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Accessories for 3D Printers

by Nathan Zachary
You can quickly and efficiently develop and produce parts for various applications thanks to 3D printing. But selecting the best 3D printing method and material is only one aspect of the equation. In the end

You can quickly and efficiently develop and produce parts for various applications thanks to 3D printing. But selecting the best 3D printing method and material is only one aspect of the equation. In the end, your ability to produce items with the appropriate mechanical properties, functional qualities, or aesthetics will primarily depend on the materials you choose.

This article will focus on filament as one of the accessories for 3D printers used in FDM 3D printing technology. Due to the rise of home 3D printers, fused deposition modeling (FDM), also known as fused filament fabrication (FFF), is the consumers’ most popular type of 3D printing.

As part of a 3D printer, this method works well for simple proof-of-concept models and quick and inexpensive prototyping of straightforward pieces, such as those that would ordinarily be machined. However, chemical and mechanical polishing techniques can produce finishes of a higher caliber. In order to address some of these problems and provide a wider selection of engineering thermoplastics or even composites, industrial FDM 3D printers use soluble supports; nevertheless, they are also very expensive.

When the layers don’t entirely adhere, voids may occasionally exist between them as the melted filament creates each layer. Therefore, when designing parts intended to carry weight or resist pulling, it is crucial to consider anisotropic parts.

Some of the most popular materials for FDM 3D printing are ABS, PLA, PETG, PVA, and their different mixtures. However, other specialty materials with features like better heat resistance, impact resistance, chemical resistance, and rigidity can also be printed with more sophisticated FDM printers.

PETG Filament

PETG is a very well-liked 3D printing material since it outperforms PLA in terms of strength, relative flexibility, and temperature endurance. It is measured in many ways that are comparable to those used for ABS, but it is also considerably simpler to work with. As a result, as the second-most popular 3D printing filament, it took ABS’ place.

Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET), which you may be familiar with from plastic water bottles, is the ingredient used to manufacture PETG. However, some of the ethylene glycols have had CHDM (cyclohexanedimethanol) substituted for them, which is why PET has the letter “G” for “glycol-modified” after it. The result is a filament that is more extrudable, less fragile, and clearer than PET.

The recycling process is altered as a result, which is a drawback. In addition, PETG is not typically recycled, despite the fact that PET is; the slight differences between these materials cause problematic contamination in recycling facilities.

Even so, it’s a fantastic filament choice for printing objects that need to be stable, smooth, and shrink as little as possible. The fact that PETG is regarded to be food-safe is another factor in its popularity, though you should still read the fine print on each spool you purchase to be sure.

PLA filament

The natural thermoplastic polyester, also known as Polylactic Acid (PLA) filament, is recyclable and derived from renewable resources like sugar cane or maize starch, according to the list of 3D printing ingredients on Snapmaker’s website. The filament is biodegradable under specified conditions because of its high heat capacity and superior mechanical strength. It is also non-toxic and does not melt down into fumes or poisons.

PLA is a readily available material for many people who are just beginning their 3D printing experiences. It is reasonably priced in filament form and can be printed at low temperatures without heated build surfaces or a controlled atmosphere.

However, compared to other 3D printing materials, PLA has a weak heat resistance and might not be robust enough to meet the mechanical requirements of your application. For less demanding applications, PLA parts might be effective, but they should be carefully evaluated when increased functionality is required.

PVA Filament

Polyvinyl alcohol, or PVA, is a substance used in 3D printing. It is a biodegradable, water-soluble polymer that is flexible. As a result, it is also known as the PVOH PVAL. It is produced by polymerizing the vinyl acetate utilized in its production to yield polyvinyl acetate, which is subsequently hydrolyzed to yield PVA filament.

The PVA substance dissolves easily in water, making it the perfect choice for support material. For example, in order to show a clear 3D item with the appropriate design, the object can be built and then submerged in water to cause the PVA to dissolve.

Making complicated shapes, especially ones with only partially enclosed voids, is a great use for PVA filament. The PVA filament support can be easily removed by dissolving the item in warm water Read more

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