Kapton 'Polyamide' Tape - What's the skinny?

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MakerMike7
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Kapton 'Polyamide' Tape - What's the skinny?

Post by MakerMike7 » Wed Aug 27, 2014 3:41 am

As a first week newbie I'm having great luck with PLA. However I need some white parts and ordered ABS White with my printer. I've seen the prep on Kapton tape but had a few questions?

1) How much usage can the tape take (parts over time) etc... before it needs to be replaced?
2) Is it hard to remove once many parts have been printed?... I.E. I just ordered some more glass as I figured I'd have one for PLA, A Kapton coated one for ABS and maybe a separate one if I get into Nylon.
or, Can I get away with applying it when needed and removing when not....


I saw the 70C recommendation for PLA with Kapton, but I having such great luck with bare glass & Aquanet... honestly I only need the Kapton for ABS

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jimc
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Re: Kapton 'Polyamide' Tape - What's the skinny?

Post by jimc » Wed Aug 27, 2014 5:31 am

you only need kapton for the abs. you need a light coating of melted abs in acetone to put on the kapton. the regular thin kapton tape i found it be pretty much good for one print. after that just yank it and put fresh down. there is kapton out there that is much thicker and last for many prints but its rather expensive. i think it was close to 35-40 bucks a sheet. it just takes a min to swap it out. when taking my prints off the bed it always gets damaged somehow. if it doesnt then you can reuse. for the most part though i print abs on hairspray. if i have a part i need max hold with then i move to the kapton.

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Re: Kapton 'Polyamide' Tape - What's the skinny?

Post by jsc » Wed Aug 27, 2014 6:37 am

I've found Kapton to be less useful than a stick of Elmer's. Although jimc has had a different experience, so your mileage may vary....

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jimc
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Re: Kapton 'Polyamide' Tape - What's the skinny?

Post by jimc » Wed Aug 27, 2014 12:50 pm

I would have to agree jin with kapton by itself. If you put the slurry on it man is that a good bond. I did buy a different glue stick and give it another go. It did work better but still fell into a category under hairspray somewhere. I still havent given up though. I havent had a chance to use my printer in about a week or so.when get back to it i am going to try again.

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Levi8than
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Re: Kapton 'Polyamide' Tape - What's the skinny?

Post by Levi8than » Wed Aug 27, 2014 5:24 pm

At first I thought the kapton tape was a pain to put on. Then somebody pointed me to the soap + water solution. Take a bowl of warm water with a few drops of dawn mixed in it, cut your tape to length, then run it through the soapy water. While it is wet, you can move it around on the glass to position it perfectly. Once in place, use a credit card or some other hard plastic to walk the bubbles out the side of the tape. Do this for each piece of tape until your bed is covered. Then place your glass on your printer and let it heat up slowly. I usually go to 70C and let it sit there for a about 5-10 minutes before going higher. And as the temperature rises, keep pressing the bubbles out. Once you reach the 97-100C or so you'll be wanting to print at, all of the bubbles should be gone and your kapton tape should now be stuck to your print surface.

But I'm also with Jim on the hairpsray. Hairspray is just so convenient that I don't find much need for kapton.

But steer clear of the abs slurry. That's just asking for a mess. Yes, it applies and prints perfectly. But if you you try to do a second application before removing the first you end up with stalagmites growing on your print bed, and it just turns into a mess. Also, it's rare that your abs slurry is going to be the same color as your print.

MakerMike7
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Re: Kapton 'Polyamide' Tape - What's the skinny?

Post by MakerMike7 » Wed Aug 27, 2014 8:46 pm

Great and thanks for the answers. I'm having awesome luck with Hairspray and PLA. I wasn't aware that you could get away with hairspray and ABS.

So just to confirm, some of you are using bare glass + hairspray and printing ABS correct?

If so what is the bed temperature?

Thanks in advance, I love this forum and my new M2!

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jimc
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Re: Kapton 'Polyamide' Tape - What's the skinny?

Post by jimc » Wed Aug 27, 2014 9:03 pm

Bare glass and hairspray is fine. I do my first layer at 96 then drop to 90 on layer 2 and up. Hairspray gets sifter the hotter it gets so i feel there is a slightly mire solid bond dropping to 90. Many people run hit at 110 or so but i have seen no advantage to this. I actually get worse results at high bet temps like that. If you need a stronger hairspray you cam use the garnier fructise #5. Its mych stronger than aquanet

dbkarmann
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Re: Kapton 'Polyamide' Tape - What's the skinny?

Post by dbkarmann » Wed Aug 27, 2014 11:07 pm

ive tried everything with abs and once i tried gluestick i have never looked back. Its quick and easy. apply to a cold piece of glass. not thick just a swipe all over the glass you can barely see you put anything on. i touch it up between prints. cleanup is a breeze it washes off easily whenever you need to wash it which is not often. just let the glass cool after the print and you will hear it pop off. i have had perfectly flat prints. also, i do keep my printer in a closet to avoid drafts and keep the area around the printer warm.

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jdacal
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Re: Kapton 'Polyamide' Tape - What's the skinny?

Post by jdacal » Thu Aug 28, 2014 2:18 am

dbkarmann wrote:ive tried everything with abs and once i tried gluestick i have never looked back. Its quick and easy. apply to a cold piece of glass. not thick just a swipe all over the glass you can barely see you put anything on. i touch it up between prints. cleanup is a breeze it washes off easily whenever you need to wash it which is not often. just let the glass cool after the print and you will hear it pop off. i have had perfectly flat prints. also, i do keep my printer in a closet to avoid drafts and keep the area around the printer warm.
Same here. I haven't had a problem with PLA or ABS since I started using the Elmer's Glue Stick (the one with the dissappearing purple color). I've been printing some huge stuff lately and its just been like a dream.

The best part is it comes off with hot water if you don't feel like breaking out the alcohol. You let the hot water from the sink run over it for a few minutes and the glass ends up squeaky clean. I do three coats. One coat in the direction of Y axis, next coat x axis and then another y axis. 60 degrees for PLA, 110 degrees for ABS.

A combination of the glue stick and lots of other tips on this forum have made my life very easy. I did my first .10 print a couple of days ago, that was only a dream a few weeks ago. :)

So far the forum has solved my bed adhesion problem, my ghosting problem, my over extrusion under extrusion problem and lots of other stuff (I still have some work on that but much better). Thanks to all of you!
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Re: Kapton 'Polyamide' Tape - What's the skinny?

Post by benavery » Thu Aug 28, 2014 4:50 am

+1 for elmers glue. I inititally never bothered as it sounds too silly - that if all these fancy kapton / abs slurry / etc methods couldn't hold - there is no way that kids craft glue could. But have been pleasantly surprised - seems as good, or better than abs slurry.

Make sure you only put it down then the glass is cold, to get a super thin, nice even layer. If you forget, then put it down with the bed heated, the gluestick melts everywhere as you apply it and you get a goopy mess.


Also, my completely untested theory with kapton, is that when its fresh - its too smooth to hold well, but after a few uses, the surface gets roughed up a little bit, and it has more grippiness. I would bet that you get slightly better hold by lightly running a scouring pad or something lightly abrasive over it a bit to just take the edge off the smoothness.

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