Adding a 3D printer to the mix brings up a whole new universe of possibilities. Everything from functional prosthetics to recreational tabletop knickknacks is possible because to one common ingredient: 3D printer filament.
It's the ingredient that makes 3D printing possible, and it comes in a variety of materials. So, how can you know which one to employ for your particular situation? In this article, we'll go over some of the most often utilised materials that make creating useful, appealing, and high-quality items easier than ever.
The Most Popular Types of Filament for 3D Printers Today
Consider the list given below that will help you select the right filament to print the 3D printing solutions you need:
1. PLA (Polylactic Acid) - Despite its brittleness and restricted mechanical characteristics, PLA is easily the most extensively utilised type of filament for 3D printers such as Modix 3D Printers. This is due to its biodegradable properties, availability in a variety of styles/colors, and ease of printing. It's commonly used to print everyday items like low-wear toys, containers, and prototype parts.
2. ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene) - Because it is more difficult to utilise during printing and emits harmful fumes, it isn't as common as Polylactic Acid for everyday 3D printing. This is due to the fact that without a hot print bed and adhesive, it is more likely to warp. It does, however, provide greater strength, durability, and resilience to extreme temperatures. Because of these qualities, it's ideal for injection moulding consumer goods like bicycle helmets and LEGO bricks.
3. PET (Polyethylene terephthalate) - It's one among the most often used plastics (PET bottles, for example). PETG, a 3D printing version, is also present in a variety of food containers and garment fibres. It's a durable, flexible, and easy-to-use filament for 3D printers like 3DGence's. This substance, on the other hand, is susceptible to dampness and has a scratch-prone surface. Functional parts in printers, mechanical bodies, and protective components that are likely to be subjected to persistent or abrupt stress are among its most well-known applications.
4. TPE (Thermoplastic Elastomers) - As the name implies, this filament is made of plastic with rubber-like qualities that make it durable and flexible. As a result, it's mostly employed to make medical equipment parts, automobile components, and home appliances. There are two significant variations:
a. TPU (Thermoplastic polyurethane) - Another well-known 3D printer filament that UK-based manufacturers choose is this one. It is more convenient to use for 3D printing because it is somewhat more stiff. Increased durability and elasticity retention in low temperatures come with this rigidity.
b. TPC (Thermoplastic Copolyester) - Despite having similar qualities to Thermoplastic Polyurethane, it is not as widely used. This is due to the fact that it is more difficult to print and necessitates a tight filament path as well as a slower print rate. It does, however, provide outstanding flexibility and increased resilience to higher temperatures of up to 150°C, as well as UV and chemicals. Because of these benefits, the material is appropriate for sections that are subject to compression and bending during usage.
5. Nylon - It's a well-known synthetic polymer range that's used in a variety of industrial settings. In fact, it's one of the most common materials used in powder-fusion 3D printing. It is a fantastic filament for Creatbot printers and other industrial 3D printers to build tools and mechanical parts such as gears and hinges because of its exceptional strength, flexibility, and resilience.
6. PC (Polycarbonate) - It is regarded as one of the most durable and resistant 3D printer filaments available. This material can also tolerate high temperatures of up to 110°C and extreme physical impacts. Due to its natural transparency, this material can be found in a variety of commercial products. Electronic display screens, bulletproof glass, and dive masks are among them. Its only drawbacks (which it shares with nylon) are its susceptibility to moisture and the requirement for a high print temperature.