The most common FDM 3D printing materials are ABS, PLA and their various blends. More advanced FDM printers can also print with other specialized materials that offer properties such as increased heat resistance, impact resistance, chemical resistance and stiffness. ABS is a low-cost material, ideal for printing strong and durable parts that can withstand high temperatures. Flexible filaments, commonly referred to as TPE or TPU, are known for their elasticity, which allows the material to stretch and bend easily.
PLA is the reference material for most users due to its ease of use, dimensional accuracy and low cost. HIPS is a lightweight material that is most commonly used as a soluble support structure for ABS models. PET and PETG filaments are known for their ease of printing, smooth surface finish, and water resistance. Nylon is a hard, semi-flexible material that offers high impact and abrasion resistance.
It's an ideal choice for printing durable parts. Carbon fiber filaments contain short fibers that are infused into a PLA or ABS base material to help increase strength and stiffness. ASA is a common alternative to ABS and is ideal for outdoor applications due to its high resistance to UV rays, temperature and impacts. Polypropylene is ideal for high cycle and low strength applications due to its fatigue resistance, semi-flexible and lightweight characteristics.
The wood filaments combine a PLA base material with cork, wood powder or other derivatives, giving the models a real wood look and feel. Metal 3D printing filament is a type of FFF filament made of a metal-polymer composite. One of the most widely used printing materials, PLA (polylactic acid) is very versatile. It is made from renewable sources such as sugar cane, which helps keep the price low.
It is a very tolerant material with a low probability of deformation and good reuse. As an added benefit, it produces a sweet popcorn smell when melted. ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene) is the second major plastic used in 3D printing. It is more heat resistant than PLA, but can be melted and reused if necessary.
Its melting point is approximately 221°F, so you don't have to worry about your creations melting in most cases. Now, there are a couple of limitations. First of all, you will need a thermal printing bed so that it does not stick. Second, you'll need a well-ventilated print area.
This is because HIPS vapors can give you a real headache if allowed to build up. With a transition temperature of 212°F, it is very similar to ABS. Like HIPS, PVA (polyvinyl alcohol) is most commonly used as a support material. Not so good at creating objects, since it's soft and biodegradable.
The main difference between PVA and HIPS is that PVA dissolves completely in warm water. This means that you don't need to get any additional solutions or products and you can simply continue with the work at hand. The main drawback of this material is that it tends to clog the nozzle if you keep heating it without actually printing. In addition, you'll need to store any additional amount of PVA in an airtight container to prevent moisture from entering.
If you want to create objects that can withstand shocks, nylon is the right material for you. It's tough, abrasion resistant, and has a good degree of flexibility that most others don't. For example, nylon can be used to create cable ties without them breaking. The main problem is that nylon tends to absorb moisture from its environment.
This can deform the finished product and compromise its structural integrity. As such, you'll need to store it in an airtight container when you're not using it. In addition, its transition temperature is quite high, around 250° F, so you may need a special extruder. The carbon fiber filament is usually PLA or ABS with strong fibers that improve its stability.
It is very light, but it manages to greatly improve the stiffness and stiffness of an object. In addition, these fibers help prevent shrinkage as the article cools. Required print settings hardly differ from those of ABS or PLA filament. Polycarbonate (sometimes called PC) filament is a transparent, tough material that is suitable for high temperature applications due to its very high transition temperature (around 302°F).
The PC is naturally flexible, so it can be used in a variety of circumstances, including those where printing is subject to stress. However, the PC filament absorbs moisture from its environment. This can cause warping or even layer separation in some cases, so you'll want to store it in an airtight container whenever possible. Due to the high temperatures involved, you will also need some type of heat protection when printing models with it.
ASA stands for Acrylic Styrene Acrylonitrile. Commonly used in outdoor applications because it is highly resistant to high temperatures and UV rays. It's also tough, so you don't have to worry about it breaking unless you're really hard on it. So far so good, but what's the catch? Well, ASA is expensive.
In addition, it emits fumes that can be hazardous to health. We recommend that you open all the windows in your print room, and maybe even wear a mask, just to be safe. With a transition temperature of around 210°F, you'll also need to run the extruder quite hot. Cobalt chrome is used in high-performance 3D printing applications.
Sometimes called a “superalloy”, it is known for its strength and also for its resistance to temperature and corrosion. The 3D printing technology required for its use is direct laser sintering of metal, also known as selective laser melting (SLM). Inconel is another superalloy, composed mainly of nickel and chromium. It is built to withstand the most extreme environments and has high temperature resistance.
Due to its strength, it is difficult to machine, so direct laser sintering of metal is the preferred method for shaping it. The medical sector has found uses for 3D printing in the creation of implants and bespoke devices. Wax 3D prints are used with SLA or PolyJet resins as an important step in the production process rather than as a final product. Polycarbonate is considered the strongest 3D printing material, with a tensile strength of 9,800 psi, compared to nylon, for example, at just 7,000 psi.
When deciding which 3D printing materials to choose for your job, you need to consider the application, function, and design of your component or product. This is a guide to the various properties and uses of 3D printed materials, starting with the different types of filaments available for fused deposition modeling (FDM) printers, followed by 3D printing materials with other technologies. With faster turnaround times than outsourcing and a wide range of engineering materials, FFF 3D printing is widely used in manufacturing industries. The growth and popularity of 3D metal printing holds the potential to manufacture and create more efficient machine parts that currently cannot be mass-produced on-site.
Print time depends on several factors, including part size and settings used for printing. PEEK 3D printing materials are used in the most demanding applications in the automotive, aerospace, chemical and medical industries, including the production of medical instruments and semiconductor components. Care must be taken when printing with carbon fiber, as it is extremely abrasive and can wear down the hot end of an extruder very quickly. An STL file provides the input information for 3D printing by modeling the object's surfaces as triangles that share edges and vertices with other neighboring triangles for the construction platform.
The resolution of the STL file affects the quality of 3D printed parts: if the resolution of the file is too high, the triangle may overlap, if it is too low, the model will have gaps, making it printable. However, challenges related to mass production mean that 3D printing is unlikely to replace traditional manufacturing, where comparatively high volume production of parts is required. . .