Saturday 9 October 2010

First DIY Heated-Bed build.

I had some parts on order for a Heated bed - Both the Alu Clad resistors and the Aluminium was quoted as two weeks delivery, so I used a rather scratched bit I already had to test a Heated bed.

MDF base, then a layer of Aluminium Foil (not shown)
Opal Polycarbonate 3mm sheet.
Silicone baking sheet (240 deg rated)
Then 3mm Aluminium sheet.

And because of not having my Resistors, I didn't want to use Nichrome Wire, so I went for a quick and dirty method others seem to have had some success with...

A brand new Iron for just £3.84 (1/4 the price of my resistor order) - It was also a good plan getting the cheapest Iron, as this just had a very thin Stainless sheet over a nice cast Aluminium base, and it was very small and Light -
So Rip-off the Stainless sheet, and remove the red silicone blob.

It has 3 mounting points already, they just need to be drilled through.
Sand the base with fine wet and dry.
Add a fine layer of heatsink compound and fix to Aluminium plate.
Wire it up and isolate.

Assembled and a glass hot-plate (£1.50) on top, this should be good for PLA (not tested yet).

For PLA It's getting 55 deg C-in the middle and about 50 deg C around the edges, may need a little more tweaking.

Without the glass and at maximum power I can get it up to 130deg C (120 edge) so it should just about be ok for ABS? - Hopefully I can test it tomorrow.

The MDF only gets slightly warm so it seems to be a reasonable use of materials, I would have liked to use PTFE Sheet, but maybe on the next one.

The very next day my Aluminium order turned up, so at least I can build a really nice one for the next machine...

Still waiting for my resistors to get here, but I'm really happy with the Iron for now.



  1. How did you power the Iorn element.. by mains..or low V

  2. Sorry Didn't spot this comment -

    I powered it with mains, it's the complete Iron, just cut-down body/parts and the thermal trip has been bent to allow a slightly higher operational temperature.


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