3D modeling and printing of 3d models found their application in many branches of human activity and are in great demand today.
The creation of 3d models and the manufacture of a prototype of a finished product is now a necessary stage when starting the production of a new product, when preparing a presentation to a customer, when conducting functional testing of a new product.
Printing 3D models
Modern 3d model printing Is the process of creating a volumetric object based on specialized equipment (3d printer) based on a previously prepared 3D model of the product. To obtain a 3d-model of an object, it is possible to use three-dimensional modeling or technology of 3d scanning of objects.
Creating 3D models and printing them on a 3D printer is a rather difficult process that requires professional knowledge and experience.
Printing and making a prototype of a finished product includes the following steps
- 3d modeling – building a product model in a professional graphics program. Three-dimensional modeling includes the following sequence of actions: creating a primitive form; elaboration of small details; smoothing shapes.
- Texturing – the process of applying textures to the model to make it realistic.
- Setting up lighting, environment scenes, choosing an observation point and setting up cameras, adding additional effects.
- Preparing a 3D model for printing.
- Setting up a 3D printer.
- 3d printing.
- Post-processing of the finished product.
Each stage has its own characteristics and difficulties. Let’s take a closer look at how to prepare a 3D model for printing.
Подготовка 3D модели к печати
If you have a ready-made three-dimensional model of an object or you plan to create it, then before you start printing it on a 3D printer, you will need to first prepare the model for printing.
The better the 3D model is prepared, the better the finished result will be.
The preparation process can be divided into 10 basic steps. Before considering them, it is important to familiarize yourself with such concepts.
Slicer program – software that turns your 3d model into a program code that will be read by a 3d printer.
Slicing – the process of converting an object model into code.
First of all, the constructed model must be divided into layers, each of which consists of a fill and a perimeter. The movements of the print head of the printer occur on each subsequent layer along the XY axes, while the molten plastic is applied. Upon completion of printing one layer, the transition is made one layer higher along the Z axis to print the next layer, etc.
10 stages of preparing a 3D model for printing
- Net … If the model consists of many parts, then it is necessary to transform them into one.
- Flat model base … The model with a flat base is better supported on the printer platform. If the model suddenly peels off during the printing process, then a shift of coordinates may occur and the geometry of the base of the 3D model will be violated. If it is not possible to create a flat base or the base plane is small, then the model prints on a raft. However, there is a possibility that the raft can spoil the surface of the model, and therefore it is better not to use it.
- Wall thickness … The walls of the model must be thicker than the nozzle of the printer, in addition, the walls must be equal to each other. If you specify too small sizes, then the printer will not be able to print them, i.e. the wall thickness should match the diameter of the nozzle.
- Overhanging elements … Support will be required to print any overhanging element. Therefore, it is better to keep the number of overhanging elements to a minimum. This will shorten the time it takes to print and reduce wastage of consumables. In addition, the supports can ruin the finished model surface they come into contact with. Printing of an overhanging element is allowed if the angle of inclination is less than 70 degrees.
- Accuracy … The mechanical capabilities of your printer determine a lot, including the accuracy in the X and Y axes. The accuracy of the model in the Z axis is directly related to the layer height. The height must be a multiple of the layer height. Do not forget that when the material cools down, it shrinks, which entails a change in the dimensions of the finished object. The diameter of the holes in the model should be widened by 0.1-0.2 mm.
- Small parts … Small parts are always difficult to print, so it’s best not to make them smaller than the diameter of the nozzle itself. It is better to enlarge them 2 times relative to the nozzle diameter, since as a result of post-processing, small details may disappear altogether or become less noticeable.
- Narrow places … It is quite difficult to process narrow areas; this will require special equipment, a micro drill or chemicals. Therefore, it is better not to use them at all.
- Large models … When building large object models, consider the size of the printable area of your printer. If the object is too large, then it is best to cut it into pieces, while it is better to prepare the joints in advance, for example, a dovetail.
- Position on the platform … The strength of the finished product directly depends on the location of the model. The load must be distributed across the layers, not along. Otherwise, the print layers may separate.
- File format … As a rule, slicers only support the STL format, it is in this format that it is best to save your model.
Observing all the above rules, you will receive a high-quality, durable and accurate finished model of the product. You can order 3d modeling and 3d printing services from CLONA company … We are always glad to cooperate!