This plate is perfect for PLA. But it’s also certified for ABS, PETG, HIPS and PMMA. But as I only use PLA and Polysmooth (which I print as PLA), I can’t speak for any of these other materials. But I have no reason to think it wouldn’t work for them as well.
This plate is carbon fibre caught in resin. The theory is that when the plate is heated and the print starts, the PLA will grip it quite strongly, and will not be moved. But when the plate has cooled after the print it done, it will have shrunk a little bit and broken the grip of the PLA and the print will almost pop off the plate by itself.
Let me tell you that the theory is 100% true; it does all that! When printing the model stays on the plate. If you try to take it of while the plate is still heated, you will need a lot of force to get it off. Like a mallet or a hammer (I have used both in the part to get prints off when I was inpatient 😉 ). Once it’s cold, it’s like the print was never gripping anything; you can just pick it up and go the next step of your process.
My first plate (now in use nearly 2 years with near continuous printing) is a 1.5mm thick one and it is in my Ultimaker 2+ Ex. I don’t take it out, because I can’t reach the clamps holding the plate in place. That is the only reason it stays put. It can be take out and it can be flexed enough to pop the print off. But by some one who reach the clamps more easily ;).
I could never make printing clean glass work consistently enough that I’d risk a 25 hour print in an expensive material. And that was just the kind of project I bought my Ultimaker for in the first place. Using glue sticks was very hit and miss and I’m not letting any type of spray can into the house. Printing on blue tape in a $3000+ machine is ridiculous, IMHO, and not without continuing costs either. Ditto for buildtec and any other stick-on based consumables. The moment I discovered the Carbon plate as a solution, and found out that it’s not sticky or smelly and it doesn’t wear out, I was sold.
Turns out that getting that first carbon plate was the best thing I ever did, even if the price tag was €100 (incl shipping) at the time, 2 years ago. It was worth every cent; no more sticky messes, no more worries. Now, if I want to do a 67 hour print, all I have to worry about is whether or not I have enough filament on the roll to complete the print or whether I have to order extra. It’s heaven!
And when I bought the CL260, now two weeks ago, the very first thing I did was measure the buildplate and order a carbon plate to fit for it. And I found a cheaper place to order from too 😀
My first plate came from 3dprinterstore24.de
They have the 1.5mm thick plates and they have 4 colors. If you print a lot of black, I would suggest getting one of these, despite the price tag, because these are the only colored ones I’ve seen.
They have them listed on ebay too. I don’t know if they can communicate in English, but if you need help, let me know and I’ll give you a hand with ordering.
My other plate comes from ahltec.de
They only have black and only in 1 or 2mm thickness. I doubt the 2mm can flex, so that would not be the one to get for printing PLA without a heated bed. The Price is fantastic though! 1mm flex nicely, and that is the only one I would recommend for non-heated bed printing.
The site is in German only. But if you mail them at email@example.com, they will answer in English and you can order through the mail (which is what I did).
I can recommend this type of plate, not in the least because in the long run, despite the price tag, using this plate will come out cheaper than using any other consumable. And will take less time away from printing because there is no maintenance on it.
Link to ahtec’s page for the plate:
The Escher Lizards come from here:
Edit: More Lizards, jest for da Sister: