I have a stock ender 5 plus that I’m upgrading to print ABS and Carbon fiber filaments , I’ve got everything done except the build surface itself and heat bed. What would you guys recommend for a build surface? And should I upgrade the stock bed heater? Thanks
Welcome to the group.
Personally, after much fiddling with magnetic beds and the fact that my Ender5Pro’s heat bed is has a high spot in the middle, I took a chance on 3DPCs Carbon Fibre build surface. It produces a finish like you get from glass but won’t shatter. (I shattered 2 glass sheets due to thermal expansion from printing in a cold room). Adhesion on the bed is marginal on it’s own, but if you use Elmer’s glue sticks, you get adhesion that I swear you could lift the printer with. I started to try that once but became concerned about the strain this was putting on the Z axis (the PRO only has one Z axis leadscrew). I do require the spatula and a hammer to release prints, even after it’s gone cold.
Some people think a bed that releases the models when it gets cold is a positive thing, but we get frequent power outages here and I’ve had several cases where I’ve had to use the ‘Power Loss Recovery’ feature on power loss. That won’t work if the bed has released the model. Beds that release prints when cold negate the benefits of the Power Loss Recovery feature on all but the shortest outages (under 2 minutes).
I’ve included a link to the bed, but there are different sizes available, and I can’t remember what size the PRO requires.
As for the heating element, I can’t remember what the 5Plus is using, indeed, I can’t even remember what the 5 Pro is using for a heat source but the limiting factor is the thermistor. Putting in a larger heat source will raise the temperature faster but the temperature will still only be measured in the location of the thermistor, so if the thermistor is in the center of the bed, once the center reaches the set temperature, heat will no longer be applied, even if the edges are still cold(er).
I found a thermistor upgrade made for the 5 plus
The ender 5 plus is 350 X350
I was debating getting the build plate you linked ,
Do you think changing the stock bed heater necessary
Or would the stock be alright ?
Some people swear by Garolite also called G-10 or FR4, basically circuit board material. Relatively cheap.
I tried something like this once, buying the sheet from a PCB supplier I’ve used many times in the past. There were two problems. First, I rarely made PCB’s even half the size of my current print bed and so I never really noticed that… Second, the PCB was warped.
At small scales a slight warping doesn’t matter on a PCB. I suppose if you’re putting something on an automated assembly line, it probably does, but everything I’ve ever worked with would fit in the palm of your hand and you’d never notice if it wasn’t flat.
Keep in mind that PCBs are generally screwed onto the base of an enclosure, and as such, any warping is straightened out, but we don’t have that luxury on a 3D printer.
Also, honestly, that PCB I was going to experiment with was one of the worst warped I’ve ever seen. Still good enough for hand-assembly of prototypes and small batches, but worse than the Ender5Pro’s build plate it was supposed to fix.
Keep in mind that PCB material tends to be very thin (relatively speaking) and is thus more prone to flexing. The Carbon Fibre build plate I now have is 5mm thick and very inflexible.
If you try the FR4 route, just be prepared that you may have to buy several sheets to find one that is truly flat within the tolerances acceptable to 3D printing.
As for the bed heater, as I mentioned above, the stock heater works fine. An upgraded heater will only reduce the time taken to reach the target temperature.
I don’t use it so I can’t comment on it’s warping but it does come in thicker boards. Several MM at least. Still might be warped!!!