Kapton Tape

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Kapton Tape

Vitamin

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Electrically insulating heat resistant polyimide tape.
Wikipedia Kapton Tape

Kapton Tape, also known as Polyimide Tape, is an electrically insulating heat resistant tape that has many uses for Reprap:

  • Insulation/fastening
    Kapton tape is well suited for fastening heating elements. As such, it's the material of choice for fastening heating wire to the heater barrel of an extruder such as the Mendel extruder. For example, the Casainho extruder uses Kapton tape. Kapton can also be used to tape the temperature sensor to the printhead/extruder.
  • Print surface
    Kapton tape is a good print surface for priting ABS on a Heated Bed. For ABS to stick to Kapton the Kapton needs to be hot (different sources mention minimum temperatures between 80-130 °C). Also the Kapton should be free of grease, grease can be removed with acetone or a propane torch. However, test your Kapton for fire resistance first!
  • Anti-friction
    Peter is doing some research at using Kapton as a low-friction film, as an alternative to lubrication. See his blog post and about page.

Contents

Safety Risk

Polyimide has excellent heat resisting properties, however it has limits. In the event of excess temperature, even in very small areas such as caused by electrical sparks, the tape can burn fast enough to resemble a small explosion. Make sure everything is well insulated and secured!

Test your tape for fire resistance before using it. Testing can be done in an oven or with a soldering iron. I know mine won't burn (North90ty).

Fake Kapton

Real Kapton is expensive, and fake Kapton tape is offered on Ebay for less money. This fake tape might work well; I have a roll of tape labelled "Kapter" which works fine. However, test the heat resistance of your tape before using it!

The 6mm fake Kapton I purchased from Ebay I tried on a 45 watt soldering iron at full heat and the tape never smoked or melted but it did show some signs of stretching when I pulled it taut over the soldering iron tip. - Dark Alchemist

Vendors

These vendors currently provide tape suitable for Reprap projects:

Vendor (shipping location) Product Width Length Thickness Heat resistance Additional notes
3D Acessories Hub(IN) Kapton Tape 15 mm 33 m      
3D Maker World (US) 3M PET Tape 2in x 72yrd 2 in (50.8 mm) 72 yd (65.8 m) 3.2 mil (2.0 mil polyester backing and 1.2 mil silicone adhesive) 400°F (204°C)  
3D Maker World (US) 3M PET Tape 4in x 72yrd 4 in (101.6 mm) 72 yd (65.8 m) 3.2 mil (2.0 mil polyester backing and 1.2 mil silicone adhesive) 400°F (204°C)  
3D Maker World (US) Kapton Tape 6" x 100' 6 in (152 mm) 100 ft (30.5 m) 2.2 mil (film thickness: 0.025mm, adhesive thickness: 0.030mm) 536°F (280°C)  
3D Maker World (US) Kapton Tape 12" x 100' 12 in (305 mm) 100 ft (30.5 m) 2.2 mil (film thickness: 0.025mm, adhesive thickness: 0.030mm) 536°F (280°C)  
3DPartistry (USA) 3DPartistryKaptonTape 10 mm 33 m 0.06mm 260 °C USA. High quality Kapton Tapes. Free shipping over 65$. Also has 3D Printing filaments.  
3DPartistry (USA) 3DPartistryKaptonTape 20 mm 33 m 0.06mm 260 °C USA. High quality Kapton Tapes. Free shipping over 65$. Also has 3D Printing filaments.  
3DPartistry (USA) 3DPartistryKaptonTape 50 mm 33 m 0.06mm 260 °C USA. High quality Kapton Tapes. Free shipping over 65$. Also has 3D Printing filaments.  
3DPartistry (USA) 3DPartistryKaptonTape 130 mm 33 m 0.06mm 260 °C USA. High quality Kapton Tapes. Free shipping over 65$. Also has 3D Printing filaments.  
3DPartistry (USA) 3DPartistryKaptonTape 220 mm 33 m 0.06mm 260 °C USA. High quality Kapton Tapes. Free shipping over 65$. Also has 3D Printing filaments.  
3DPartistry (USA) 3DPartistryKaptonTape 310 mm 33 m 0.06mm 260 °C USA. High quality Kapton Tapes. Free shipping over 65$. Also has 3D Printing filaments.  
3DPartistry (USA) 3DPartistryKaptonTape 10 mm 33 m 0.08mm 260 °C USA. High quality Kapton Tapes. Free shipping over 65$. Also has 3D Printing filaments.  
3DPartistry (USA) 3DPartistryKaptonTape 20 mm 33 m 0.08mm 260 °C USA. High quality Kapton Tapes. Free shipping over 65$. Also has 3D Printing filaments.  
3DPartistry (USA) 3DPartistryKaptonTape 50 mm 33 m 0.08mm 260 °C USA. High quality Kapton Tapes. Free shipping over 65$. Also has 3D Printing filaments.  
3DPartistry (USA) 3DPartistryKaptonTape 130 mm 33 m 0.08mm 260 °C USA. High quality Kapton Tapes. Free shipping over 65$. Also has 3D Printing filaments.  
3DPartistry (USA) 3DPartistryKaptonTape 220 mm 33 m 0.08mm 260 °C USA. High quality Kapton Tapes. Free shipping over 65$. Also has 3D Printing filaments.  
3DPartistry (USA) 3DPartistryKaptonTape 310 mm 33 m 0.08mm 260 °C USA. High quality Kapton Tapes. Free shipping over 65$. Also has 3D Printing filaments.  
3D Printer Czar(US & HK) Kapton Tape 15 mm 33m   280 °C  
3D Printing Center Israel (Israel) Kapton Tape 155,200 mm 33m 0.06mm    
BestOfferBuy (US) Polyimide Tape 8 mm 33 m   260 °C  
BestOfferBuy (US) Polyimide Tape 15 mm 33 m   260 °C  
Charlie's 3D Technologies (BE) Kapton Tape 200 mm 33 m   280 °C  
DealExtreme (HK) Polyimide Heat Resistant Tape 24 mm 33 m   260 °C Might provide fake Kapton, see below.
EckerTech (CA) Kapton Tape sheet 254 mm 228 mm 5 mil    
EckerTech (CA) Kapton Tape sheet 304 mm 228 mm 5 mil    
Filaments.ca (CA) Kapton Tape Polyimide Tape 20 mm 33 m   280 °C Canadian. Also provides filaments, raw materials and other accessories.
Filaments.ca (CA) Kapton Tape Polyimide Tape 130 mm 33 m   280 °C Canadian. Also provides filaments, raw materials and other accessories.
Filaments.ca (CA) Kapton Tape Polyimide Tape 220 mm 33 m   280 °C Canadian. Also provides filaments, raw materials and other accessories.
Filaments.ca (CA) Kapton Tape Polyimide Tape 310 mm 33 m   280 °C Canadian. Also provides filaments, raw materials and other accessories.
Filament Webshop Kapton (also Aluminum Foil/PET/Mylar) Tapes 24 mm (Aluminum Foil tape 60mm) 330 mm   260 °C Also provides filament.
KaptonTapeOnline.com (US) Kapton Tape 1-15 mm 32 m 1 mil 260 °C  
KaptonTapeOnline.com (US) Kapton Tape 6-76 mm 32 m 2 mil 260 °C  
KaptonTapeOnline.com (US) Kapton Tape 6-76 mm 32 m 5 mil 260 °C  
Makemendel (IN) Kapton Tape 15 mm 33 m      
Makemendel (IN) Kapton Tape 50 mm 33 m      
MakerFarm (US) SuperWide Kapton Tape 120 mm 33 m      
Marketbot (US) Kapton Tape 6 mm 32 m   260 °C  
Marketbot (US) Kapton Tape 20 mm 32 m      
Marketbot (US) SuperWide Kapton Tape 120 mm 22 m      
McMaster (US) Kapton Polyimide Tape 6-150 mm        
McMaster (US) Kapton Polyimide Sheets 305 mm 305 mm      
Mendel Parts (NL) Kapton Tape 50 mm 33 m      
Mendel Parts (NL) Kapton Tape 25 mm 33 m   400 °C  
Mendel Parts (NL) Kapton Tape 13 mm 33 m   400 °C  
Paoparts (FR) Adhésif Polyimide 50 mm 33 m 2 mil    
ProtoParadigm (US) Polyimide Tape 10 mm 20 m 1 mil 260 °C  
ProtoParadigm (US) Polyimide Tape 20 mm 20 m 1 mil 260 °C  
ProtoParadigm (US) Polyimide Tape 130 mm 20 m 1 mil 260 °C  
ProtoParadigm (US) Polyimide Tape 220 mm 20 m 1 mil 260 °C  
ProtoParadigm (US) Polyimide Tape 310 mm 20 m 1 mil 260 °C  
ReprapUniverse.com (Netherlands) Polyimide Heat Resistant Tape (PET) 50 mm 66 m 80µm 220°C / 428°F High Quality PET Tape from tesa®. Ideal for ABS/PLA. Cheap International Shipping.
ReprapUniverse.com (Netherlands) Kapton Tape 8 mm 33 m   280°C / 536°F High Quality Kapton Tape. Ideal for insulating HotEnd's like the J-Head Hotend. Cheap International Shipping.
ReprapUniverse.com (Netherlands) Kapton Tape 50 mm 33 m   280°C / 536°F High Quality Kapton Tape. Cheap International Shipping.
RobotDigg (CN) Kapton Tape 100 mm 30 m 0.06mm 260 °C  
The Masking Shop (UK) Polyimide Tape 3-250 mm 33 m      
Thingibox (ES) Kapton Tape 20 mm 33 m   400ºC Dupont Kapton HN Tape
RepRap-India.com (IN) Kapton Tape 12-50 mm 33 m   400 °C  

DealExtreme

People have claimed DealExtreme provides fake Kapton, or to not have received their product. This was taken from a previous edit, it's worth a second look per satisfied customers below.

That said, I have Deal-Extreme-Kapton and it withstands a soldering iron.
--Traumflug 10:32, 30 September 2011 (UTC)
Second that. I have nothing but good experience with the (4-5 rolls, different widths) "kapton" I've bought from dealextreme.
--Nudel 01:03, 1 October 2011 (UTC)

Dupont

Dupont makes several types of Kapton tape. The standard Kapton HN works up to 400 °C and has a coefficient of thermal conductivity of 0.12 W/mK.

External References