In this article, we will take a closer look at two UV curing stations: The MeccatroniCore BB Cure Dental station, and the MeccatroniCore BB Cure Jewellery station. Both of these products are now on sale at GoPrint3D; links to them can be found at the bottom of our article.
Why do I need a UV curing station?
It is necessary to post-cure stereolithography-printed parts with UV light. The resins that SLA 3D printers – such as the Formlabs Form 2 and Form 1+ – print with are unstable prior to curing. UV light starts a chemical reaction within the resin, which makes parts stronger and sturdier.
Now, many people who are new to 3D printing presume that a simple UV lamp will suffice when it comes to post-curing parts. While this may sometimes work, the reality is that some resins require heat in addition to UV light to cure properly, and that’s where a dedicated curing station comes into play.
Related: WHAT FILE FORMATS ARE USED IN 3D PRINTING?
UV curing stations offer an enclosed environment for parts to cure. They are not affected by room temperature, natural light, or airflow. By placing printed parts into a station, you effectively provide the best possible environment for them to cure properly. And most importantly of all, UV curing stations can be heated, to meet exacting resin manufacturer requirements. For instance, Formlabs Castable resin needs to be cured under UV light with a wavelength of 405nm, and at a temperature of 45°C for at least 120 minutes. Failure to do this will result in lacklustre casts.
MeccatroniCore BB Cure Stations
We are delighted to now be offering MeccatroniCore BB Cure Stations within our online store. The MeccatroniCore BB Cure Dental station and the MeccatroniCore BB Cure Jewellery station have been tested by our team, and we have found them to be consistently excellent for post-curing parts. As their names suggest, these UV curing stations have been designed specifically for the dental industry and for the jewellery industry, and with Formlabs Dental SG resin and Castable Resin in mind. However, both models are actually capable of curing all standard Formlabs resins.
BB Cure dental
The BB Cure Dental station can cure Formlabs Dental SG resin, all Formlabs standard resins, Tough resin and Flexible resin. The oven has a maximum temperature of 60°C with LED technology; this allows the UV light to penetrate deep into printed parts. The 405nm UV LEDs are also positioned 360 ° for complete coverage. The Dental model meets the Blue UV-A and heat requirements of Dental SG.
BB Cure Jewellery
The BB Cure Dental station can cure Formlabs Castable resin, all Formlabs standard resins, Tough resin and Flexible resin. However, it cannot cure Dental SG resin, and vice versa. It too has 360 ° LEDs operating at a wave length of 405nm. However, the UV wavelengths are slightly different for the Jewellery version, hence its ability to cure Castable resin but not Dental SG resin.
Size and design
The BB Cure Dental station and the BB Cure Jewellery station are the same size, measuring 350 x 350 x 312 mm. To put that into context, the Formlabs Form 1+ 3D printer measures 300 x 280 x 450 mm, while the Formlabs Form 2 3D printer measures 350 x 330 x 520 mm. So the BB Cure stations aren’t overly big, and will fit on most work spaces. Both models can also accept the same size parts, up to 250 mm in diameter and 200 mm in height. They also plug into a conventional wall socket with a 12V DC 8A power supply, requiring an input of 100-240V.
Ease of use is also one of the BB Cure’s strong points. Settings are accessed via a touch-screen panel and the on-board software is intuitive. You can quickly set up the drying program and the UV program. Programs also have timers, to minimise the risk of overexposure.
Related: WHAT IS SLICING SOFTWARE, AND WHAT DOES IT DO?
The BB Cure is an excellent post-curing station, with a large volume to accommodate big parts and fantastic power to dry rapidly. We are still in the early testing stage of these machines, however early results have been extremely positive, and MeccatroniCore have extensively tested both models for reliability and consistency.
We have no issue in recommending them as a result.
Click the following links to find out more about the MeccatroniCore BB Cure Dental station and the MeccatroniCore BB Cure Jewellery station, or visit the official MeccatroniCore website.
First image credit: Formlabs