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A real heated print bed for the M3D - First test.

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Having built a heated bed from a light bulb and a dimmer, I'm ready for a better one.
This is the real deal. Heats up to 120 degrees C.
Found it at
Fits the M3D perfectly!
First test:
Next steps:

  • Insulation
  • Mounting
  • Temperature control

Hi Asemeco. Really liking the progress of this heated bed asd something I am looking to build. Any further progress since the last post?

Does this fit the M3D?

I'm building one using many of the ideas and parts suggested here. I'm planning on posting a complete tutorial to this thread once it's complete. I hope it'll help others as you've all helped me thus far! Give me another month or two and I'll post what I have.


I use same heatbed but with a 12v standalone heater controller and blue tape. Run at 70C for pla and no detaching. At moment have 10A psu ( 112307082910) for bed and 1A psu plug for controller. Only use the - heat and 12v connections as controller has its own sensor. eBay Item id 162365194450. Going to get a 12A/15A psu to make it run from one supply and make a housing for controller to tidy up setup. Not used insulation layer only drilled m3 holes to mount directly on old build plate leaving an air gap under neath that the sensor can fit under.

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Awesome! Nice work!

i know the temp range is quite high for our purpose but this might be worth something. picking up as soldering iron that has a temp control module in it. and maybe using just the controller part?


Good idea, but how about heat distribution? The soldering iron is designed to concentrate heat in a small area.
If I could find a way to spread the heat, I could use this.

What do you have for temp control?

Wotking on it. I think I'll get a 12V power supply for LED strips with a dimmer.

A cheap Arduino with a thermocouple and potentiometer is all that you would need to control the temp.

You're right. I'm doing it one step at a time, though.
The first version will use a potentiometer and an IR thermometer to manually regulate temp. I'll use that to test and perfect mounting and insulation. I want to minimize bed height while I make sure the M3D won't melt.
Once that's done, I'll look into OctoPrint's heated bed support. It would be great to get the M3D to pay attention to bed temperature GCode commands!

You can build a board to be compatible with OctoPrint's heated bed control:

A user at Google Plus' M3D community is doing just that:

would you show how you wire it up? i have a few adjustable power supply that i can use to see if adjusting the voltage affects the temp, kinda like how a dimmer wouldwork.

We looked at the RepRap/Mendel documentation, plus just trial and error.

The heated bed comes with 5 wires:

  • Heat (-)
  • 12V (+)
  • SIG
  • 5V
  • GND

It is designed to plug into a RepRap Mendel board, but for the M3D we can bypass all that.
We just need to supply GND, -12V for Heat, and between 5 and 12V on the +12V line.
5V heats the bed to 50 degrees, 12V heats to around 120 degrees.
I plan to use a variable resistor.
You don't need -12V. Just connect 'Heat' to ground and 'GND' to +12V.

SIG and 5V are signals from the thermistor to the RepRap board, telling it the current bed temperature. I am ignoring those for now.

I finally got the time to report progress on the heated print bed. This is how it looks after adding insulation and a variable voltage circuit to control temperature manually.

It is bolted to a plastic M3D bed plate. After printing at 100 degrees for 5 hours, the other side of the bed only heated to 60 degrees.
Now I print PLA at 70 degrees and ABS at 100. No more warping or detaching.

Next: Use M3D-Fio Octoprint integration to control bed temp from Gcode.

any chance you could post what type of controller was used?

80W PWM DC Motor Speed Controller Adjustable Variable Speed Switch DC Motor Driver


Not as good as a thermostat, but it will do for now.

I'll post an update this weekend, with pictures and dimensions.

So far, I have 5 layers:

  • Aluminum plate
  • Heating surface
  • Insulation (aerogel)
  • Aluminum plate
  • The printer's own plastic 'click-in' plate

It may be overkill, but after 3 hours at 100 C, the bottom plastic plate only reaches 65 C. That should be acceptable. It would be even better if I force air circulation in the closed space below the plastic plate (where the internal spool goes).

Temp. control:
I use a variable voltage circuit with a knob. Manual control for now. This will be replaced with a thermostat circuit.

hey ,man i know this is old thread but do you mind sharing how to wire it and what power supply you used? i got the same bed as you got and just needed some infor if you can shaer how you wired it

Awesome work!!! I am following what you are doing. Any ideas on where you got the Aluminum plate and aerogel ? Thickness ?

Aerogel: Thermal Wrap™ 3.5-mm Blanket
Aluminum plate:Aluminum Sheet 6061 O Bare 0.125"
I like this shop because they have a warehouse near where I live and I don't have to pay for shipping.

Nice, are you pulling the current from the micro itself or from a wall plug?

Wall plug. I would love to integrate it with the printer, but I don't know how (yet).

right now i use a shoes heater/dyer that plugs in straight to the wall. it heats up pretty good but i havent really measured but definitely not scalding hot, im assuming its around 40 to 60 degrees Celsius.

The rule of thumb is, if you can touch the print bed an keep your finger on, then it is lower than 60 degrees C.

i agree, im sure its below. ill try and measure it

Wow, very nice. Keep us posted on progress.