I'm trying to print a large piece with polycarbonate but it keeps warping, I'm using a Taz 5 printer and setting 290 C in the extruder and 145 C in the heating bed.

Other setting I have are:

  1. printing speed: 20 mm/s
  2. layer height: 2.5mm
  3. infil: 20%
  4. brim: 15mm

Can anyone tell me any tips or suggestions to avoid warping?

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ other configurations that i'm using are: printing speed 20mm/s layer height 2.5mm infil: 20% $\endgroup$ – Juan Pablo Rodas Martínez Nov 14 '17 at 0:56
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ You may need to provide a heated enclosure, not just a heated bed. Polycarbonate is known to be tricky to print. $\endgroup$ – Mick Nov 14 '17 at 3:40
  • $\begingroup$ Are you using a hangprinter by any chance? Or is 2.5mm just a typo and you meant 0.25 mm? If it is the former, then you could try printing on a physically corrugated surface, like roughed-up plywood or a surface covered in skateboards grip film... $\endgroup$ – mac Jan 18 '18 at 1:41

Adjusting the design may also be able to help limit the amount of warping you get.

One of the major causes of warping is upper layers contracting while cooling when laid down over now-cool(er) lower layers which no longer contract so much but are still thin enough to flex when subject to tension along their upper edge. Insertion of strategically placed gaps in upper layers can reduce the tension such layers are able to apply.

I was printing some long thin beams in ABS. I inserted horizontal-axis holes along the beams (making them look a bit like LEGO Technic beams rather than solid pieces). It did the job for me.


I would take a look here and here. Literally the first two results of Google.

To summarize what they say,

You need good bed adhesion to keep the first layer from warping near the edges like you will get normally with ABS or PC(Polycarbonate). Some use hairspray or gluestick. I manage myself with buildtak surface. I would stay away from blue painters tape. Your looking for something very sticky. This of course makes it a nightmare to get the part off the bed but well worth the trouble if it keeps your print on the bed and flat.

Make sure the part receives adequate heat. Like someone wrote in the comments, a enclosure works best to keep the temperature of the entire print warm instead of just the few layers closest to the bed.

More perimeter layers works very well by providing more structural strength to try and combat the warping. I've stumbled upon this solution when I had trouble with ABS.

Lastly, first layer is always the most important part of any print. You want to make sure it is as level as possible and a good tip is to raise your bed just so slightly than usual so the first layer is jammed hard against the bed. This provides better surface area. Just be careful not to clog your printhead cause if you constrict the flow out of the nozzle too much, you'll might end up with plastic trying to flow upwards or maybe grind the filament with the extruder gear.

  • $\begingroup$ "More perimeter layers works very well by providing more structural strength to try and combat the warping". This sounds very counter-intuitive. I would imagine more perimeter layers will contribute to more warping as they are contracting in the most effective direction to create curling, not less.... Could you elaborate more? $\endgroup$ – mac Jan 18 '18 at 1:37
  • $\begingroup$ @mac Everyone's experience is different. Since I don't enclose my printers I have difficulty printing large ABS prints. I usually go at 3 perimeters but that causes warping and splitting. When I print at 6 perimeters I actually avoid the splitting but I still get some warping on the bottom. It is an improvement but not a solution. $\endgroup$ – Athanasios Karagiannis Jan 25 '18 at 19:35

I had the same problem with ABS. I tried first painters tape and it was a very bad. Double-sided adhesive tape was good at the beginning but there was wrapping after several layers. The best solution was a mixture of acetone and ABS. I applied it onto the surface of the heated bed and there was no wrapping.


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