I still remember to this day the pure excitement I had the moment my resin printer arrived at my doorstep. The thrill of all the new stories I will tell, games I will play, and creations I’ll make for all my tabletop gaming adventures.
While that excitement is thrilling there is also sometimes a mixture of anxiety on ensuring you are unboxing and setting up your printer correctly.
Here I will walk you through step by step the process. This example will be utilizing a recent purchase and unboxing example of the Phrozen Sonic Mini 4K (purchased January 1, 2022). While file names & prints may not be the same for your individual purchase all steps are valid regardless of which resin printer you own.
- Unbox & Account for all items
- Locate and Plug in the Printer
- Remove the Vat
- Level the Build Plate
- Place Vat on the Printer
- Safety First and Shake The Resin Bottle
- Pour Resin Into the Vat
- Plug in the USB
- Navigate to Print Menu
- Select Test Mode
- Check Print Starting Correctly
- Check Your Victory
Step 1: Unboxing
The moment of truth when you get to unwrap your new adventure. Open up the inside to see what is in store!
Remove any foam or packing material away from the printer.
What is typically included in your printer order?
Your resin 3D printer commonly includes the following items:
Miscellaneous Parts and Tools
All the below tools can be found with the build plate in the parts box shown below.
Make sure you have everything the purchase promised you to have. If not make sure you immediately contact the location of where you purchased the printer for replacement. Some items shown below may not be ones that come with your specific printer but give you an idea as to what is a common expectation.
While not always included in your purchase sometimes these items will be added as addons for special sales or preorders.
Step 2: Locate and Plug in the Printer
Regardless of where you decide to locate your printer for the hobby. Make sure you set it down and plug it in.
Now turn on the printer!
Step 3: Remove the Vat
Safely unscrew your vat and move it to the side. Attempt to not put fingerprints on the clear film (FEP) or place in a way to prevent denting the film. If completely empty of any resin I personally prefer to set it upside down.
Step 4: Level the Build Plate
Now that your printer is turned on it is time to level your build plate.
This process is slightly different for every printer and company. If you are confused about your specific printer check the printers owners manual either that came with the printer the manufacturers website. There are also numerous leveling videos on YouTube for your printer. Just search your printer’s name and “build plate leveling”.
Tip: Bed leveling is a term used for FDM printing. If searching bed leveling you will commonly gain advice for the wrong type of printing
Step 5: Put Vat back on the printer
Do not forget to screw it back into place!
Step 6: Safety First & Shake your Resin Bottle
For safety put on your gloves and goggles and begin to shake your resin bottle. Resin will commonly settle out. In order to ensure you are going to have a successful print make sure it is thoroughly mixed. Also note resin may behave differently if you attempt to print with the resin directly after delivery. Let your resin get to room temperature ideally around 20º C or 68º F which is an ideal temperature for most branded resins.
Step 7: Pour your Resin into the Vat
Now it is time to put your resin into the vat. This initial print will not necessarily take too much material so you will not have to add very much. Resin should completely cover the bottom of the vat and not be so high that when you lower the build plate the displaced liquid will not overflow the sides of your vat.
Step 8: Plug your USB into your printer
Step 9: Navigate to the Print menu on your printer
Step 10: Select the Printers Test Model
Step 11: Check to See if Print Starts Correctly
In the case of my Phrozen Sonic Mini 4K when successfully starting a print to home it will make a beep sound to state it hit the bottom safely. Making sure the printer starts correctly at your z=0 or home is key. Otherwise stop the printer and return to Step 3 Leveling your Plate. However this time there is resin in your field of work. So make sure you are wearing your personal protective gear appropriately (PPE).
Signs that the print has not started correctly is the sound of gears grinding, no progress shown on the printer LCD screen, or build plate not moving.
Step 12: Wait
Now you have done the hard work it is time for your printer to do the work.
Step 13: Check to see your victory!
Did not see your print?
Continue reading if you would like the step by step on safely removing your print from the printer and post process/cleaning methods.