Introduction: Using Corn Syrup As a Bed Adhesive for 3D Printers Without Heated Beds

If you're like me, your 3D printer doesn't have a heated bed. This probably means you've tried a whole variety of methods to get your 3D prints to stick. I've tried glue sticks, painter's tape, glue sticks with painter's tape and even hairspray, all of which failed no matter how hard I tried.

I then came across a tutorial from a YouTube channel called MySimpleFix, which said that you can use sugar water as a bed adhesive. Despite not having a printer with a heated bed like the one used in the video, I tried it, and the results were much more promising than anything I ever tried before. But still, my prints continued to peel.

This led me to try one of the thickest sugar products I could think of: golden corn syrup. After applying it to my bed and running a few test prints, I knew I had a winner as prints started to adhere to the bed every single time.

Step 1: List of Supplies

  • Paintbrushes, wooden stir sticks or some other applicator, if desired

You can try using high-fructose corn syrup for this Instructable. But be warned that it may contain more water than golden corn syrup and not work as well.

Step 2: Calibrate Your Print Bed

Having a calibrated build plate is important to ensure that the bottom layer of your 3D prints is uniform and sticks to the build surface. In order to calibrate my bed properly, I observe how far my nozzle is from the bed with the z-axis at the origin. Ideally, your nozzle should only be far enough from the bed to allow filament through, and not higher or lower than that. Your nozzle should definitely not touch the bed after you've successfully calibrated it.

Another thing you have to make sure of is that the nozzle is at the same distance from the print surface on all corners of the print bed. You can do this by moving the print head along the x-and-y axes and keeping the z-axis at the origin.

Step 3: Clean and Dry the Build Surface

Using a damp cloth or paper towel, clean the build surface. Then, make sure to dry it as much as possible.
After completing this step, your build surface should be clean and completely dry.

Step 4: Apply the Corn Syrup to the Build Surface

Without using water, apply a coating of corn syrup to the build plate.

Because corn syrup can be extremely sticky, feel free to use a paintbrush or popsicle stick which can be washed or disposed of to complete this step.

Step 5: Wait for the Corn Syrup to Cure

After applying the corn syrup, wait until the syrup dries out. It should feel almost dry to the touch (kind of like dried glue), and shouldn't leave too much of a sticky residue on your hands after you touch it.

Step 6: Printing

After following all these steps, you're ready to print!

You should notice that your prints stick much better to the bed than they did in the past. Once the print finishes, just rinse off the corn syrup residue with some warm water, and you're done!

I hope my Instructable made it easier for you to print!