To PEI or not to PEI?

While excited about my new Mini I accidentally tore some of the bed’s PEI. I removed the bed and spent an hour with alcohol and an X-Acto blade taking off all of the leftover PEI and transfer adhesive.

I’m sure the next step is to order a replacement PEI and carefully install it. But is printing without the PEI on the bed an option? How about another type of material that could be bought locally?

Don’t print directly on the glass unless you enjoy buying new glass beds. Eventually a part will stick too well and pull glass shards up out of your bed. You can use PET tape if you can find it locally in a pinch, or blue painters tape if you print PLA. I-T-W.com has the mini PEI sheets available at a decent price.

People print on all sorts of things starting from bare glass. Hairspray, gluestick, painters tape, lulzjuice, etc… For something removable, I’ve had good results with a Zebra plate. There are lots of options if you want to try things while waiting for new PEI. Just make sure you clean the glass really well before trying to apply new PEI.

I would start with a bit of Z-offset added (0.1mm perhaps) to prevent parts from sticking too much. Do a couple small test prints to find a level that sticks but is reasonably easy to remove so you don’t damage the glass.

Blue painters tape is readily available at the hardware store. Everything else would probably need to purchased online… kapton tape, PEI.

For long term, I’d definitely go back to using PEI. Get a sheet from LB or ITW…

I took the PEI off my build plate too. I use Aqua Net Extra Super Hold hairspray for adhesion and print with ABS and everything works out great. If you want to save yourself a good amount of money and not have to worry about the tears and printing around them I say it’s a great option to leave it off.