BlueTape

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Blue Tape a painters masking tape found most commonly in US hardware stores or painting supply stores. It comes in several widths, but is commonly found in 3" and 4" rolls.

It's possible that the blue part is trademarked or copy-written by 3M, because apparently in Denmark, masking tape is Yellow. The most recomerd bluetape ist the "Scotch 3M Blue Tape 2090"

The important part is not the color, but the low tack and the surface texture.

PLA and ABS have both been tested to stick very well and separate easily, even with raftless prints. When used with a heated platform, Blue Tape does become more brittle, but even at heats of 120C with material extruded at 240C, we have not seen it burst into flames.

Contents

Comparison with other build platform surfaces

Polyimide tape/film

  • Blue tape does not produce as clean of a finish as Polyimide tape/films, but it is much more affordable and widely available.

Acrylic

  • Blue tape does not stick to parts as well as acrylic which is good because parts are easier to remove but also means that parts may prematurely separate from the build platform more easily unless you take measures in software to prevent it (such as slowing the bottom layer in skeinforge for raft-less prints, etc).
  • Blue tape can be applied to non-plastic surfaces so unlike acrylic blue tape can be used in such a way that build platform warping is not an issue.

Yellow Tape

  • Yellow tesa 4840 masking tape is made of a thermoplast, has a textured surface and works very good with PLA even without preheating. It can be used several times and can be easily removed.

Blue Schuller 4549 Tape is also based on a thermoplast, but has a different structure and a much smoother surface. it works as emergency replacement for yellow tesa, but printd don not stick that good - even if it is preheated. it works good as a layer underneath the tesa, because it sticks very good and provides a surface from which the tesa can be removed easily.