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  2. The level of detail an SLA/DLP printer can produce is dependent on the laser spot size and resin properties. There are general guidelines for designing for SLA/DLP printing. Print features The level of detail an SLA printer can produce is dependent on the laser spot size and resin properties. General guidelines for designing for SLA are as follows: Feature Description Supported walls - Walls that are connected to other structures on at least two sides, so they have very little chance of warping. These should be designed at a minimum of 0.4 mm thick. Unsupported walls - Walls that are connected to the rest of the print on less than two sides, and are at a very high chance for warping or detaching from the print. These walls must be at least 0.6 mm thick and should be designed with filleted bases (where the wall connects to the rest of the print) to reduce stress concentrations along the joint. Overhangs - Pose very little issue with SLA printing, unless the model is being printed without adequate internal and external support structures. Printing without supports often leads to warping of the print, but if printing without supports is necessary, any unsupported overhangs must be kept less than 1.0 mm in length and at least 19° from level. Embossed details (including text) - Any features on the model that are raised slightly above the surfaces around them. These must be at least 0.1 mm in height above the surface of the print to ensure the details will be visible. Engraved details (including text) - Any features which are imprinted or recessed into the model. These details are at risk of fusing with the rest of the model while printing if they are too small, so these details must be at least 0.4 mm wide and at least 0.4 mm thick (distance from surface of the model to recessed detail). Horizontal bridges - Bridges between two points on a model can be successfully printed, but the designer must keep in mind that wider bridges must be kept shorter (less than 21 mm) than thin bridges. Wider bridges have a greater z-axis area of contact increasing the chance of print failure during peeling. Holes - Holes with a diameter less than 0.5mm in the x, y, and z axes may close off during printing. Connections: 0.5mm clearance between moving parts. 0.2mm clearance for assembly connections. 0.1mm clearance will give a push or snug fit. Resolution SLA is able to achieve much higher resolutions than FDM because it uses a laser to solidify the material. SLA printing resolution in the XY-direction (or horizontal resolution) is dependent upon the laser spot size and can range anywhere from 30 to 140 microns. This is not an adjustable parameter of printing. The minimum feature size cannot be smaller than the laser spot size. Resolution in the Z-direction (or vertical resolution) varies from 25 to 200 microns. Choosing vertical resolution is a trade-off between speed and quality. For a part that has few curves or fine details, there will be little visual difference between a print at 25 microns versus a print at 100 microns. By comparison, a desktop FDM machine will typically print z-axis layers at 150 to 400 microns. Hollowing and cupping SLA machines print a solid, dense model but if the print is not intended to be a functional part hollowing the model significantly reduces the amount of material needed as well as print time. It is recommended that the walls of the hollowed print be at least 2 mm thick to reduce the risk of failure during printing. If printing a hollow part, drainage holes must be added to prevent uncured resin from getting trapped inside the final print. This uncured resin creates pressure imbalances within the hollow chamber, and will cause what is known as “cupping”. Small failures (cracks/holes) propagate throughout the part and will cause complete failure, or part explosion, if not corrected. Drain holes should be at least 3.5 mm in diameter, and at least one hole must be included per hollow section. Rules of thumb SLA is ideal for small parts that require a smooth surface finish (comparable to injection molding) and a high level of accuracy. Support structures are critical to successfully printing accurate SLA parts. If a good finish is required on a surface the part should be orientated so that that surface is not in contact with support material (typically upwards facing). SLA parts typically have poor mechanical properties and are best suited for non-functional prototyping, enclosures and visual models. Feature Design specifications Supported walls At least 0.4 mm thick. Unsupported walls At least 0.6 mm thick Overhangs Less than 1.0 mm in length and at least 19° from level. Embossed details At least 0.1 mm in height Engraved details At least 0.4 mm wide and 0.4 mm thick Connections 0.2mm for assembly connections and 0.1mm for snug fit Holes Minimum diameter of 0.5mm View full article
  3. Print features The level of detail an SLA printer can produce is dependent on the laser spot size and resin properties. General guidelines for designing for SLA are as follows: Feature Description Supported walls - Walls that are connected to other structures on at least two sides, so they have very little chance of warping. These should be designed at a minimum of 0.4 mm thick. Unsupported walls - Walls that are connected to the rest of the print on less than two sides, and are at a very high chance for warping or detaching from the print. These walls must be at least 0.6 mm thick and should be designed with filleted bases (where the wall connects to the rest of the print) to reduce stress concentrations along the joint. Overhangs - Pose very little issue with SLA printing, unless the model is being printed without adequate internal and external support structures. Printing without supports often leads to warping of the print, but if printing without supports is necessary, any unsupported overhangs must be kept less than 1.0 mm in length and at least 19° from level. Embossed details (including text) - Any features on the model that are raised slightly above the surfaces around them. These must be at least 0.1 mm in height above the surface of the print to ensure the details will be visible. Engraved details (including text) - Any features which are imprinted or recessed into the model. These details are at risk of fusing with the rest of the model while printing if they are too small, so these details must be at least 0.4 mm wide and at least 0.4 mm thick (distance from surface of the model to recessed detail). Horizontal bridges - Bridges between two points on a model can be successfully printed, but the designer must keep in mind that wider bridges must be kept shorter (less than 21 mm) than thin bridges. Wider bridges have a greater z-axis area of contact increasing the chance of print failure during peeling. Holes - Holes with a diameter less than 0.5mm in the x, y, and z axes may close off during printing. Connections: 0.5mm clearance between moving parts. 0.2mm clearance for assembly connections. 0.1mm clearance will give a push or snug fit. Resolution SLA is able to achieve much higher resolutions than FDM because it uses a laser to solidify the material. SLA printing resolution in the XY-direction (or horizontal resolution) is dependent upon the laser spot size and can range anywhere from 30 to 140 microns. This is not an adjustable parameter of printing. The minimum feature size cannot be smaller than the laser spot size. Resolution in the Z-direction (or vertical resolution) varies from 25 to 200 microns. Choosing vertical resolution is a trade-off between speed and quality. For a part that has few curves or fine details, there will be little visual difference between a print at 25 microns versus a print at 100 microns. By comparison, a desktop FDM machine will typically print z-axis layers at 150 to 400 microns. Hollowing and cupping SLA machines print a solid, dense model but if the print is not intended to be a functional part hollowing the model significantly reduces the amount of material needed as well as print time. It is recommended that the walls of the hollowed print be at least 2 mm thick to reduce the risk of failure during printing. If printing a hollow part, drainage holes must be added to prevent uncured resin from getting trapped inside the final print. This uncured resin creates pressure imbalances within the hollow chamber, and will cause what is known as “cupping”. Small failures (cracks/holes) propagate throughout the part and will cause complete failure, or part explosion, if not corrected. Drain holes should be at least 3.5 mm in diameter, and at least one hole must be included per hollow section. Rules of thumb SLA is ideal for small parts that require a smooth surface finish (comparable to injection molding) and a high level of accuracy. Support structures are critical to successfully printing accurate SLA parts. If a good finish is required on a surface the part should be orientated so that that surface is not in contact with support material (typically upwards facing). SLA parts typically have poor mechanical properties and are best suited for non-functional prototyping, enclosures and visual models. Feature Design specifications Supported walls At least 0.4 mm thick. Unsupported walls At least 0.6 mm thick Overhangs Less than 1.0 mm in length and at least 19° from level. Embossed details At least 0.1 mm in height Engraved details At least 0.4 mm wide and 0.4 mm thick Connections 0.2mm for assembly connections and 0.1mm for snug fit Holes Minimum diameter of 0.5mm
  4. As a digital designer, I knew if I wanted to be able to take my ZBrush sculptures into the real world, I needed a high-resolution printer that could capture the fine details of my sculpts so I could use my prints as masters for molding or directly as one-off production prototypes. We invited designer and digital sculptor Jeremy Ortiz (@zbrushninja) to share his top tips on modeling for the Form 1+ 3D printer. I come from a traditional sculpting background using clay and wax. For me, using ZBrush simulates sculpting in these traditional materials so well that nearly of my traditional skills and techniques were directly translated into the digital medium. I was instantly hooked on this new medium of digital clay. As a digital designer, I knew if I wanted to be able to take my ZBrush sculptures into the real world, I needed a high-resolution printer that could capture the fine details of my sculpts so I could use my prints as masters for molding or directly as one-off production prototypes. The Form 1+ is the only desktop 3D printer that offers a level of detail that could effectively and accurately reproduce my sculptures with a superior level of detail and quality that was on par with industrial stereolithography printers. All of that with a cost that was within my budget. Dragon Bust by Jeremy Ortiz, 3D printed in Grey Resin on the Form 1 +. It wasn’t until I was holding a 20mm tall dragon head print in my hand, with details so fine that it made pencil points, X-acto blades and fingerprints seems huge that it hit me just how powerful of a tool I had in my possession. Here are 7 tips I have found helpful when designing and modeling for 3D prints. I personally use ZBrush and Maya for my work, but these tips should work on most 3D modeling software. 1. Keep Your Parts Manifold For modelers coming from animation, illustration, or gaming backgrounds, one important thing to remember is that your 3D prints must be composed of watertight manifold volume parts. Always check your model for artifacts, loose faces or unwelding edges and verts. That means: - No one dimensional planes,shells or extruded edges - No double sided faces - No self intersecting faces - No open faced holes - No unwelded verts or edges PreForm, Formlabs’ free downloadable 3D printing software, has automatic tools that ensures your model is watertight. 2. Multi-object Prints Does my part need to be one continuous mesh? This is a question that many new modelers have when creating for 3D printing. The simple answer is that a continuous mesh is not required. You can design prints from overlapping or intersecting objects so long as all components involved are manifold parts. 3. Know Your Build Area When designing your part, keep in mind your build area. However, your printer’s build volume does not have to limit the size of your final model. Be creative! Clever layout in your build area can help you get larger prints. For instance, the diagonal space from top to bottom in your build area will give you the longest build size of your printer. 4. Small prints and exaggerated details When sculpting small parts, it’s often very helpful to slightly exaggerate details. This means making your surface details with slightly deeper cuts and more pronounced surface texture. If possible, making slender parts slightly thicker will help ensure that they will print clean. 5. Save Material Making your model hollow using shell and boolean functions available in your modeling software will save you resin material. Be sure to make a large enough “vent hole” that connects to your hollowed area to the outside of your model this will allow uncured material to flow out. 6. Clean Up Well After your print is finished you have to soak your finished print in IPA for 12-15 minutes. I find that towards the end of the soak you can give your part a gentle rubdown with your gloved hand to help break down and remove any resin stuck to the surface of your print. Using a soft brush also helps to reach area that you can’t reach with your hand, this added step this helps get a quality finish to your print. 7. Remove Supports Carefully Take your time when removing your support material. Rushing this process could ruin an otherwise flawless print. Using an X-acto knife to score a line at the connection point will give a cleaner break. Give thicker supports a gentle wiggle, don’t pull or use excessive force. Original Article Reference: Modeling for 3D Printing: Tips by Jeremy Ortiz View full article
  5. We invited designer and digital sculptor Jeremy Ortiz (@zbrushninja) to share his top tips on modeling for the Form 1+ 3D printer. I come from a traditional sculpting background using clay and wax. For me, using ZBrush simulates sculpting in these traditional materials so well that nearly of my traditional skills and techniques were directly translated into the digital medium. I was instantly hooked on this new medium of digital clay. As a digital designer, I knew if I wanted to be able to take my ZBrush sculptures into the real world, I needed a high-resolution printer that could capture the fine details of my sculpts so I could use my prints as masters for molding or directly as one-off production prototypes. The Form 1+ is the only desktop 3D printer that offers a level of detail that could effectively and accurately reproduce my sculptures with a superior level of detail and quality that was on par with industrial stereolithography printers. All of that with a cost that was within my budget. Dragon Bust by Jeremy Ortiz, 3D printed in Grey Resin on the Form 1 +. It wasn’t until I was holding a 20mm tall dragon head print in my hand, with details so fine that it made pencil points, X-acto blades and fingerprints seems huge that it hit me just how powerful of a tool I had in my possession. Here are 7 tips I have found helpful when designing and modeling for 3D prints. I personally use ZBrush and Maya for my work, but these tips should work on most 3D modeling software. 1. Keep Your Parts Manifold For modelers coming from animation, illustration, or gaming backgrounds, one important thing to remember is that your 3D prints must be composed of watertight manifold volume parts. Always check your model for artifacts, loose faces or unwelding edges and verts. That means: - No one dimensional planes,shells or extruded edges - No double sided faces - No self intersecting faces - No open faced holes - No unwelded verts or edges PreForm, Formlabs’ free downloadable 3D printing software, has automatic tools that ensures your model is watertight. 2. Multi-object Prints Does my part need to be one continuous mesh? This is a question that many new modelers have when creating for 3D printing. The simple answer is that a continuous mesh is not required. You can design prints from overlapping or intersecting objects so long as all components involved are manifold parts. 3. Know Your Build Area When designing your part, keep in mind your build area. However, your printer’s build volume does not have to limit the size of your final model. Be creative! Clever layout in your build area can help you get larger prints. For instance, the diagonal space from top to bottom in your build area will give you the longest build size of your printer. 4. Small prints and exaggerated details When sculpting small parts, it’s often very helpful to slightly exaggerate details. This means making your surface details with slightly deeper cuts and more pronounced surface texture. If possible, making slender parts slightly thicker will help ensure that they will print clean. 5. Save Material Making your model hollow using shell and boolean functions available in your modeling software will save you resin material. Be sure to make a large enough “vent hole” that connects to your hollowed area to the outside of your model this will allow uncured material to flow out. 6. Clean Up Well After your print is finished you have to soak your finished print in IPA for 12-15 minutes. I find that towards the end of the soak you can give your part a gentle rubdown with your gloved hand to help break down and remove any resin stuck to the surface of your print. Using a soft brush also helps to reach area that you can’t reach with your hand, this added step this helps get a quality finish to your print. 7. Remove Supports Carefully Take your time when removing your support material. Rushing this process could ruin an otherwise flawless print. Using an X-acto knife to score a line at the connection point will give a cleaner break. Give thicker supports a gentle wiggle, don’t pull or use excessive force. Original Article Reference: Modeling for 3D Printing: Tips by Jeremy Ortiz
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