Does using Kapton tape provide any benefit over printing with blue painters tape when

Does using Kapton tape provide any benefit over printing with blue painters tape when printing PLA? I can only get PLA to stick if I rub down the painters tape with rubbing alcohol first, and then it’s damn near impossible to remove the print without taking all the tape off of the print bed. Not a life-ruining issue, but an annoyance I’d like to be rid of :slight_smile:

Your first layer might be pressing down on the tape too much.

As for kapton vs. blue tape, you will get a smoother bottom with kapton. You will need a heated platform, but once it cools it should be easier to remove the print.

I get quite some prints out of kapton on my heated bad with PLA. Rub it with nail polish remover stuff without perfume every 5th run to keep it sticky. I typically have to replace some kapton every 20 prints. Make sure to let it cool down long enough to make removal of parts easy peasy.

My printing life is so much nicer after ditching the tape. The latest PVA fad works great with PLA even without a heated bed.

@Billy , what is the PVA fad?

White glue or white glue diluted in water.

I never got back to you on that printbed I have on the Jr. I had every intention of making a heated bed for Jr but as it doesnt have one at the moment I thought I would try a theory based on all those perf board print beds used in the UP/Afinia printers and the old acrylic platform from the Cupcake. So Im using 6mm acrylic that has been sandblasted then laser etched with lines every 2mm to make a grid. So far the plastic pushes into the little grooves and holds itself down during the print. Doesnt seem to need cleaning or anything although I have only printed a few things. It does leave a little pattern on the bottom of the print and if the nozzle sits on it too long can melt it. Ill let you know how it goes and post the files soon.

I like the smooth result with the kapton and it sticks rather well for me on a 50C bed for a 120mm diameter print.

Kapton requires a heated bed for PLA; and it’s nice as far as getting prints off after the bed cools. Blue tape is easier, but it wears quicker. Adds yet another resource you have to keep buying.

For really large prints I just use blue tape to hold down all the edges of a chunk of printer paper. For smaller stuff adhesion isn’t really an issue.

Note: paper scrubs off with water in like 10 seconds.

@Billy The PVA is confusing too with PVAc (Poly vinyl acetate) and PVAl (polyvinyl alcohol.)
PVAc is glue, and PVAl is water soluble plastic.

@Chris_Thompson1 Thanks for the clarification, that’s why I was so confused at the mention of ‘PVA fad’ :slight_smile:

@Nick_Parker the problem with that is that paper isn’t adhered to the bed. So tall models, etc will sway back and forth causing reduced quality in the print.