Friday, 19 January 2018

3D Printing advice for materials. Tips & tricks - Advent 2017 review of models


Review and overview Video of the December 2017 advent calendar - modular Christmas tree
3D Printing advice, tips and tricks.

For every day of December 2017 I 3D Printed a part of the 2017 Advent Christmas Tree.

For the background and introduction - Day #1 Post click here

Christmas Advent 2017 Download on Thingiverse here - designed by Tom Van den Bon  With some help for each day by the South African Makers team.

Below is an overview video that will help you pinpoint any specific materials you may want to know more about. Printing advice, tricks and tips are included on each blog post during December 2017.

You can also watch this video in full HD, and many more from me over on YouTube Here

For a quick jump point and an overview of each day, see the list below -

Quick jump index For Blog posts each day and video times -
Day 1 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-2017-day-1.html
2:48 - Fireplace - Designed by - Shaun Nadan

Day 2 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-2017-day-2.html
3:33 - Mini Spool - Designed by - Tom Van den Bon

Day 3 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-2017-day-3.html
4:46 - Christmas Rubber Ducky - Designed by - Andries Smuts

Day 4 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-2017-day-4.html
5:26 - Christmas Lollipop - Designed by - Tom Van den Bon

Day 5 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-2017-day-5.html
6:02 - Christmas Robot - Designed by - Lelanie Smuts

Day 6 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-2017-day-6.html
6:30 - Christmas Stocking - Designed by - Candice Howe

Day 7 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-advice-day.html
7:17 - Water Bottle Rocket - Designed by - Andries Smuts

Day 8 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-advice-day_9.html
7:53 - Beemo - Designed by - Rick Treweek

Day 9 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-advice-day_10.html
9:12 - Trumpet - Designed by - Candice Howe

Day 10 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-advice-day_11.html
10:10 - Manger - Designed by - Michael Scholtz

Day 11 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-day-11.html
10:33 - Potjie - Designed by - Megesh Govender

Day 12 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-days-12-13.html
11:51 - Christmas Raptor - Designed by - Gerhardt Breedt

Day 13 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-days-12-13.html
12:40 - Crate of Beer - Designed by - Andries Smuts

Day 14 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-day-14.html
13:09 - Lego Block - Designed by - Tom Van den Bon

Day 15 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-day-15.html
13:24 - Severed Foot - Designed by - Thomas Torr

Day 16 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-day-16.html
13:40 - Mistletoe/Holly - Designed by -Candice Howe

Day 17 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-day-17.html
14:04 - xmas Poo Emoji - Designed by - Shaun Nadan

Day 18 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-day-18.html
14:31 - Popsicle (Ice Lolly) - Designed by - Tom Van den Bon

Day 19 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-day-19.html
14:53 - Jeep - Designed by - Gerhardt Breedt

Day 20 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-day-20.html
15:31 - Benchy - Designed by - P.J Prinsloo

Day 21 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-day-21.html
15:51 - Abstract Apple - Designed by - Mohammed Hassen

Day 22 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-day-22.html
16:17 - xmas Scene - Designed by - Shaun Nadan

Day 23 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-day-23-24.html
16:45 - Heart Box - Designed by - Chris Venter

Day 24 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-day-23-24.html
17:27 - The Grinch - Designed by - Shaun Nadan

Day 25 – https://richrap.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/christmas-advent-3d-printing-christmas.html
17:41 - Christmas Star - Designed by - Tom Van den Bon

Very special thanks to Tom Van den Bon and the South African makers team

Completed Advent 2017 tree 

The original advent calendar from 2012 is on Thingiverse - designed by Peter Leppik.

Thanks for reading, see you next time.

Rich.

Please join me on Twitter @RichRap3D

My profile and posts over on Google+

Files and designs shared on YouMagine

Files and designs shared on GitHub

Files and designs shared on Repables 

My Youtube channel is here, all 3D Printing and Hi-Def video content.


Monday, 25 December 2017

Christmas Advent 3D Printing - Christmas Day

Merry Christmas

*Day #25*

Have a fantastic & fun filled day everyone


Completed - Magic !


Christmas Day - Star in Glow-in-the-dark PLA from Prusa Research.

Green RepRap logo, Blue OSHW logo and purple text in Fillamentum PLA's


Yes, it does glow!


Vital stats of 2017 advent tree - 

Total printed weight = 2.23kg

Total filament length used = 696.9m

Height of finished tree (including the star) = 723mm tall


Thank you all for reading and being part of this advent series with me, see you all very soon.

Richard Horne & Family

@RichRap3D

Sunday, 24 December 2017

Christmas Advent 3D Printing #Day 23 & 24 Advice using Taulman t-glase PETT filament

December advent calendar - modular Christmas tree
3D Printing advice #Day 23 & 24

For the background and introduction - Day #1 Post click here

Day #22 (Christmas scene) was printed in Polyalchemy natural *snow white

Christmas Advent 2017 Download on Thingiverse here - designed by Tom Van den Bon  With some help for each day by the South African Makers team.


It's time for Days #23 and 24

Day 23 gift is designed by Chris Venter -  It's a Heart box printed in Ruby Red Taulman3D t-glase (Red Star).

Day 24 gift is designed by Shaun Nadan -  It's a Grinch

Yes! I finally get to use t-glase, this model is perfect printed in t-glase Red Star.


Days 23 & 24 tree sections are printed in Polyalchemy Elixir.


Small rolls, but amazing filament.


t-glase from Taulman3D is one of my all time favourite materials to use. I always have some stock for projects like this. It shines and shimmers and can be used for LED light guides or just to look beautiful. 
Taulman t-glase with a Red laser beam catching the front edge.

t-glase is a PETT based material. You are more often likely to find PETG (Glycol modified) versions of polyester (polyethylene) being sold by many manufacturers.


Both PETT and PETG can print very nicely in 3D printers, I tend to use PETT for high optical clarity, bigger layers and anything using light or for beautiful objects & gifts in general. 

I will use PETG for large strong functional parts, you can get a semi-clear finish with PETG, some formulations can produce reasonable optical clarity with the right settings and nozzle size.


Back-lit with a small white led - t-glase really shines (concentric infill - see below)

For this heart I'm keeping to a chunky layer height, and a specific infill type.

Left shows traditional rectilinear infill, and right shows a concentric infill.

It's worth thinking about the first bottom layer for objects like the heart box. The lid will be the bottom face when assembled, so you want that to look as nice as possible.

Likewise, the heart box bottom is also using a concentric infill. Look at those chunky 0.3mm layers, they look amazing on an object like this.

I also printed the final gift in the tree - Day 24 - The Grinch.

I have absolutely no idea how the yellow overhang worked. This had no support and should have failed at this point, but when I came back after switching materials, it was done and asking for the next colour! I can only think it must be some Christmas Magic?

Days 23 and 24 completed.


Print advice - (Taulman t-glase - PETT material)

What settings did you use? - t-glase needs some odd slicing setting. I will talk about a few, but as they are an odd mix of tricks and balance, I'll also include the Slic3r settings I use to help you tune t-glase perfectly.

0.3mm layers (0.4mm nozzle) work really well with t-glase / 5 top and bottom solid layers.

Use an infill of under 25% to get the best optical clarity from t-glase - Using honeycomb is also important, you need an infill that does not cross over line-fill paths. (honeycomb is ideal)
Finally I'm using concentric for top and bottom layers, but that is because of the object here, you can use rectilinear if more appropriate.

Balanced with the temperature I use, you need a relatively slow speed to get the best from t-glase
Especially the first layer, you want that to be neat and tidy for this object.

Make the extrusion widths around the same size as the actual nozzle size. Normally you would go slightly bigger.

250 degrees C - it will print lower and hotter, but for the speed balance, this will give clear (not frosty) results during printing.
80 Degrees C heated bed.

This is a really important one, don;t use too much fan cooling for t-glase. Max 40% unless bridging.

Finally, this is the really odd one - For a 0.4mm nozzle you need to tell Slic3r it's 0.45mm in diameter - with all the other settings above, this produces great results.
You can go to the same layer height as nozzle size for t-glase (here we could go 0.4 layer with 0.4 nozzle)

Why use it? - It's just one of the most clear and optically interesting filaments you can get. It's also a very strong material, with great layer bonding, so making objects to use, enjoy and give as gifts is high on the list of ideal uses.


Is it strong? - Yes, it's very tough, impact resistant and just a tiny bit of flex.

Is it easy to use/print - Yes, as long as you spend time tuning the speed, temperature and odd nozzle settings I have shown above.

Do you have to dry it before/after use? - Not really, but I do dry it out before use if I want the very best clarity or optical performance. Keep it dry / sealed etc.

Do i need a 'special' nozzle? - No it's not abrasive at all. All nozzles seem to work well, Bigger nozzles are glorious with t-glase. Just try it with a 1.2mm nozzle and a 1.0mm layer height, it's astonishing.

Does it smell when printing? - No.

Does it come on a eco friendly spool? - No :( They are usual Taulman micro-spools, can be tricky to mount as they don't have a 'standard' 52mm mount hole.

Conclusion for Taulman t-glase -  If you have not tried it out yet, you are missing out. From the very first sucesful print, you will be hooked. It also not comes in more colours, that I'm going to get hold of in the New Year. It's in my top 5 list of most useful and great looking materials.


Olsson Ruby Nozzle check - 

I thought it would be good to check on the Ruby Nozzle at this point.

Olsson Ruby nozzle after ~387 Hours of printing (not cleaned)

The ruby is looking perfect! no surface wear and hole size is still 0.4mm

This was how it looked originally (still in the box)

I just removed the nozzle (when it was at full 260 Degrees C temperature). It has not been cleaned in the image above. In the image below the same nozzle has been cleaned and refitted.

'Cleaned' and fitted back into the Hot-end for another print run - I'll check again in 1500 hours.


Print time check - 

I installed this first Olsson Ruby nozzle in the summer of 2017. I reset the firmware timer at that point to keep track of the total print hours. This nozzle has now clocked up 16days 3hours 48mins.

That's around 387 hours of constant print time with almost every single type of material I have.

1.32km of filament length (1.75mm) is also around 4.2kg of filament so far.

To put this figure of 387 total hours of Ruby nozzle print time into context, this entire advent Christmas tree - printed on this Prusa i3, the Lulzbot TAZ6 (also fitted with a Ruby high-flow Nozzle) and one print made on the Sigma R17 was a total print time of - 139.5 Hours.

This splits into the following -
All Advent gifts = 44 Hours 20 minutes total print time (Excluding the top star)
Sigma Dual print (Jeep) = 2.43mins
Top star = 5.5 Hours - check tomorrows post to see that :)

All Tree sections = 88 Hours (including top tree section for star)

2/3 of all parts were done on the Prusa i3 MK2 with a V6 Olsson Ruby Nozzle fitted (0.4mm).
1/3 of all parts were done on the LulzBot Taz6 with the High-flow V6 (Volcano) nozzle fitted (0.6mm)
1 part was printed on the Sigma.

The Olsson Ruby (Volcano) nozzle in the TAZ6 has only had around 50 hours of use, so I'll check the status at around 300 Hours.

Remember this Advent tree is scaled at 150% of the original files posted. The tree sections are also scaled at 150% but only 120% in depth (to make the gifts appear to pop-out more).

Can you guess the total weight of the finished advent 2017 tree? (and also how much filament has been used)? And also how tall the finished tree is?

Send me a tweet over on Twitter @RichRap3D with your guess. I'll post the weight and filament used in tomorrows post.

Days 1 to 24 of the Advent Christmas Tree.

Today story is simply about making beautiful objects with 3D printing. What I have now is another wonderful, creative and exciting advent Christmas tree, full of stories and interesting materials. We still get out the original 2012 advent tree every year. Now we have this one too. 

I want to thank all the South African makers and designers for this amazing Christmas gift. it was a real pleasure to print these parts. I also hope you also learned some neat things to try yourself.

Christmas Day tomorrow. Have fun.

Thanks for reading and Merry Christmas everyone.

Rich.

Please join me on Twitter @RichRap3D

My profile and posts over on Google+

Files and designs shared on YouMagine

Files and designs shared on GitHub

Files and designs shared on Repables 

My Youtube channel is here, all 3D Printing and Hi-Def video content.

Saturday, 23 December 2017

Christmas Advent 3D Printing #Day 22 using Polyalchemy Elixir snow white Filament

December advent calendar - modular Christmas tree
3D Printing advice #Day 22

For the background and introduction - Day #1 Post click here

Christmas Advent 2017 Download on Thingiverse here - designed by Tom Van den Bon  With some help for each day by the South African Makers team.


It's time for Day #22

Day 22 gift is designed by Shaun Nadan-  It's a Christmas Scene.

Christmas scene is printed in Polyalchemy Elixir Natural (snow white).

I was really happy with the print quality, 0.15mm layers, normal PLA settings

This is a very small model, so the details really came out well.

I was originally intending to print this snow scene in Laybrick (By Kai Parthy) filament. But my roll of Laybrick is around 4 or so years old now, and it has become brittle and unusable :(

My Laybrick filament is no longer usable (around 4 years old).

Laybrick is about the closest to 'snow' look, and even texture, you are likely to get in a filament. It has powdered chalk as the filler. Prints like sandstone, cold and oddly both smooth and rough at the same time to the touch. It's a little like using plaster or clay.

I will get another roll of Laybrick and show you what it can do at some point in 2018. Until then I have used the wonderful Polyalchemy Elixir, for a shining version of this Christmas snow scene.




I was going to tell you all about Laybrick, but I'll save that for a future post. Just one quick thing to note if you try any Laybrick materials. Do be careful what print surface you use. It can bond quite strongly to PEI, Tufnol and even coated glass. I have damaged a few heated bed / coatings using Laybrick, take care.


Days 1 to 22 of the Advent Christmas Tree. 

Day #22 is completed. We are in to the final countdown very shortly. 

The story, or maybe the moral of the story today is to use materials as soon as you can. Many filament's can become brittle or unusable over considerable time. My Laybrick was a casualty of not remembering, that I still had a roll at the very bottom of the filament storage box.

Join me next time for Day #23 - I'm also going to update you on the status of the Olsson Ruby nozzles. I plan to remove them, and inspect how they are holding up. Join me next time to find out.

Thanks for reading.

Rich.

Please join me on Twitter @RichRap3D

My profile and posts over on Google+

Files and designs shared on YouMagine

Files and designs shared on GitHub

Files and designs shared on Repables 

My Youtube channel is here, all 3D Printing and Hi-Def video content.

Friday, 22 December 2017

Christmas Advent 3D Printing #Day 21 Advice using Fillamentum Flexfill

December advent calendar - modular Christmas tree
3D Printing advice #Day 21

For the background and introduction - Day #1 Post click here

Christmas Advent 2017 Download on Thingiverse here - designed by Tom Van den Bon  With some help for each day by the South African Makers team.


It's time for Day #21

Day 21 gift is designed by Mohammed Hassen -  It's an abstract apple.

Abstract apple in Fillamentum Flexfill 98A luminous green material.


Day 21 tree section is printed in Polyalchemy Elixir.


Wikipedia has a great page all about the short durometer scale (testing the hardness of a material).

It's useful to know what level of 'soft/hard' material you are buying, before you choose for a particular project. Here I'm using Flexfill 98A (Shore hardness 98A or 60D).

You can see below that a shore hardeness of 98A indicates a level similar to 'hard wheels of roller skates / skateboards'

Flexfill is also available in 92A. This is a little softer, but nothing like a soft stretchy rubber band.

Flexfill is ideal for projects like model car racing wheels, textured grips on products, handles etc. It's also great for robot parts that need some flex, but also keep their shape under loads.


Source - Wikipedia page



Fillamentum Flexfill 98A has a firm, but flexible finish, bends well, but holds shape and form.


Print advice - (Fillamentum 98A) & Just go 30% slower for 92A

What settings did you use? - Flexfill 98A is very forgiving with settings, it's not as easy to use as PLA, but much easier (in a lot of extruder systems) than many softer rubber materials. 
  • You don't always need a heated bed, but it works well with 50 Degrees C PEI surface, thinly covered in gluestick or Magigoo.
  • First layer speed set to 55% of normal print speed.
  • Minimum of 2 perimeter (shells) if using a 0.4mm nozzle
  • 222 Degrees C first layer.
  • 233 Degrees C all other layers.
  • Fans off for first few layers.
  • Fan at 55% max for printing (normal 25%)
  • +35% extra Extruder retraction length (from normal PLA settings).
  • I never use a BRIM, because it's just to tricky to remove, and is not required.
  • Print speed of 10mm/sec to 60mm/sec depending on your extruder setup. On an i3 MK2 55mm/sec is fine.
  • Try not to use support, you will find it almost impossible to remove without a very sharp knife.
Why use it? - It's perfect for anything that needs a slightly firmer rubber application. I use it a lot for seals, gaskets and generally any sort of rubber washer or firm grip / texture on a product. Things like gasket seals work well because they are not floppy, but do compress and seal faces together.

Is it strong? - Yes, it's very tough, you will find it very hard to rip, and if you ever need to modify it, only a very sharp knife or heating / deform works. It's hard to snip, cut with scissors and you can;t file or sand it.

Is it easy to use/print - Yes, the biggest issue is going to be stringing, use extra extruder retraction and tune to the speed you indent to print.

Do you have to dry it before/after use? - No - it should be good from the sealed pack, but keep it dry.

Do i need a 'special' nozzle? - No it's not abrasive at all. All nozzles seem to work well, smaller ones may cause pressure problems with some extruder systems.

Does it smell when printing? - No.

Does it come on a eco friendly spool? - No :( They are generic clear plastic spools, but they do have a recycle logo. I could not make out what material they are made of.

Conclusion for Fillamentum Flexfill 98A- I's a great material to have along side others. You can combine it well with PLA, ABS or PET. You are likely to be using it for some sort of flexing, or model making. It's obviously perfect for many model tyre projects. Check out the OpenRC project for more on that aspect.

On Day 16 I also used a different and much softer flexible material, do also check that out if you are interested in printing in flexible filaments.


Days 1 to 21 of the Advent Christmas Tree. I have no more room here, so it's going to be moved to somewhere in the house for the final few days of Advent.

Day #21 is completed. 

Today lets focus the story around the physical uses of different materials in products and applications. It's easy to forget that not everything made is hard plastic or metal. Soft plastic's, rubbers and elastic components make up a lot of products. Especially with things that move or need to form around other devices. Thinking back to my days of being a child at Christmas, if I had a way to print new rubber tyres, skateboard wheels and soft-grips I would have been delighted to receive a roll of Flexfill :)

Okay, maybe I just wanted the skateboard, but now I would totally 3D Print some awesome custom wheels for it.

Join me next time for Day #22

Thanks for reading.

Rich.

Please join me on Twitter @RichRap3D

My profile and posts over on Google+

Files and designs shared on YouMagine

Files and designs shared on GitHub

Files and designs shared on Repables 

My Youtube channel is here, all 3D Printing and Hi-Def video content.

Thursday, 21 December 2017

Christmas Advent 3D Printing #Day 20 Advice using Colorfabb corkFill

December advent calendar - modular Christmas tree
3D Printing advice #Day 20

For the background and introduction - Day #1 Post click here

Christmas Advent 2017 Download on Thingiverse here - designed by Tom Van den Bon  With some help for each day by the South African Makers team.


It's time for Day #20

Day 20 gift is designed by P.J Prinsloo -  Is a scaled version of the Benchy boat



The benchy is a boat, it wants to float, so why not 3D print it with cork?

ColorFabb corkFill - 

I really like cork, not just this filament, but in general. It's a fantastic material.

Cork is a natural product. It's also sustainable and ecologically friendly, being harvested over-and-over from the bark, not from cutting down trees. The cork industry has suffered over the last 10+ years because most wine bottles now use screw tops or plastic stoppers. Cork was and still is a better product.


Luckily cork is still used in many products, now including 3D printing materials.

Colorfabb corkFill is a filled wood-like material. It has powdered calk in a PLA/PHA base material. corkFill is one of my top special materials (along with bambooFill) It's easy to use and gives a really nice finish, it's quite unlike almost all other wood filament materials.

Ironically corkFill actually has hard 'stiff' finish to the printed model. Most other wood or fiber filled materials tend to have a slightly soft 'wood' feel, CorkFill feels more like normal PLA.

Benchy Printed with a 0.4mm Olsson Ruby Nozzle - 0.2mm layers at 215 Deg C Nozzle temp

Like other wood filaments, temperature does change the colour of the finish, slowing down during a print can make the finish uneven, so be aware of that or change to a more constant extrusion speed.

You get a nice sandy finish and it's less likely to string, blob or show defects than most other woodFill materials.



You can flame-finish it to remove any fine whiskers. it's also easy to sand, drill, paint etc.


Print advice - (ColorFabb corkFill)

What settings did you use? - 
Use it like normal PLA but with a slightly increased temperature of 215 to 220 Degrees C (hotter will give a darker finish), cork has some insulating properties and can handle a higher extrusion temperature than plain PLA.

You can add a little to the extruder retraction if you are seeing any stringing or angel-hair. And a slight over-extrusion rate of +10% helps get a really great finish.

Why use it? - It's a sensual material, feels hard but looks soft, warm and has a nice colour tone. It's simply a really nice material to use, display and incorporate into projects. (something like a hand grip for example - and it really looks great combined with a metalFill material like copper or bronze)

It also floats, surprise! ;)

Is it strong? - Yes, it feels and acts like normal PLA/PHA filament.

Is it easy to use/print - Really simple, just follow the advice above, and you should be good. It should be called 'easyWood'.

Do you have to dry it before/after use? - No, It's not bothered at all with moisture, but as usual keep it in a sealed bag, that'll keep the dust off while not in use.

Do i need a 'special' nozzle? - No it's not abrasive at all.

Does it smell when printing? - Yes, it lightly smells. But for once I like the smell when printing, it's wood, but quite a soft scent.

Does it come on a eco friendly spool? - No :( They are the ColorFabb Clear PC spools at the moment.

Conclusion for ColorFabb corkFill - It's a great wood like material. Strong, solid and not so much like spongy cork, but easy to use and enjoy. I like handing someone a corkFill object, but the don't often guess what it's made from.


Days 1 to 20 of the Advent Christmas Tree.

Day #20 is completed. 

Today's story, when anyone asks about the little brown boat in Day 20, will be about developing, making and using sustainable materials in the 3D printing process.

As I type this, ColorFabb also has corkFill on Christmas offer, along with other materials, so you can snap up a roll for 24.75 euro's (ex tax). That's a good deal.

Join me next time for Day #21

Thanks for reading.

Rich.

Please join me on Twitter @RichRap3D

My profile and posts over on Google+

Files and designs shared on YouMagine

Files and designs shared on GitHub

Files and designs shared on Repables 

My Youtube channel is here, all 3D Printing and Hi-Def video content.