Magnetic Stirrer Hot Plate Method

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CAUTION:  Ensure that your magnetic hotplate stirrer is properly rated to use flammable solvents. Failure to do so could present a fire hazard.

 

The below procedure is a general guideline to help the customer process their printed VisiJet® M2 ICast pattern. Your results may vary slightly from the below procedure. Before proceeding with the procedure, confirm you have the following items in place. Also, make sure to perform this procedure in a well ventilated room or under a ventilation hood with proper fire suppression.

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NOTE: Wax patterns are fragile and should always be handled and processed with care. Expect a slight learning curve in developing the best techniques for working with these patterns. Please consult the [Best Practices] for more information about methods of handling and processing printed patterns.

 

Items Needed:

  • (1 or 2) Magnetic hotplate stirrer
  • (2) Large stainless steel reservoir
  • (1 or 2) Reservoir for clean water
  • (2) Plastic pattern holding basket/ wire rack
  • 99%> Isopropyl Alcohol (IPA)
  • Clean water at 35 °C and room temperature (from tap or other heating source)
  • Safety goggles
  • Nitrile, heat resistant and cut resistant gloves
  • Heat gun/holding fixture
  • Wax carving kit
  • Paper towels
  1. Place build plate on heat gun fixture with heat gun positioned below build plate.

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  1. Put on heat resistant gloves.
  2. Turn heat gun on and apply heat to build plate, occasionally moving heat gun to different portions of the build plate.
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NOTE: Heat gun method works best for plates which have multiple patterns. If there is only a single pattern on the plate (especially if large) then it may be more advantageous to use a hot plate.

 

  1. Patterns will begin to melt around edges. At this point carefully try to remove pattern(s) from build plate. Larger patterns will take longer to remove. Small patterns will quickly melt and will have to be removed swiftly so the build wax is not damaged.
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  1. Place patterns on parchment paper/crumpled aluminum foil/non-stick sheet. Once all patterns have been removed from the plate, turn off the heat gun.
  2. Wipe up excess support wax from build plate while still warm—this makes plate cleaning easier.
  3. Replace heat resistant gloves for cut resistant gloves.
  4. Standing over a trash can or catch tub, carefully break away support structure. Wax carving kits are useful for reaching hard to get places & for blind holes. Care should be taken when using wax carving tools as they can easily damage build material and/or the operator.

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NOTE: Removing the bulk of the support material during this step will help the solvent bath last longer and be more effective.

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NOTE: A good rule of thumb is to remove 25-50% support wax by hand. This should only take a few minutes.

  1. Put on safety goggles and a pair of nitrile gloves for the remainder of this procedure.
  2. Turn on magnetic stirrer hot plate to 35° C. If your hot plate does not have an exact temperature setting, then use an infrared or probe thermometer. Adjust the heat dial until 35 °C is achieved.
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NOTE: Remember to perform this section in a well ventilated area or a hood. Consult your suppliers MSDS for IPA and have proper fire suppression, and follow applicable local or company specific rules/guidelines for handling flammable liquids.

  1. Place an approved stainless steel container onto hotplate with 99%> Isopropyl Alcohol (IPA) and have at least 1” of space from the top of the container. Place lid on container to help reduce evaporation. Place magnetic stir rod into container.
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NOTE: Aluminum foil works well as a lid to reduce IPA evaporation during pattern processing. Do not seal the container with a tight fitting lid.

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  1. Turn on magnetic stirrer to a medium setting so that there is a nice smooth circulation in the container. If the IPA is splashing out of the container, turn your settings down. Speed will need to be adjusted based on bath size.
  2. Place plastic pattern basket/wire rack into bath. Leave enough room so the magnetic stir rod cannot interact with the basket.
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NOTE: If using a wire rack, be sure that it does not come close to the magnetic stir rod as this will cause the rod to be attracted to the metal rack.

 

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  1. Carefully place de-bulked patterns onto the submerged basket. Do not double stack patterns.

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  1. Place lid loosely onto IPA bath to help reduce evaporation. Do not seal the container.
  2. Check patterns every 3-5 minutes to see progress of support material dissolving.
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NOTE: The time it takes to dissolve support material depends on pattern geometry, wax content of bath, and stirrer speed.

  1. This pattern was removed from the IPA bath after 5 minutes. You can clearly see the support material dissolving away from the build material.
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  1. Once your pattern(s) look visually free of support material, turn stirrer dial to “0”/off and remove basket. Place basket onto a dry paper towel.
  2. Place lid on container and turn off magnetic hot plate if no additional patterns will be further processed.
  3. Rinsing and drying of patterns can be done by two different methods:
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NOTE: Patterns are delicate, so handle with care. Large changes in temperature can cause thermal cracking of these patterns so ensure they do not undergo a large temperature shift in a short time.

 

Double Hotplate Method:

1st 35 °C IPA Bath

(Hotplate #1)

2nd 35 °C IPA Rinse Bath

(Hotplate #2) (a)

35 °C Water Rinse

(b)

Air Dry

(c)

   

Single Hotplate Method:

1st 35 °C IPA Bath

(Hotplate #1)

35 °C Water Rinse

(a)

Air dry and Cool To Room Temperature

(b)

2nd Room Temperature IPA Rinse Bath

(c)

Room Temperature Water Rinse

(d)

Air Dry

(e)

Double hotplate method (preferred method):

  1. Place basket into a 35 °C clean IPA rinse bath. Rinse patterns for 30 seconds.
  2. Remove basket from clean IPA rinse and rinse in 35 °C clean water. Rinse patterns for 30 seconds.
  3. Remove basket and allow patterns to air dry.

Single hotplate method (alternative method):

  1. Place basket in 35 °C clean water. Rinse patterns for 30 seconds.
  2. Remove basket and allow patterns to cool to room temperature.
  3. Place basket into room temperature IPA rinse. Rinse patterns until residual wax is removed.
  4. Remove basket from clean IPA rinse and place into room temperature clean water. Rinse patterns for 30 seconds.
  5. Remove basket and allow patterns to air dry.
  1. A finished processed pattern is shown below. There is white residue left on the finished patterns. This is normal.

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