Bethesda, MD - 3D printing technologies such as SLA, DLP, and Inkjet are some of the best ways to print high-quality objects with superior resolution. These technologies are all powered by UV-curable, photopolymer resins. The rapidly decreasing cost of the equipment has encouraged hobbyists, students and others who want UV-cure quality to dive into the technology – often without adequate preparation.
It’s just a printer – right?
"Not so," according to Mike Idacavage, vice president for business development at Colorado Photopolymer Solutions in Boulder, Colorado, and chair of the RadTech UV 3D Printing Committee. “While discussing at RadTech how consumers are now using this technology, it became evident that they might not be aware of how to properly handle the materials, and we felt it was our responsibility to publish a fact sheet to guide users,” Idacavage said.
As a result, the RadTech 3D Printing Committee has published a recommendation guide entitled: "Proper Handling of UV Curable 3D Printing Resins," available in 8.5"x11" and 11"x17" poster sizes at http://www.radtech.org/health-safety/proper-handling-of-uv-resins.
The group began developing the guide by considering what consumers would need to know to properly work with the technology. The next step was to ensure it could be read and understood by someone who did not have a technical background. Then, the guide was tested with a consumer-level audience: The reaction was ‘Why didn’t I have this when I first bought the machine?’
“3D Printer users need to understand this is not simply like handling items in the kitchen," according to Idacavage. "It’s important for them to know they need to use appropriate gloves and goggles, to keep food and drinks away from the area, how to clean up any spills and how they can handle and treat the materials with respect. They need to understand their responsibility to keep leftover fluids out of the public water system and realize that the local municipality might classify partially cured or uncured resin as hazardous waste.”
In addition to soliciting feedback from users, RadTech asked developers to check with selected vendors of the consumables and obtained positive responses--several vendors indicated an interest in providing the guide to their customers.
The RadTech "Proper Handling of UV Curable 3D Printing Resins," guide is available in 8.5"x11" or 11"x17" poster sizes to all by free download at http://www.radtech.org/health-safety/proper-handling-of-uv-resins.