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Get transparent? But how...HD Glass vs. Vertex PLA natural, lets try that!

Der_MuckDer_Muck Posts: 265🌟 Super Member 🌟
From time to time I think everyone want to try transparent prints.
There a couple  of special transparent filaments out there, every producer say they are the best but is that true?

I bought HD Glass from Form Futura, many say they are the best in transparent filaments.
It is not the easyest filament to print. It doesnt string a lot for a PETG filament but it has many spots on it. Looking like little salt on the print. Its easy to clean but yeah, you have to clean it. A good print doesnt need to be cleaned.
It took me realy a lot of test prints to get the correct settings for it.

Next filament I have here was a mistake buy, it was PLA natural as I thought the colour would be beige. It is little milky.
The filament come from Vertex and is a 1,75mm natural filament.

So I thought, ok milky PLA I test it to find the settings and okaaayyy, its good for cheap prints what doesnt need a special colour.
But than after the first print.... First settings where nearly perfect, only little more retract and it was perfect! AND.... transperent!
Not only a little, it looks even better than HD Glass prints!!!

Here on the left its HD Glass, on the right its the Vertex natural filament!

What do you say? Its totaly awesome because it looks so great, has a price difference and the PLA is sooo easy to print!

If you need transparent prints and nothing to worry about, I would say, try it!
Ah and in generell, dont try thin layers with transparent filaments, that doesnt look good in the end, its better to stay with 0,2mm


  • Samuel PinchesSamuel Pinches Posts: 2,997Administrator
    Wow, you should tell them to add transparent to their natural PLA marketing, haha!

    Clear results! :smiley: 

    thanks @Der_Muck for the comparison!
  • Der_MuckDer_Muck Posts: 265🌟 Super Member 🌟
    :D You are right hehe I realy thought I cant do anything special with the Vertex PLA but it is not only clear its soooo easy to set up.           Its a clear surprising filament :smiley:

    The next filament I set up for my test prints was Colorfabb PLA transparent green.
    Its should be the same like the natural one but it was soooo horrible to set up in my test prints. Its a totaly different setting on the printer even it is nealy the same PLA type.
    I dont understand that, it seems that I always have problems with filaments out of the netherlands :tired_face:

    Also the Colorfabb PA Neat is simply horror, it was new, in a light vacum packed spul and printed like it was not packed.
    It does only ooze the whole time and is so hydrated that you cant print it, now its in the oven....
    Thanked by 1giantrobot2001
  • topolitopoli Posts: 5Member
    I just tried to work with HD glass - I tried many different settings but no one worked.
    sometime no bed adhesion - some times big warping - than under or overextrusion
    details did not come out - and so on.

    so maybe you can share your settings in cura and what kind of bed you used?

    Thanks a million in advance.
  • giantrobot2001giantrobot2001 Posts: 106🌟 Super Member 🌟
    edited June 2020
    Regarding success with PETG,
    To keep from wasting time and filament on PETG prints, I tend to use a raft on blue tape now.  And with the blue tape you can set the bed much lower temperature and that will also give better stability to your tape's adhesion.  I never tried without bed heat, but with a raft, PETG sticks to blue tape pretty good, it may not need heat.
    (I like my Daimond Glass beds and PLA and that's what I use most.. I'm still learning about my blue tape shrinkage/adhesion and I use about 65 with blue tape but I'm not sure)

    I have some clear PETG and I use only the Diamond JG bed if it is just flat area contact to the bed on a small piece (like the tiny table in the first pic would be easy to print nice with my PETG clear).  Even then I want the bed up at 95 or higher if I'm printing straight down onto the black glass.

    I have some red transparent PETG, and bed adhesion was horrible, worse than the clear - it was rolling little red balls under the tip until I got the first layer close enough, but then it is a bit too close/tight to the bed.  I used it for smaller pieces and I used a brim or raft on the Black Glass.  I did not have to use the blue tape.  If you need to print on the glass because you need a really flat bottom (or don't want to try to clean blue tape off the part), use a brim - it will help alot. You'll be running it tight when you level and on one of my machines, the dome goes perfectly flat at about 60c B)

    Hot End:
    Also, to keep it laying down smoothly on the more jiggley parts of the print like a thin wall with a fill in it, I have to print at the highest possible temperature for my machine. that imprives the clear PETG clarity and it seems to come out of the tip more smoothly without blobbing up in spots where the print head jerks around and it gets alot less stringy and bumpy overall.

    For that reason, most people recommend printing at a higher layer thickness like .2 or .3 on clear PETG

    So I guess that means PETG needs to go down at a higher temperature, closer to 250c, and I'm still waiting on my meter but I suspect both my A5S machines that I did these on are under actual temp, and I have to set them a few degrees under 250 or the machine won't print with factory firmware.  So I am going to load firmware with a higher limit... PLEASE NOTE, The sleeve in the throat of the hot end is not designed for over 250 on a JG machine (and can cause toxic fumes over 250c)  - you need a different throat.

    So, I have ordered the meter, but I also ordered a Micro Swiss solid metal throat just to try the results on PETG up to about 265 after customizing the firmware.  I really don't want to try anything hotter than that right now.

    I think this is right for A5 and A5S - I hope so

    The point of the OP was the good transparency on the natural PLA.  There is a sweet spot in the temperature where PLA,  creates a pretty transparent part. I like about 230c on my machine/material. Play with it on a little test block or something. I have printed a bunch of natural PLA with cheap Inland brand - the generic from Microcenter, and prints fine at a range of different heat settings, at a much lower temperature than PETG.  The PETG is generally stronger, but has different properties in strength and flexibility.  It has a brittleness about it.

    Thanked by 1Samuel Pinches
    Post edited by giantrobot2001 on
  • giantrobot2001giantrobot2001 Posts: 106🌟 Super Member 🌟
    edited June 2020
    Also PETG easily hardens like a shiny mineral in and around your tip.  Change back to PLA and extrude at a nice high temperature to get that old stuff out.  I litterally have a little bucket full of really nice cheap brass tips,
    and after PETG it's usually a good time to think about the last time I changed it.  If your PLA Doesn't extrude out nice and smooth after the change - change the tip. Please be careful and stay away from the thermistor where it is one of a few places people seem to be shorting out their A5s...  I totally unplug my machines often during maintenance - and tip changes while it's good and hot, and I am patient (and I actually go very slow) with power changes, power switches, and surges in handling the power supply sources.  Not sure it's all necessary (especially the frequent well planned well heated powerless tip changes), but I don't want to change boards.

    Post edited by giantrobot2001 on
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