Printing Vases that are Water Tight

I need some advice on printing water tight vases in vase mode. I have 3 printers, Prusa mk3s+, Raise 3d E2, and Qidi X-Max. I have tried doing this in Cura, Prusa Slicer and Idea Maker.

On 2 of my printers, I use a .6 nozzle.

I have also tried using Pla and PETG.

Here is my problem. When I print vases in vase mode, I have a dickens of a time getting them water tight. They always leak from the bottom.

On my .4 nozzles, I usually use a .6 line width. On my .6 nozzles, I have tried both a .,6 and .8 line width. I have also set bottom layers at a minimum of 5 all the way up to 18. I have played with horizontal expansion, temp, speeds and a number of other settings to no avail.

The reason I am trying to do this in vase mode is due to time involved and the fact that some of the filaments I am using are transparent, so the effect is nicer than if I have to use multiple walls. Also, since some of the vases are circular, I don’t want a seam.

Anyone have any advice on what I can do to get this to work?


Many folks recommend spraying them with Polyuithan, which will seal them.

I saw an instance where the guy used a 0.8 nozzle and printed something like 1.2 or 1.4 line width. It came out chunky as heck, and it was slow to print because so much filament needed to be pushed though, but it worked, and the effect was actually kind of nice.

This is an interesting question. I’ve had some success with a 0.4 mm nozzle (0.14 layer height and 0.8 mm line width at “high” temperatures). However, I’ve not had consistent results. I’d like to investigate this more systematically after the holiday printing rush (if it didn’t work, I’d use polyurethane). I suspect that shape plays a role but would investigate skin overlap percentage/flow and number of bottom layers first using cylinders first.