If you are new to the world of physical printing, you may wonder what is an FEP film 3D printer. Some of the best printers, after all, are 3D printers. FEP printing is a popular subtype that uses Fluorinated Ethylene Propylene film on the bottom of the resin vat to create a tight seal. So let’s dive deeper into what exactly is FEP film printing and the advantages of this printing method.
Before learning how to level a 3D printer bed or learn about subtypes, it is helpful to understand the basic concepts at work. These printers build objects out of raw materials, even if you are still learning what FDM 3D printing is. They extrude the materials via nozzles and slowly build objects on the print bed, which is helpful to know when learning the definition of FFF 3D printing.
Most resin tanks already feature a layer of protective film, which should last throughout the lifetime of the liquid resin.
Beyond that, there are many variables that change from printer to printer, leading many to wonder what size feeler gauge is appropriate for 3D printers.
All resin printers include a layer of protective film at the bottom of the resin tank. This film not only helps protect the resin from the elements, but it also keeps the vat airtight and allows crucial UV light to easily access the resin when making prints. There are many types of these films available to resin-based printers, and FEP, which stands for Fluorinated Ethylene Propylene, is one such type of protective film. This copolymer of hexafluoropropylene and tetrafluoroethylene was invented by DuPont and is sold under the brand name Teflon FEP.
Many modern resin printers have begun adopting FEP film as a primary choice when instituting a protective layer for the resin. Here is why.
By far, the best feature of FEP is its strength. When you slap a layer of this film at the bottom of a liquid resin tank, it is not going anywhere, and it takes a whole lot to break its airtight seal. This allows it to basically be a “set it and forget it” type of deal.
FEP resists the corrosive properties of many chemicals that regularly come into contact with resin tanks, further upping the protective abilities.
STAT: In terms of material, many desktop resin printers use FEP (Fluorinated Ethylene Propylene) films, a material known for their good chemical resistance and non-stick properties. (source)
These films need to be transparent to allow UV light in when making elaborate prints. FEP film is highly transparent.