Micron P305: anybody using it?

SmileRX

SmileRX

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Compared to the Formlabs 2, their website claims that it's got a 16% bigger build plate, 10x faster build speed, 2x better resolution, it's smaller, and open to all manufacturer's resins. And it's under $5K. Sounds a bit too good to be true. So, is anybody using it? If so, what are your thoughts?
 
sidesh0wb0b

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Compared to the Formlabs 2, their website claims that it's got a 16% bigger build plate, 10x faster build speed, 2x better resolution, it's smaller, and open to all manufacturer's resins. And it's under $5K. Sounds a bit too good to be true. So, is anybody using it? If so, what are your thoughts?
dont have much info on it, but the form3 is a bigger plate and under $5k too. just sayin
those do look nice. wish i knew someone using it. hopefully someone chimes in
 
3

3dPrinteddentalmodels

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dont have much info on it, but the form3 is a bigger plate and under $5k too. just sayin
those do look nice. wish i knew someone using it. hopefully someone chimes in
There is a lot of smoke and mirrors regarding the Form 3. I really don't think it will be out until some time next year and having looked at the mechanisms they are using to deliver the laser scanning system I can see issues with accuracy and tray wear and tear.
 
sidesh0wb0b

sidesh0wb0b

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There is a lot of smoke and mirrors regarding the Form 3. I really don't think it will be out until some time next year and having looked at the mechanisms they are using to deliver the laser scanning system I can see issues with accuracy and tray wear and tear.
i could be wrong, but i think some have already been delivered... @Wainwright can probably shed some light on that
 
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Wainwright

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There is a lot of smoke and mirrors regarding the Form 3. I really don't think it will be out until some time next year and having looked at the mechanisms they are using to deliver the laser scanning system I can see issues with accuracy and tray wear and tear.
Thanks, @sidesh0wb0b. The Form 3 is shipping to customers already and as for wear and tear on the tray I'm not really sure what you saw but as someone who leads the team that tests, validates, and makes the Form 3 ready for dental customers this is not a concern. The new resin tanks are quite durable and we expect and are seeing excellent life out of them, similar to the Form 2 LT tank (if not better).

Once this thing is buttoned up and ready for dental it will be by far the most accurate 3D printer for under 20, maybe even 30k.
 
Wainwright

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Compared to the Formlabs 2, their website claims that it's got a 16% bigger build plate, 10x faster build speed, 2x better resolution, it's smaller, and open to all manufacturer's resins. And it's under $5K. Sounds a bit too good to be true. So, is anybody using it? If so, what are your thoughts?
Comparing resolution on DLP or LED masking type printers to a SLA laser based printer is a bit of a difficult task and claiming its 2x better is really a stretch. SLA, and the Form 3, draws the edges of parts in a sweeping motion using a 80 um laser point, its similar to drawing a line with a pencil or pen. DLP or LED mask type printers rely on pixels, squares, to create edges. So if you have a line that cuts through the center of a pixel it needs to average or round up or down to the nearest edge. Envisiontec uses anti-aliasing technology that allows an edge pixel to be half power making it closer to reality. But, as for surface finish and printing the edge of a part SLA is superior to any pixel based system. That all being said, DLP and LED masking type printers are much faster, that is their true advantage.

The Micron does sound a bit too good to be true. A buddy of mine bought one and I asked him to print some test parts for me to scan and analyze but he never got around to doing it for me and haven't heard anything from him since. I'll try to follow up with him again and get a users opinion on it. Certainly looks promising.

I think we are in a moment in 3D printing in dental where there are so many options its almost like a bubble. In 3 to 5 years I would guess the amount of companies making 3D printers in dental will greatly reduce to around 5. The industry just cannot support 20 3D printing companies, there just are not that many customers.

One of the many reasons I feel confident with Formlabs and I could say the same about 3DSystems, is its a big well established company that isn't going anywhere anytime soon. I believe we are about to hit 600 employees and are still growing like crazy. The amount of material scientists we have is like 30 or 40, thats more people than most other 3D printing companies have total.

Okay, gotta go, y'all.
 
R

rookiee

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I believe Formlabs would be out of the picture in dental if you won't step it up. FL2 was ok printer for most techs dealing with getting into 3D printing...but from own experiences FL in my lab was used mainly for wax ups, for everything else it was a toy...speed, accurancy and consistency was just not there...so a lot of serious lab switched to something else, including myself and would never go with FL again, not right now, not even with 3 and price is maybe important in the begining but right now I have result as it should be with every print, yes, more expensive printer but still...don't have time or patience to play and figure it out why is not as it should be...my 5c
 
Wainwright

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I believe Formlabs would be out of the picture in dental if you won't step it up. FL2 was ok printer for most techs dealing with getting into 3D printing...but from own experiences FL in my lab was used mainly for wax ups, for everything else it was a toy...speed, accurancy and consistency was just not there...so a lot of serious lab switched to something else, including myself and would never go with FL again, not right now, not even with 3 and price is maybe important in the begining but right now I have result as it should be with every print, yes, more expensive printer but still...don't have time or patience to play and figure it out why is not as it should be...my 5c
I agree with all of your points and we do have a lot to prove on the Form 3 (no pressure, Sam).

The only thing I'd comment on here is the accuracy point. The Form 2, when kept clean and well maintained, is one of the most accurate printers in dental still today. We have compared parts from our Form 2 vs most of the major 3D printers on the market, and many external customers have done independent studies that confirmed our finds as well. The Form 2 is a very accurate printer. Of course optics health and how parts are set-up are major variables. In the next month or two I'll have real data around where the Form 3 is in accuracy, speed, and consistency across build volume and multiple printers. For now I've added a gif at 40x power of a die and crown printed on the Form 2 out of Dental Model and Castable Wax Resins. Not too bad for a 3D printer under 5k.

Its also important to remember that in 2016 when the Form 2 first hit the shelves there were very few 3D printers on the market that worked in dental under 10k. That's very important because what it did was made everyone making, or not making yet, 3D printers in dental shift their expectations on what is possible at what price. Gone are the days of the Projet 3000 and Stratasys Eden 260 for 80k+.

It would have happened eventually anyway but I believe Formlabs had a major affect on the industry, for the better. Reliable, affordable, and easy to use 3D printing for all dental professionals interested in using the technology.

I hope in 6 months once people start really having experience with the Form 3 your opinion of Formlabs will change but its on us to make the product better and meet your (and everyone in dental) expectations.

Thanks for sharing. I hope this is helpful in some small way.

 
3

3dPrinteddentalmodels

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I agree with all of your points and we do have a lot to prove on the Form 3 (no pressure, Sam).

The only thing I'd comment on here is the accuracy point. The Form 2, when kept clean and well maintained, is one of the most accurate printers in dental still today. We have compared parts from our Form 2 vs most of the major 3D printers on the market, and many external customers have done independent studies that confirmed our finds as well. The Form 2 is a very accurate printer. Of course optics health and how parts are set-up are major variables. In the next month or two I'll have real data around where the Form 3 is in accuracy, speed, and consistency across build volume and multiple printers. For now I've added a gif at 40x power of a die and crown printed on the Form 2 out of Dental Model and Castable Wax Resins. Not too bad for a 3D printer under 5k.

Its also important to remember that in 2016 when the Form 2 first hit the shelves there were very few 3D printers on the market that worked in dental under 10k. That's very important because what it did was made everyone making, or not making yet, 3D printers in dental shift their expectations on what is possible at what price. Gone are the days of the Projet 3000 and Stratasys Eden 260 for 80k+.

It would have happened eventually anyway but I believe Formlabs had a major affect on the industry, for the better. Reliable, affordable, and easy to use 3D printing for all dental professionals interested in using the technology.

I hope in 6 months once people start really having experience with the Form 3 your opinion of Formlabs will change but its on us to make the product better and meet your (and everyone in dental) expectations.

Thanks for sharing. I hope this is helpful in some small way.
I really do not think that a formlab printer would be one of the most accurate printers no matter how well maintained and clean it is kept. it has a XY accuracy of 140µ which only allows for vacuum formed models and not even close to the accuracy needed to do removable die or crown and bridge. What type of X/Y accuracy does the new form 3 have ?
 
Wainwright

Wainwright

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I really do not think that a formlab printer would be one of the most accurate printers no matter how well maintained and clean it is kept. it has a XY accuracy of 140µ which only allows for vacuum formed models and not even close to the accuracy needed to do removable die or crown and bridge. What type of X/Y accuracy does the new form 3 have ?
Thanks for bringing this point up. This is a common misconception about SLA, the laser size (140 um on a Form 2 and 80 um on a Form 3) has nothing to do with accuracy. The laser is used to draw the edge of the part and again just like writing with a pencil you can make edges and features smaller than the tip size. I've added a simple clip that illustrates this concept.

The lasers movement (or X and Y resolution) is less than 15 microns in precision.

The only thing the laser size DOES affect is minimum features. If something, say a margin, is less than 140 um (for the Form 2) it will not be able to create accurately. In milling restorations margins offsets (if someone doesn't know what im talking about please let me know, I can share a few visuals) are typically 0.15 to 0.2 depending on the material and the machine. Our 3Shape and ExoCAD settings have a margin offset of 0.15 which is on par or better than milling. Again, this is the only way the laser size will have an impact on a dental user.

Further more on DLP or LED type printers edges are created with pixels, typically 60 to 100 um in length and width, no matter what you will have unsmooth surfaces and finishes. SLA draws smooth lines which is one of the many reasons why the Form 2 and Form 3 will always have better looking parts and be as accurate if not better than these other printer types.

I'd be happy to take a print from any printer, take that same file print it, scan both and compare to show the results. I did it recently for a customer vs a Carbon printer and our part was more accurate, not by much, but it was better. Keep in mind we are comparing a 150k printer vs one that is 5k.

Lets keep debunking these theories. Thanks for asking the question.


 
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3dPrinteddentalmodels

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would the laser be distorted when printing models out on the edge ?
 
Wainwright

Wainwright

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would the laser be distorted when printing models out on the edge ?
On the Form 2 there is a slight oblong nature to the laser towards the outside of the build volume but we use software and a few other tricks to reduce it. The variability is pretty low but I still suggest high accuracy parts like dies to be placed in the middle of the build plate. This is a similar phenomenon to DLP but slightly different.

The Form 3 solves this issue since the laser moves across the build plate as it prints and using a very advanced parabolic mirror vs a flat one on the Form 2.

So oblong lasers no more!

This technology was critical not just on the Form 3 but very much so on the Form 3L, the build volume is huge and you could never have a centrally placed laser. Additionally the Form 3L uses two lasers, which is pretty neat in of itself.

Another good question. Anything else?

form3lbuild.PNG
 
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We bought this printer about 6 months ago. Very productive printer, we use it for models. Easy company to work with and very responsive. Looking at buying another one next week. Good build quality, not all plastic like Formlabs which we have four of. Sort of messy draining off the resin after a print job but with the holder it drains back into the tray.
 
3

3dPrinteddentalmodels

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On the Form 2 there is a slight oblong nature to the laser towards the outside of the build volume but we use software and a few other tricks to reduce it. The variability is pretty low but I still suggest high accuracy parts like dies to be placed in the middle of the build plate. This is a similar phenomenon to DLP but slightly different.

The Form 3 solves this issue since the laser moves across the build plate as it prints and using a very advanced parabolic mirror vs a flat one on the Form 2.

So oblong lasers no more!

This technology was critical not just on the Form 3 but very much so on the Form 3L, the build volume is huge and you could never have a centrally placed laser. Additionally the Form 3L uses two lasers, which is pretty neat in of itself.

Another good question. Anything else?
With the new Parabolic mirror and scan system would this mean the print time is relative to model height rather then number of models ?
 
Wainwright

Wainwright

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With the new Parabolic mirror and scan system would this mean the print time is relative to model height rather then number of models ?
No, it still draws the part line by line with a laser, height and volume of parts will affect print times. Adaptive layer heights are coming soon which will decrease print times without sacrificing accuracy and surface quality (it will be able to go down to 6.5 microns per layer!) and the Form 3 is a bit quicker than the Form 2.

LED masking, like in the Micron printer, and DLP will always be faster than laser based SLA. Its inherent in the technology. But there are pros and cons in all three currently most popular 3d printing technologies in dental; DLP, LED, and SLA.

Welcome @richm , the Micron P305 looks like a great printer. 👍
 
richm

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Thanks @Wainwright, and hello all. Actually, I've been a member of the forum since 2009, but we tend to answer customer questions through our support portal (free lifetime support). I have loved reading many thousands of excellent posts over the years, and DLN is always my goto resource on the internet for anything lab-related.

Regarding Laser vs DLP vs LCD vs Jetting, I think there is plenty of room for all technologies, and each has strengths and weaknesses.

PM me if you want to see a sample print from a Micron P305 printer.
 
CoolHandLuke

CoolHandLuke

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Are you the same richm that works at Digital Dental somethingorother in Scottsdale Arizona?
 
cadfan

cadfan

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@richm just one basic question which slicer vs support generator is part of your bundle ??
 
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