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The Ins and Outs of 3D Printer Filament Selection

3D printing technology has revolutionised the manufacturing industry, and its popularity is rising in Australia. The right filament selection has become increasingly crucial with the increasing demand for 3D printing services. The filament extruder is the backbone of the 3D printing process, and choosing the right filament is necessary for producing high-quality 3D printed objects. Here are the following 3D printer filaments you can consider:

TPE/TPU/TPC (Thermoplastic Elastomer/Polyurethane/Copolyester)

TPE, TPU, and TPC are all thermoplastic elastomers, meaning they are polymers with both plastic and rubber-like properties. They are made from a blend of different materials designed to give them flexibility and strength, making them excellent choices for printing objects that need to bend, stretch, and withstand wear and tear.

Aside from that, these filaments come in various colours and are perfect for creating toys, phone cases, or anything that requires a rubber-like feel. They are also suitable for printing objects that require high strength levels, such as replacement parts or prototypes.

PLA (Polylactic Acid)

PLA is a thermoplastic polymer developed from renewable resources such as corn starch, sugarcane, and cassava root. It is biodegradable, compostable, and non-toxic, making it an excellent choice for environmentally-conscious 3D printing enthusiasts.

Furthermore, PLA is relatively easy to print with and has a lower melting point than other materials, such as ABS, which makes it more suitable for 3D printing beginners. They are perfect for printing objects that require intricate details, such as figurines or jewellery.

PC (Polycarbonate)

If you prefer a strong and durable filament, polycarbonate (PC) might be your material. It is a thermoplastic polymer commonly used in engineering and industrial applications due to its high impact resistance, heat resistance, and toughness. 

However, PC is more difficult to print with than PLA and requires a higher printing temperature. Nonetheless, it has a higher melting point and can withstand higher temperatures after printing.

ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene)

ABS filament has become prevalent due to its strength, flexibility, and durability. It is commonly used to produce toys, automotive parts, and household appliances. ABS is also resistant to heat and impact, making it a popular choice for printing objects exposed to wear and tear.

PA (Polyamide or Nylon)

If versatility is your top priority, PA or Nylon filament is the way to go. It is a durable, strong, and flexible material that can produce objects with intricate details and designs.

Nylon is also resistant to wear and tear, making it ideal for creating objects subjected to friction or stress. Furthermore, it is suitable for printing objects that require high strength-to-weight ratios, such as gears, bearings, and mechanical parts. 

ASA (Acrylonitrile Styrene Acrylate)

ASA filaments are great for printing objects that must withstand harsh environments and weather conditions, as they resist UV rays and weather. These filaments can also resist high temperatures, making them ideal for creating objects that require heat resistance. In addition, ASA filaments are available in many colours and are perfect for printing objects that need to be strong and durable.

Final Thoughts

Understanding the properties of different filaments and their suitability for various applications is crucial. Each of them has its unique characteristics, advantages, and limitations. By selecting the right filament for your project, you can achieve the desired results and create exceptional 3D-printed objects.

Elevate your printing experience with 3D APAC’s cutting-edge filament extruder. Our state-of-the-art technology ensures the highest-quality filaments for your printing needs. We also offer top-notch 3D printing services, providing you with the expertise and resources to bring your ideas to life. Contact us today to learn more about our innovative solutions.