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Beginner - ABS Upgrades - Buy Now or Upgrade later?

Posted by Plumguy 
Beginner - ABS Upgrades - Buy Now or Upgrade later?
May 10, 2016 09:35AM
Greetings! I'm looking to buy a Kossel for PLA and ABS. Is it better/cheaper to get all the ABS extras (heat bed, thermister, etc) initially or add them on later.?

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/10/2016 09:35AM by Plumguy.
Re: Beginner - ABS Upgrades - Buy Now or Upgrade later?
May 10, 2016 09:57AM
It is great that you're asking before you buy!
If you are going to print ABS, here's what you need to know:

1) The bed has to get to about 105C or prints won't stick reliably. Ask the seller if the bed gets that hot and how long it takes to get that hot. Many bed heaters are underpowered and will take 1/2 hour or more to reach that temperature, or never reach it at all. If the heater they supply is less than about 0.4 W/cm^2 of bed area, it is probably going to take a looooong time to heat up to 105C.
2) The extruder needs to run at about 235C.
3) The machine needs to be enclosed and it needs to be warm inside the enclosure - about 45-50C - or your ABS prints that are more than a couple cm tall will delaminate. Is there some provision for enclosing the machine? Is there any provision for adding supplemental heat to the enclosure in case the heat from the bed is insufficient to get to 45-50C in the enclosure?
4) Are there any PLA printed parts in the printer? If they are inside an enclosure at 50C they may soften. That would be bad.

You can modify a printer for ABS relatively easily. In fact, it may be better to DIY because the maker will probably supply an underpowered bed heater. Enclosing the printer can be as easy as putting a box or even a trash bag or two over it, but if you're serious about ABS printing you will probably want to do something more permanent and convenient (hinged doors, etc.). Supplemental heat can be added using a second-hand hair dryer or almost any other heater type appliance, but again, if you're serious about ABS, you'll want a more permanent arrangement with temperature regulation and that will cost a little (not a lot).

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 05/10/2016 09:59AM by the_digital_dentist.


Son of MegaMax 3D printer: [www.instructables.com]
Ultra MegaMax Dominator 3D printer: [drmrehorst.blogspot.com]
Re: Beginner - ABS Upgrades - Buy Now or Upgrade later?
May 10, 2016 10:03AM
Get them with the printer, the manufacturer buys the parts in bulk and it cost them a lot less that what will cost you to add them later, Unless (and there are some cases) the difference in price exceed $30.00-40.00 at which point it will be cheaper for you to get them.
Re: Beginner - ABS Upgrades - Buy Now or Upgrade later?
May 10, 2016 11:46AM
Do you really need to use ABS? PETG has about the same strength properties without the warping issue ABS has.
Re: Beginner - ABS Upgrades - Buy Now or Upgrade later?
May 10, 2016 03:19PM
Quote
ElmoC
Do you really need to use ABS? PETG has about the same strength properties without the warping issue ABS has.

Was about to say the same thing. Just started looking into different filaments and while you likely will benefit from printing PETG on a heated bed, it doesn't have the smell of ABS and won't need the enclosed chamber (can be hard to do on a delta).

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/10/2016 03:19PM by Kurzaa.
Re: Beginner - ABS Upgrades - Buy Now or Upgrade later?
May 10, 2016 09:04PM
Largely agree with DD.... however in my view the bed heater should get the bed to 110c inside 10 minutes preferable quicker and on a smaller machine even with basic enclosure setup should provide enough radiant heat for an enclosed space for most ABS stuff.
Personally I run my nozzle temperate at the high end for ABS filament to ensure a solid layer bond and the enclosed printer general hovers around 35c depending on the ambient temp in the garage.
I do disagree that supplementary heating is needed on small volume build spaces and I have well over 4000 hours of ABS printing time under the belt. However for larger build spaces it does become mandatory.
Re: Beginner - ABS Upgrades - Buy Now or Upgrade later?
May 10, 2016 09:17PM
Not 100% sold on ABS, still reading about the pros, cons and specs of the various materials.
Re: Beginner - ABS Upgrades - Buy Now or Upgrade later?
May 10, 2016 09:35PM
Quote
Plumguy
Not 100% sold on ABS, still reading about the pros, cons and specs of the various materials.

A few years back, there was pretty much either PLA or ABS to use. There are now so many other choices available to use instead of ABS that with all the problems printing with it, I wouldn't be surprised if in a few years time, it will be the exotic filament that very few people print with. Just my view on the future of ABS.
Re: Beginner - ABS Upgrades - Buy Now or Upgrade later?
May 11, 2016 12:39AM
Whilst ABS remains very much a cheap filament in comparison to things like PETG in various countries ( in my case Australia) it will remain a popular choice.... a huge pro is the easy glue joining of ABS parts and if your into painting parts then normal automotive paint techniques work really well.

if PET/PETG was the same price I'd likely use it but at double what I buy ABS for it's just not going to happen.
Re: Beginner - ABS Upgrades - Buy Now or Upgrade later?
May 11, 2016 05:34AM
Quote
ElmoC
Do you really need to use ABS? PETG has about the same strength properties without the warping issue ABS has.
Someone had the same "fun" with PETG as with ABS [forums.reprap.org] grinning smiley
Re: Beginner - ABS Upgrades - Buy Now or Upgrade later?
May 16, 2016 09:50PM
i have never used abs as I find PETG works well without a heated bed and prints around 215 - 220 c and never use my heatbed
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