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I am extending the bed of my TronXY X3 FDM RepRap printer.

I am extending the bed from 220 mm x 220 mm to 220 mm x 300 mm. For now, I will keep the existing bed and add and aluminum sheet on top. That leaves 40mm on front and back of the original bed.

Right now I only plan on running PLA; but, I do plan on heating the bed.

How thick does the aluminum sheet need to be?

1 Answer 1

Main factors that control the process of the print bed selection are

  • weight: too thick plate increases inertial force, limiting maximum acceleration/jerk (decreased print speed)
  • stiffness: too thin plate will warp when heated or bend during calibration (decreased print quality/printer reliability)

For table sizes around 400x400mm I would think of 4mm plate, but it still can warp if heated unevenly.

Sometimes it makes sense to use a sandwich-type table: lower level is MDF, cork panel for heat insulation and thin (1.5-2mm) aluminum heated bed on top.