|Michigan Tech's Open Sustainability Technology Lab.|
STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURE
FOR: ALUMINUM SUBSTRATE CLEANING FOR 3-D PRINTING
CREATED BY: AMBERLEE HASELHUHN
REVISION: MARCH 24, 2016
- Metal print substrates
- Degreasing cleaner
- Green Scotch-Brite pad used only for aluminum
- 190 proof ethanol
- Disposable shop towels
- Choose which side of the print substrate you want to print on. Sometimes the substrates have angled edges due to how they are machined. One face of the substrate will typically be less scratched than the other; choose this face.
- File the edges that will be in contact with base that holds the plate in place. This ensure that no oxides will impede contact between the substrate and the base.
- Spray degreasing cleaner on the substrate. Using a moistened disposable shop towel, rub all surfaces of the substrate material to remove any oil, dirt, or other debris. Rinse thoroughly with water.
- Using the green Scotch-Brite pad, gently scrub the face of the substrate you’ll print on. You want to scrub in one direction so that tiny parallel lines are visible at the surface. You don’t need to scrub hard. The purpose of this is to remove any surface oxides to prevent porosity. Be sure to use a Scotch-Brite pad that is intended for use with aluminum and not a Scotch-Brite pad that has been used with other substrate materials. Set the Scotch-Brite pad aside in a clean location.
- Rinse all surfaces of the substrate with 190 proof ethanol.
- Set the clean substrate onto a clean shop towel with the face of the substrate you’ll print on facing upward. Allow to air dry. Do not dry with compressed air.