite side.
That is prints that stick too well to the print bed, or just won’t come off the bed at all. In instances where prints are really stuck down, there are ways to fix this.
To fix 3D prints sticking too well, you should get a flexible print bed make sure your print bed is clean you should ensure your first layer doesn’t squish to the bed too strong, test different bed temperatures, and use an adhesive substance on the build surface.
There are more details about fixing prints that stick to the bed too much, so keep on reading to find out how to fix this problem once and for all.
Why Do 3D Prints Stick Too Well to the Print Bed?
The different reasons which cause 3D prints to stick too well to the print bed are listed below. This is not the final list, but after careful research, I have listed the most common reasons
- Not using adhesives on your print bed
- Using the wrong print bed surface
- Poorly levelled bed or bad first layers
- Not taking advantage of temperature differences
- Not using a raft or brim
How to Fix 3D Prints Sticking to the Bed Too Much?
There are many ways through which you can solve the sticking problem of the 3D prints.
I am going to list all the ways through which you can prevent your print from sticking too well to the bed, or you can use these ways to remove the stuck print from the bed.
1. Choose the Right Adhesive Material
The first thing I would look towards when your 3D prints are sticking to the bed a little too well is the adhesive material.
The reason 3D prints stick to the bed too much is because there is a strong bond between the two materials, mixed in with the temperature. I’ve seen videos where PETG prints have formed almost permanent bonds to a glass bed.
What you want to do is use an adhesive material which prevents that direct bond from happening, so there is something between the filament and your build surface.
Many people have different techniques and adhesive substances they use, but as long as they work well, then I don’t see the problem!
The usual adhesive substances people use are:
- Glue stick
- Blue Painter’s Tape
- Hair spray
- Specialized 3D printer adhesives
- ABS slurry (a mixture of ABS filament and acetone)
- Some people just clean their print bed and adhesion works great!
BuildTak is a sheet which sticks down on top of your print bed for better adhesion, especially when it comes to PLA and other similar materials. I’ve heard some really advanced materials do great with BuildTak, although it can be quite premium.
2. Change in Bed Surface Required
The next thing to look into when your 3D prints stick too much to your print bed is the bed surface itself. As previously mentioned, the glass build plate and PETG combination hasn’t ended well for some.
Using the right build surface with your main printing material is a great way to stop 3D prints sticking to the bed too much. I would advise using some kind of textures surface rather than a glass one, because the texture gives 3D prints space to be removed.
Some bed surfaces are great in the fact that they can release 3D prints after they cool down.
Another good aspect of some bed surface is the flexible build plates which can be removed, ‘flexed’ then you watch your 3D print pop off the surface with ease.
You are very unlikely to get a 3D print stick too well to a build surface with a magnetic flexible build plate.
Bed surfaces to try out for good adhesion:
- Magnetic flexible build surface
- PEI build surface
- BuildTak sheet
- Borosilicate glass
It can take some trial and error, or researching the best build plates that are really working for other people. I would go with the tried and tested magnetic flexible build plate for your 3D printing needs.
I’m sure with this, it should fix your problem of prints sticking too well to the bed.
3. Getting Proper First Layer and Bed Calibration
The first layer has a big impact on your 3D prints sticking to the bed too well. The reason behind this is that the perfect first layer is one that doesn’t press down too deep into the print bed, nor does it get laid down softly.
The perfect first layer is one which extrudes down gently on the build surface with a bit of pressure to carefully stick down.
The important thing is getting the right level of your print bed.
- Take your time to get your bed accurately leveled on each side and the middle
- Heat up your build plate before leveling so you can account for warping and bending
- Many people use thin card or a piece of paper like a post-it note below the nozzle for leveling
- You should put your paper underneath your nozzle on each corner and be able to wiggle it for good levelling.
- Get high quality leveling springs or silicone columns under your print bed so it stays in place for longer
Getting a BLTouch or auto-leveling system is a great way to improve your bed calibration and first layer. This increases your chances of 3D prints not sticking so hard to the print bed.
4. Create a Temperature Difference Between the Print & Bed
When your 3D prints are hard to remove from the print bed, a good tool you can use is being able to create differences in temperature. A lot of the time, being able to contrast hot and cold temperatures is enough to get a 3D print removed from the bed.
- Try adjusting your bed temperature, lowering it if prints stick down too well
- You can actually remove your build surface and place it in the freezer for prints to pop off
- Sometimes even using water mixed with isopropyl alcohol in a spray bottle on your print can do the trick
5. First Layer Printing Too Slow or Bad Height
When the first layer is printing at a slow speed, it is actually depositing more material at a single place, making a thick first layer. Similarly, if the printing is too fast, it won’t stick properly.
Sometimes people have situations where their 3D prints aren’t sticking well to the build surface, so they would want a thicker first layer extruded, by slowing it down and increasing the flow rate.
With 3D prints that stick too well, doing the opposite is what is going to work better.
- Make adjustments to first layer settings such as speed & first layer width or flow rate
- Do some trial and error testing to figure out the best settings for your first layer
6. Use a Raft or Brim on your 3D Prints
If you are still experiencing your 3D prints sticking too well to the bed surface, using a raft or brim is a great idea to increase the surface area of your 3D prints, which allows more leverage to remove the object.
You can adjust the specific settings as you wish:
- With the brim, you can adjust the minimum brim length, brim width, brim line count and more
- With the raft, you can adjust several settings such as top layers, top layer thickness, extra margin, smoothing, fan speed, print speed etc.
Raft – goes underneath the actual 3D print.
Brim – goes around the edge of the 3D print.
How Do You Remove 3D Prints Stuck Down Too Much to the Bed?
The method in the video below is very effective for removing 3D prints which are stuck to the print bed. You are making use of a thin, flexible spatula and a blunt object to apply small amounts of pressure to get underneath the print.
Use Physical Force
Use your hands first and try twisting and turning the material to get it off the print bed. Secondly, you can use a rubber mallet but with extreme carefulness and strike it gently on the sides.
Use a Flat Object or Removal Tool
Try using a flat and a sharp object such as a spatula to get underneath the 3D print that is stuck down on the bed.
You can then slowly bend the spatula upwards and diagonally to try and weaken the bond between the 3D print and the bed.
Use Floss to Remove the 3D Print
You can use a floss too for this purpose and can remove a 3D print stuck on the bed easily.
Implement a Flexible Build Platform and ‘Flex’ it Off
Try to get a flexible build platform that can help you in bending the platform to take off the 3D print. Some of the build platforms are available online by Zebra Printer Plates and Fleks3D.
If you followed the information in the article, you should be well on your way to solving the issue of 3D prints sticking too well to your print bed.