Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Filament Review #11 - RepRapper Tech UV Reactive PLA

RepRapper Tech 1.75mm UV Reactive PLA



The filament being sampled today is from my 2nd batch of filaments sent as part of Global FSD filament sampler program. This filament is available from Global FSD here, the filament can also be purchased from 3DFilaPrint In a 1kg spool here


So on with the filament sample reviews and today I'm sampling two UV reactive filaments from RepRapper Tech. I wasn't really sure how a UV reactive filament would work nor what sort of effect it would produce but I have to say it came out really well and I have even included a short video of the reaction.

So information regarding this filament is limited in fact I couldn't actually find this filament on the RepRapper Tech website, but it's basically a colour changing filament which is activated under UV light. You are also limited on colours when it comes to this filament with only white to blue and white to purple available. As for printer setting the only recommended setting is print temperature, but as always this is only a guide and I found that 200°C worked well on my printer.

So let's take a look at the filament in it's normal state, I'll save the magic for the end of the review.

UV White to Blue

UV White to Blue

UV White to Purple

UV White to Purple

So you can see that both filaments have a slight colour cast to them and this also shows on the printed model. This filament is available in a 5 meter or 10 meter sample from Global FSD and is available in either 1.75mm or 3.0mm sizes for a cost of between £1.45 - £4.25 + P&P and it is available from 3DFilaPrint as a 1kg spool for £22 with free delivery.

As in other reviews I used Cura to do the slicing and as always I'm printing the popular 3DBenchy model available from Thingiverse.

Below are the setting I used for these 3D Benchy's.

Nozzle size: 0.4mm
Extruder temp: 200°C
Bed temp: 25°C (Kapton with 3 layers of 3D-EEZ (See my last blog post for a review))
Layer height: 0.1905mm 
Shell Thickness: 0.8mm
Top/Bottom layers: 3
Infill: 15%
Cooling: Enabled
Retraction: Enabled Speed: 60mm/s Distance: 1.5mm
Support: None
Flow: 100%
Print speeds: 
  • Print: 48mm/s
  • Bottom layer: 30mm/s
  • Top/Bottom: 50mm/s
  • Travel: 160mm/s
  • Infill: 38mm/s
And here's how it came out.

UV White to Blue

UV White to Blue

UV White to Purple

UV White to Purple

As you can see the prints came out great and the colour change is amazing, but seeing them in a picture isn't the best way to see this filaments amazing trick, so here are some short videos of the colour change.

UV White to Blue

UV White to Purple

To end my review of the RepRapper Tech UV PLA filaments I'm going to summarise a few points I've noted down whilst using the filament. There isn't anything between 2 of the same filament so my thoughts are the same for both of them.
  • Development, Another filament that's not just your normal one colour plastic, 3D printing is becoming more and more exciting, and these specialist filaments are really interesting.
  • Possibilities, This new colour changing filament opens up the possibilities for fun and unusual prints.
  • Cost, For less than £5 you can buy a 10 meter sample, which is plenty for most projects and if you want to print something bigger you can get a 1kg spool for only £22.
So overall I would recommend the RepRapper Tech UV reactive filaments for all users of 3D printers, as it's easy to print with and doesn't required any hardware changes and a normal PLA profile with do for the slicing and I would also recommend RepRapper Tech for their other filaments and Global FSD for the massive range of filaments just waiting to be tried. All the samples that I test are fed into a filament database which you can viewed on the Global FSD website by clicking here.

Thanks for reading and until next time, keep printing.



James.


NEXT ON 3D FILAMENT REVIEWS..... 

RepRapper Tech Glow In The Dark PLA





If any of my readers have some suggestions on ways to achieve better results with prints or on the format of my review please comment below, I'll gladly try out your suggestions.

Saturday, 22 August 2015

Product Review #1 - 3D-EEZ Build Plate Film

3D-EEZ Build Plate Film



This sample size bottle (0.1L) of 3D-EEZ was kindly donated by Tony Gaston from 3D-EEZ and the sample was supplied from the 3D-EEZ's UK office at Cinter Design Ltd.


So what is 3D-EEZ and why would Want to use it?

Well 3D-EEZ is a build plate film, in other words it's a material for your 3D printers bed to aid in print adhesion and print removal, much like Kapton tape, blue painters tape or BuildTak (Which I will be reviewing soon).

As for the why, here's what 3D-EEZ say.

3D-EeZ allows makers and engineers to use a wide range of materials without losing builds to warping, shrinking, or curling. 3D-EeZ has been formulated for use with Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) 3D printers.

3D-EeZ is better for the environment. Tapes and spray-on coatings can only be used a handful of times, at best. 3D-EeZ films have been tested for more than 20 prints per application. One expert user, RichRap, reported up to 120 prints on a single 3D-EeZ film! With better builds, 3D-EeZ leads to less filament material waste by eliminating lifting, curling, and other common FFF build challenges.


  • 3D-EeZ is non-toxic. No aerosols, no harmful vapors, no toxic chemicals.
  • 3D-EeZ provides a flexible solution. You only need to apply 3D-EeZ to the area where you will be building (greater efficiency). If the 3D-EeZ surface becomes damaged, you can repair it with more 3D-EeZ, or by wiping the surface with a damp sponge. You can also remove the film and apply a fresh film of 3D-EeZ. 3D-EeZ can be applied to metal, kapton tape, acrylic or glass build plates.
  • 3D-EeZ is re-usable, but not permanent. Many retrofit, permanent, one-size-fits-all build plate materials have been developed. They all suffer from the same issue: after extended use or in the case of a damaged surface, they need to be replaced. You can print on 3D-EeZ for many, many builds or one build.
  • 3D-EeZ protects your solid build surface (glass, metal, or acrylic) from scratches or damage from an extruder that is too close to the build platform. 3D-EeZ can even improve your print quality on build surfaces that have been damaged.

So how is it applied?

Well to help it's customers Cinter design & 3D-EEZ have made a video on just the subject.


I had a few problems at this point, solely due to my fault. I tried firstly to just lay down 2 layers of 3D-EEZ and then I set my Z axis offset to low, resulting is the print being welded to the bed.

However I cleaned the bed, this was very easy it was just a matter of using a damp cloth and wiping, I then cleaning the bed with acetone and reapplied the 3D-EEZ this time using 3 layers and setting my Z axis offset to the correct height.

What filaments can you print on it?

Well according to the 3D-EEZ website you print the following.

3D-EeZ has been tested and proven to work with the following filament materials:

  • ABS
  • PET
  • PLA
  • Nylon
  • Copolyester
  • PLA Composites (XT-CF20, BronzeFill, WoodFill, etc.)
  • Recycled ABS & PET
So let's put it to the test, first up I had a go with my ABS filament, which meant heating the bed to 80°C, and I had the extruder set to 230°C. Below is a time lapse of this print.


As you can see to help with sticking the print to the bed I added a brim, this helped the model stick to the 3D-EEZ and unlike previous ABS prints I had no problems with curling.

Once the bed had return to around room temperature (26-28°C), I just gave the print a gentle twist and off it popped the 3D-EEZ had done it's job well.

Next was a PLA print, and this time the bed was left at room temperature and the extruder was set to 195°C


This time I didn't use a brim to see if the 3D-EEZ would be able to hold the arm's on the model, as these were small contact points, but it sure did and once the print had finished another gentle twist and off the print came.

Since these prints were done I have printed a further 5 prints on the same 3 layers of 3D-EEZ and they have all held during printing and all came off the bed great.

To compare these results to what I have been seeing from blue painters tape, I have to replace the tape after each print because I haven't been getting good print adhesion without applying Isopropyl Alcohol to the tape, which helps with adhesion but it helps to much and I have to remove the tape from the bottom of my prints.

To end my review of the 3D-EEZ Build Plate Film I'm going to look at the pros and cons of using this product.

Pros

  • Product life, So far I'm 7 prints in to my first correct application of 3D-EEZ, by now I would have used a lot of blue painter tape and Isopropyl Alcohol.
  • Easy of use, Once I followed the excellent video from Cinter Design, on how to correctly apply the product, I've had great results.
  • Cost, 3D-EEZ comes in two sizes 0.5L and 0.1L. Costing £37 & £15 respectively including P&P, while this might be more expensive than blue tape, I'm convinced it will not only last longer than a roll of tape but also give better results.

Cons

  • None, from this review.

So overall I'm going to give 3D-EEZ build plate film a 10/10 rating, and I would highly recommend 3D-EEZ & Cinter Design.

Thanks for reading and until next time, keep printing.

James

NEXT ON 3D FILAMENT REVIEWS..... 

RepRapper Tech UV Reactive PLA





If any of my readers have some suggestions on ways to achieve better results with prints or on the format of my review please comment below, I'll gladly try out your suggestions.

Sunday, 16 August 2015

Filament Review #10 - Dutch Filaments PLA from Think3DPrint3D

Dutch Filaments 1.75mm PLA from Think3DPrint3D


This filament sample was kindly supplied by Think3DPrint3D, they also sell 3D printers, parts, accessories and of course filament. You can purchase the filament directly from this page.


Here's what Think3DPrint3D have to say about themselves.

"Think3DPrint3D is a family business based in Peterborough, UK, supplying components and complete 3D printer kits to individuals and resellers around the world. Formed in 2011, we believe passionately in Open Source Hardware and the RepRap project. We aim to provide quality products at reasonable prices, backed by an exemplary level of customer service and technical support. We are actively developing new 3D printer and electronics designs."


And here's what the filaments manufacture has to say about themselves and also about their PLA Filament.

"Dutch Filaments is the result of an alliance between a team of experts in private label manufacturing and one of the most innovative  polymer processing plants in Europe.

The rapid development of the possibilities and applications in 3D printing using  the FFF or FDM technology creates a constant demand for new and enhanced polymer based filaments.

We aim to develop, manufacture and market these filaments, offering you as our customer the possibility of distributing our filaments as your own brand."


"PLA @df is a tough, easy to use high grade PLA type of filament, ideal for 3D printing. Slightly modified, the filament retains the typical features of PLA, but makes it tougher and less brittle. Due to a low shrinkage factor PLA @df will not deform after cooling. Poly Lactic Acid is a biodegradable plastic made from renewable natural resources and one of the most popular materials for 3D printing."

So lets take a look at the filament Think3DPrint3D sent me, They supplied me with a sample length of Green & Orange PLA, I have to say I love the green colour, it's a welcome change to the other green PLA I have.




So purchasing the filament from Think3DPrint3D gets you a 1kg spool shrink wrapped with a silica gel desiccant inside and boxed in a Think3DPrint3D box. The filament costs £20 including VAT & postage cost from £3.60. For a 1kg spool of filament that's a good price and I have to say the quality of the filament looks really good. The printed colours are identical to those of the raw filament.

So I've been sent two samples from Think3DPrint3D and I've just installed my Dual Extruder upgrade, you no what that means.... 2 Colour 3D Benchy.

But this isn't as simple as it sounds, I must have spent 2 days calibrating my set up and then I changed a nozzle as it had worn out and this meant I have to make a few more tweaks to the setting, but after a test run and some last calibrations I had finished the upgrade.

When printing with dual extruder's you have a couple of things to think about, one of those is how we deal with nozzle oozing. Cura gives you the option of printing an Ooze Shield which is basically a shell over your print made by both extruder's. And as you can see from the below picture, it makes the 3D Benchy look like it's cover in armour.


Here's a time lapse of the print too.


So as you can see there is a few strings of filament on the outer shield, which would have been stuck to the model, but we can't see how our print came out with this shield on can we, so let get it off.




OK so shield removed and you can see the colour looks really nice and the print came out great. Overall I have to say this is some of the nicest PLA filament I've printed with and with a few more tweaks to the print & printer settings and I think I could get it perfect.

Below are the settings I used for this print.

Nozzle size: 0.4mm *Both extruder's
Extruder temp: 190°C *Both extruder's
Bed temp: 25°C (Blue painters tape) *This was a new piece of tape, wiped with Isopropyl Alcohol, I find this give really good adhesion for my prints.
Layer height: 0.1905mm
Shell Thickness: 0.8mm
Top/Bottom layers: 3
Infill: 20%
Cooling: Enabled
Retraction: Enabled Speed: 60mm/s Distance: 1.5mm Dual extrusion switch amount: 2mm
Support: None
Flow: 100%
Print speeds:

  • Print: 50mm/s
  • Bottom layer: 30mm/s
  • Top/Bottom: 60mm/s
  • Travel: 180mm/s
  • Infill: 38mm/s
To end my review of the Think3DPrint3D filament I'm going to look at the pros and cons of using this filament.

Pros

  • Cost, at £23.60 for a 1kg spool this is great value for money and the Dutch Filaments PLA was recently highly rated in 3D-Matter's January 2015 review of PLA filaments.
  • Colour,  The filament is available is no less than 18 colours giving you a massive range to choose from. 


Cons

  • None, from this review.

So overall I'm going to give the Think3DPrint3D filament a 10/10 rating, and I would highly recommend Think3DPrint3D.

Thanks for reading and until next time, keep printing.



James.

NEXT ON 3D FILAMENT REVIEWS..... 

3D-EEZ Build Plate Film





If any of my readers have some suggestions on ways to achieve better results with prints or on the format of my review please comment below, I'll gladly try out your suggestions.

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Blog Update #2

Hello fellow 3D Printers,

Today, I'm just going to bring you a quick blog update to share with you some of exciting things that have been happening behind the scenes at 3D Printing Reviews.

First off.

Dual Extruder's Are GO!!


For the past few days I have been fitting the dual extruder upgrade to my Printrbot Metal Plus, this was a relatively easy task just a matter of following Printrbot's guide. However I did run into a few issues that I hope are now fixed (Printing a two colour 3D Benchy as I type), they basically boil down to steps not highlighted in the guide and a rather alarming bug where when I was updating the firmware on the Printrboard the 2nd extruder was turned on and heated up to quite a high temperature, good thing I noticed this and killed the power.

I will post a few pictures once, I've really dialled in the setting.

More Filaments - Even More Reviews?


So as you will have read I'm sampling filaments from Global FSD and this provides me with 8 samples at a time to test and review, as well as this I have been fortunate to have contact will other filament suppliers and manufactures and will shortly have a review up with a sample of filament from Think3DPrint3D as well as a full review of the new filament available from Floreon 3D as I was lucky enough to win their recent Twitter competition, I will also be using their filament in some up coming projects.

As well as the filament reviews I have also got some other 3D Printing products to review, including BuiltTak and a product called 3D-EEZ.

OctoPi & Time Lapse Videos


As you would have seen in my last few reviews I have successfully set-up OctoPi to run my 3D Printer wirelessly, which will be very useful for some up coming project where I will be printing for long periods on time. 

I was also able to set-up OctoPi with a camera and can now take time lapse videos, this is currently a work in progress as I try and get the best quality setting I can, but all the videos I take will also be available on my YouTube channel.

Projects


Now that I have a supply of filament in different colours and the ability to dual print it's time to get a few projects on the blog, I have a few ideas including a new Quadcopter frame as well as a few Movie/TV props. But I'd love to hear from my readers if you have any suggestions you would like to see printed?

Kickstarter Backing


I Just wanted to make quick mention to a Kickstarter project I have recently backed by NFire Labs, NFire Labs is a UK company which have started their Kickstarter for their NFire 1. The worlds first truly modular 3D Printer, please head over to their page to find out about this great project and if your on the look out for your first 3D Printer of even like me your third!! consider backing them. NFire 1 Worlds first truly modular 3D printer.


Well that's all for this update but As you can see there is some great content on it's way and as before I'm really excited for what's coming. Until next time keep printing everyone.

James.

Sunday, 9 August 2015

Filament Review #9 - Fillamentum "Rosewood" Timberfill

Fillamentum 1.75mm "Rosewood" Timberfill


Filament was sent as part of Global FSD filament sampler program. Available from Global FSD here, the filament can also be purchased direct from ColorFabb here


So on to my next filament sample from Global FSD and the sampler program. If you missed my first blog update since starting my blog it check it out here blog update, where I talk about what's coming up on 3D Printing Reviews.

OK so after printing with my first wood based filament in my last review it's onto another and today we have Fillamentum "Rosewood" Timberfill, and as I said in my last review I have a sample of a wood based filament for my Groot print and it's actually the Fillamentum "Cinnamon" Timberfill, so this review will be useful for me to dial in the setting.

Here's what Fillamentum, has to say about Timberfill.

"Fillamentum Timberfill is a material for the FFF (also known as FDM) 3D printing technology. The advantage of this material is that it can be used in 3D printing easily, that it allows a high quality of printing even in tricky details and an excellent lamination of the printed object.


Timberfill filament is made of biodegradable material based on wood. The material exhibits similar mechanical features as ABS or PLA and models printed with this material have a genuine appearance of wood. We recommend using a 0,5 mm nozzle. Fillamentum guarantees high precision of filament dimensions within the tolerance +/- 0,1 mm, which is strictly controlled throughout the production."


So as you can see above Fillamentum recommend using a .5mm nozzle with Timberfill, I guess this is because it is more fibrous than other wood based filaments and just like ColorFabb woodFill it then just requires just a few tweaks in the slicer setting and your good to print.

Once again I began my experience with this filament by looking at the manufacture website for any hints and tips for printing. Fillamentum list a few recommend setting for Timberfill such as printing temperature and minimum nozzle size, nothing about print speed or retraction so we will use the setting we used in my last review.

So lets have a look at the filament before we look at printing something with it.

The "Rosewood" Timberfill sample I received came in a 10 meter length and in a zip lock bag with a silica pack inside to stop the filament absorbing moisture, because as I understand it, wood based filament is prone to, so this is essential. There is also information about what was inside printed on a label.



If you decide to purchase a spool it comes as a 750g spool and at a cost of around £31, making it a little more expensive than ColorFabb woodFill but you get slight more filament so still good value in my opinion.

Lets take a closer look at the filament.



And this looks even more odd than the last wood based filament I reviewed, but again it does kind of look like wood it's the colour of wood and with a wood like texture.

Fillamentum's Timberfill also comes in, Champagne, Cinnamon and Light Wood Tone.

So onto printing with Timberfill, and as I said there are only a few recommended settings on the Fillamentum website so I'm going to use mostly the same setting as in my last review with the exception of temperature and I'm also increasing the flow % as I found in my last review that the filament under-extruded a bit.

As in other reviews I used Cura 15.02.1 to do the slicing and as always I'm printing the popular 3DBenchy model available from Thingiverse. Below are the setting I used for this 3D Benchy.

Nozzle size: 0.5mm
Extruder temp: 185°C
Bed temp: 25°C (Blue painters tape) *This was a new piece of tape, wiped with Isopropyl Alcohol, I find this give really good adhesion for my prints.
Layer height: 0.1905mm 
Shell Thickness: 1.5mm
Top/Bottom layers: 3
Infill: 15%
Cooling: Enabled
Retraction: Enabled Speed: 40mm/s Distance: 5.5mm
Support: None
Flow: 110%
Print speeds: 
  • Print: 48mm/s
  • Bottom layer: 25mm/s
  • Top/Bottom: 60mm/s
  • Travel: 180mm/s
  • Infill: 38mm/s
And here's how it came out.




Not bad for my second wood based filament print, it came out great, even the chimney came out a little better than before, maybe the lower printing temperature made the difference here?

And having learnt my lesson last time with OctoPi, here's a time lapse of the Fillamentum "rosewood" Timberfill.


To end my review of the Fillamentum "Rosewood" Timberfill filament I'm going to look at the pros and cons of using this filament,  as before there isn't much between 2 types of the same filament so my pros and cons are largely the same as in my ColorFabb review.

Pros

  • Development, Another fantastic new type of filament 3D printing is getting really exciting, and these specialist filaments are really interesting.
  • Possibilities, This kind of filament opens up the possibilities hugely from Clogs to wooden boxes.
  • Cost, Although the Fillamentum Timberfill costs slightly more the ColorFabb woodFill filament comes in at £31, which is a good price for such an unusual type of filament.

Cons

  • Difficulty, although my prints came out great, I'm not sure how well the filament would work with a Bowen set up, as the filament is quite stiff.
  • Extruder Jams, Fillamentum does recommend a .5mm nozzle with their filament as I guess they've had jams themselves but a lot of people use smaller nozzle sizes and they might not have anything bigger.
So overall I'm going to give the Fillamentum "Rosewood" Timberfill filament a 9/10 rating, and I would recommend both Fillamentum for their filament and Global FSD for the massive range of filaments just waiting to be tried. All the samples that I test are fed into a filament database which you can view on the Global FSD website by clicking here.

Thanks for reading and until next time, keep printing.



James.


NEXT ON 3D FILAMENT REVIEWS..... 

Printrbot Metal Plus Duel Extruder Upgrade





If any of my readers have some suggestions on ways to achieve better results with prints or on the format of my review please comment below, I'll gladly try out your suggestions.

Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Filament Review #8 - ColorFabb woodFill Fine

ColorFabb 1.75mm woodFill Fine


Filament was sent as part of Global FSD filament sampler program. Available from Global FSD here, the filament can also be purchased direct from ColorFabb here


So on to my next filament sample from Global FSD and the sampler program. If you missed my first blog update since starting my blog it check it out here blog update, where I talk about what's coming up on 3D Printing Reviews.

And we're on to the type of filament I've been waiting to try since owning my 3D printer. Wood based filament, I've got my own sample ready for a new Groot print as this PLA one just isn't cutting it, ha ha.



OK so this filament is from ColorFabb and I've heard and seen some great prints from their filament and I have to say the quality is great and I'm certainly going to be using more of their filaments in the future.

Here's what ColorFabb, has to say about woodFill.

"If you’re looking for something special in your filament portfolio then consider our woodFill filament. About 70% colorfabb PLA and 30% recycled woodfibres. Your prints will look absolutely amazing and your 3d printer cave will smell like a woodshop! Check out learn.colorfabb.com for a tutorial and slicer profiles on how to print with woodFill."


Unlike some other exotic filaments ColorFabb woodFill doesn't require any physical changes  to your printer (unless you decide to use a different nozzle size), just a few tweaks in the slicer setting and your ready to print.

Again this type of filament is new to me so off I went to the internet to find out what I needed to know, and I only had to go as far the ColorFabb website, they have a site dedicated to showing you how to print their filament as well as news and a blog so go check it out here. And on that site they have a page for the woodFill filament I was sampling, which was great it gave me some good tips and my print came out perfect, apart from one small issue but that was my printers fault and not the filament (more on that later), that page can be found here.

So lets have a look at the filament before we look at printing something with it.

The woodFill sample I received came in a 10 meter length and in a zip lock bag and included a silica pack inside to stop them absorbing moisture and as I understand it, it does so this is essential. There is also information about what was inside printed on a label.



If you decide to purchase a spool it comes as a 600g spool and at a cost of around £28, making it great value in my opinion, just think how many Groot's you could print with all that filament.

Lets take a closer look at the filament.



Doesn't it look odd, although it's kind of what I suspected a wood based filament to look like. The colour of wood and with a wood like texture

ColorFabb also produce a BambooFill, which is About 80% ColorFabb PLA and 20% recycled bamboofibres.

So onto printing with woodFill, and the recommended settings such that a .4mm nozzle is fine to used however I had read that people printing with wood based filaments did get jams, so I decided to fit a .5mm nozzle I had and had no problems at all with jams.

It was also suggested that woodFill performed better at a 0.25-0.3mm layer height, however I kept at my 0.1905mm layer height as this works best on my printer And a print speed of between 50-80mm/s I left my base printing speed setting at 48mm/s. The other setting talked about of the ColorFabb site is retraction settings and I changed mine in line with their recommendation.

As in other reviews I used Cura 15.02.1 to do the slicing and as always I'm printing the popular 3DBenchy model available from Thingiverse. Below are the setting I used for this 3D Benchy.

Nozzle size: 0.5mm
Extruder temp: 195°C
Bed temp: 25°C (Blue painters tape) *This was a new piece of tape, wiped with Isopropyl Alcohol, I find this give really good adhesion for my prints.
Layer height: 0.1905mm 
Shell Thickness: 1.5mm
Top/Bottom layers: 3
Infill: 15%
Cooling: Enabled
Retraction: Enabled Speed: 40mm/s Distance: 5.5mm
Support: None
Flow: 105%
Print speeds: 
  • Print: 48mm/s
  • Bottom layer: 25mm/s
  • Top/Bottom: 60mm/s
  • Travel: 180mm/s
  • Infill: 38mm/s
And here's how it came out.




For my first wood based filament print it came out great, apart from the chimney but this was due to my printers cooling fan design, unless the hot end is moving across the print the cooling doesn't cool the print very well. perhaps I could have printed a little lower than 195°C but I'm not sure that would work so well for the rest of the print.

So no time lapse of this print because I didn't realise the time lapse setting has to be set every time you print in OctoPi, but lesson learnt and I'll have one for the next review.

To end my review of the ColorFabb woodFill filament I'm going to look at the pros and cons of using this filament.

Pros

  • Development, Another fantastic new type of filament 3D printing is getting really exciting, and these specialist filaments are really interesting.
  • Possibilities, This kind of filament opens up the possibilities hugely from Clogs to wooden boxes.
  • Cost, The ColorFabb woodFill filament comes in at £28, which is a good price for such an unusual type of filament.

Cons

  • Difficulty, although my prints came out great, I'm not sure how well the filament would work with a Bowen set up, as the filament is quite stiff.
  • Extruder Jams, although the recommended set up states a .4mm nozzle is fine I used a .5mm after reading people had jams with anything smaller, and I know a lot of people use smaller nozzle sizes and they might not have anything bigger.
So overall I'm going to give the ColorFabb woodFill filament a 9/10 rating, and I would recommend both ColorFabb for their filament and Global FSD for the massive range of filaments just waiting to be tried. All the samples that I test are fed into a filament database which you can view on the Global FSD website by clicking here.

Thanks for reading and until next time, keep printing.



James.


NEXT FILAMENT BEING REVIEWED WILL BE..... 

Fillamentum "Rosewood" Timberfill





If any of my readers have some suggestions on ways to achieve better results with prints or on the format of my review please comment below, I'll gladly try out your suggestions.

Sunday, 2 August 2015

Filament Review #7 - Polymaker PolyFlex White

Polymaker 1.75mm PolyFlex White


Filament was sent as part of Global FSD filament sampler program. Available from Global FSD here, the filament can also be purchased direct from Polymaker here


So on to my next filament sample from Global FSD and the sampler program. If you missed my first blog update since starting my blog it check it out here blog update, where I talk about what's coming up on 3D Printing Reviews.

So after selecting 2 NinjaFlex filaments for review I thought it would be a good idea to select another flexible filament for comparison. Polymaker's PolyFlex in white.

Here's what Polymaker, the manufacture has to say about PolyFlex.

"PolyFlex™ features a “Shore A” hardness of 90-95A and a large strain-to-failure of over 400%. These aren’t just figures on a page, but are tested values obtained from actual printed parts. What this means is that PolyFlex™ gives you cool flexible parts with no worry about the part breaking. PolyFlex™ is truly your best tool for creating fun flexible parts." 

As I recently reviewed flexible filaments, this review is going to be more about printing with them, than talking about them. This first thing to look at is if your extruder is going to have problems feeding in into the hot end.

A quick search on Thingiverse, revealed this model available for the Printrbot. Printrbot NinjaFlex Pilot Upgrade, there were a few available but I like the simple look of this design and went ahead and printed it out. My first attempt didn't go to plan because of the way Cura handled the support material, so I reprinted it using Repetier Host in ABS and it came out great.



Fitting the upgrade to the Printrbot was easy, just following the pictures on the models Thingiverse page, it's a case of removing the extruder arm, from the extruder motor and then removing the screw on the left of the motor and attaching the upgrade with that screw, then simply replace the extruder arm, and your ready to print flexible filament.




The upgrade stops the flexible filament from looping around the drive gear, by closing the gap between the extruder body and drive gear. I still had a slight problem when I tried to feed filament through to fast but this was my error and the upgrade stopped the filament from going to far from where is should.

So lets have a look at the filament before we look at printing something with it.

The PolyFlex sample I received came in a 10 meter length and in a zip lock bag with a silica pack inside to stop them absorbing moisture, with information about what was inside printed on a label.



If you purchase a spool it comes as a 750g spool and at a cost of around £36, making it slightly cheaper than NinjaFlex SemiFlex but still an expensive filament unless as I said before you you have an idea for a flexible print.

Lets take a closer look at the filament.



The colour of the filament is a consistent gloss white, it's actually more white than the picture shows, as you'll see in the print.

PolyFlex is available in Black, White, Yellow & Orange.

So onto printing, and as before I took a look on the Polymaker website for some guidelines when it came to printer setting, it is recommended to print with a temperature of 220-235°C, you can print on a non-heated bed and they suggest a print speed of 30mm/s.

And as in other reviews I found this printing temperature to be to high, and as you can see below This is the 220°C print and down the page is the end result at 205°C, It might not be very clear from the picture but the finish on the 220°C print is clearly melted and bubbly, but on the 205°C print you can see the layers and it's just nicer.



As in other reviews I used Cura 15.02.1 to do the slicing and as always I'm printing the popular 3DBenchy model available from Thingiverse. Below are the setting I used for this 3D Benchy.

Nozzle size: 0.4mm
Extruder temp: 205°C
Bed temp: 25°C (Blue painters tape) *This was a new piece of tape, wiped with Isopropyl Alcohol, I find this give really good adhesion for my prints.
Layer height: 0.1905mm 
Shell Thickness: 1.2mm
Top/Bottom layers: 3
Infill: 15%
Cooling: Enabled
Retraction: Enabled Speed: 15mm/s Distance: 4mm
Support: None
Flow: 100%
Print speeds: 
  • Print: 35mm/s
  • Bottom layer: 25mm/s
  • Top/Bottom: 30mm/s
  • Travel: 180mm/s
  • Infill: 30mm/s
And here's how it came out.




For only my forth flexible filament print it came out OK, the same issue as before with the front of the boat didn't come out great, I think this could be an infill issue, where the infill doesn't touch that part of the boat so there is nothing to hold it's shape?

These prints also came off the build plate great, just like the NinjaFlex ones did.

And if you all remember in my blog update I said I was getting a Raspberry Pi camera set up to take time-lapse videos well here's the first one I took.


To end my review of the Polymaker PolyFlex filament I'm going to look at the pros and cons of using this filament and they are more or less the same as the NinjaFlex filaments but I would add that I had problems with the white colour of the filament.

Pros

  • Development, Another fantastic new type of filament 3D printing is getting really exciting, and these specialist filaments are really interesting.
  • Possibilities, This kind of filament opens up the possibilities hugely from prosthetics to phone cases.
  • Cost, The Polymaker PolyFlex filament comes in slightly cheaper than NinjaFlex SemiFlex filament and gets you more on a spool.

Cons

  • Difficulty, although my prints came out OK, I did have problems with feeding the filament into the hot end, I think this could cause some problems. And I'm not sure how well larger prints would come out.
  • Extruder Jams, I didn't have this problem because I used a Printrbot NinjaFlex Pilot Upgrade, but I've read of people having problems with the filament jamming in the extruder.
  • Colour, Although the print came out a good colour match for the stated colour, I have to print the 3DBenchy again due to contamination from my last PLA print, I also got a few burn blobs of filament and they was with the lower than recommended temperature. However I could of fed more filament through and this would be less noticeable on other colours.
So overall I'm going to give the Polymaker PolyFlex filament a 8/10 rating, but I would still recommend both Polymaker for their filament as it's cheaper than NinjaFlex and Global FSD for the massive range of filaments just waiting to be tried. All the samples that I test are fed into a filament database which you can view on the Global FSD website by clicking here.

Thanks for reading and until next time, keep printing.



James.


NEXT FILAMENT BEING REVIEWED WILL BE..... 

ColorFabb Woodfill





If any of my readers have some suggestions on ways to achieve better results with prints or on the format of my review please comment below, I'll gladly try out your suggestions.