3D printer for job shop?


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Thread: 3D printer for job shop?

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    Default 3D printer for job shop?

    I’d like to add a 3D printer to our small shop. Our main customer uses a lot of plastics that I think could be much more efficiently printed vs. machined, and I think their tolerances would allow it. Delrin is a common request. Carbon composites would also work well for a lot of their applications.

    There are a few pro-sumer printers I’ve considered that claim to be able to handle these materials but I’m not convinced the finish quality is acceptable. What should my minimum budget be? Any particular machines I should look at? Is resin printing worth considering?

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    Default Re: 3D printer for job shop?

    Hi,
    the problem with printed plastics is that they are so porous and weak by comparison to a solid piece of material milled away into its final shape.

    Why not gather as many samples of different printed materials as you can find, and test them for their mechanical properties. In some respects 'who cares what it looks
    like if the plastic is that sh****y that it breaks in service'

    Craig



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    Default Re: 3D printer for job shop?

    Quote Originally Posted by joeavaerage View Post
    Hi,
    the problem with printed plastics is that they are so porous and weak by comparison to a solid piece of material milled away into its final shape.

    Why not gather as many samples of different printed materials as you can find, and test them for their mechanical properties. In some respects 'who cares what it looks
    like if the plastic is that sh****y that it breaks in service'

    Craig
    That depends on the 3D printer itself, the material used, the way it is printed, the skill of the guy using the printer and creating the job... and so on. It is not as simple as you are stating.

    https://www.youtube.com/c/AdaptingCamera/videos
    https://adapting-camera.blogspot.com


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    Default Re: 3D printer for job shop?

    Unless the parts are tiny,the process is far from fast,would this matter?There are machines that can work with carbon infused filaments which are often in need of a post processing cure to reach their maximum performance level.I expect your computer has a search facility too but here are a few links to look at.Just keep in mind that the machines and ovens involved will cost a bit more than the hobby printers from Amazon or Ebay.

    https://www.simplify3d.com/support/m...-fiber-filled/

    https://www.3d-alchemy.co.uk/3d-printing-in-carbon.html

    https://www.3dsourced.com/3d-printer...rinting-guide/



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    Default Re: 3D printer for job shop?

    Hi,

    That depends on the 3D printer itself, the material used, the way it is printed, the skill of the guy using the printer and creating the job... and so on. It is not as simple as you are stating.
    That may be so....but the problem remains that OP has to determine of the types of materials and types of printers which produce a mechanically sound product. Many of the printed plastic products I've
    seen are just complete rubbish......not strong enough to retain a screw and porous to the extent it leaks.

    Craig



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    Default Re: 3D printer for job shop?

    Quote Originally Posted by joeavaerage View Post
    Hi,



    That may be so....but the problem remains that OP has to determine of the types of materials and types of printers which produce a mechanically sound product. Many of the printed plastic products I've
    seen are just complete rubbish......not strong enough to retain a screw and porous to the extent it leaks.

    Craig
    You have seen, but never actually printed. In other words, you have no idea...
    The choice of materials and the skill is always important, no matter what method you prefer.

    https://www.youtube.com/c/AdaptingCamera/videos
    https://adapting-camera.blogspot.com


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    Default Re: 3D printer for job shop?

    Hi,
    well you seem to know so how about posting what materials and what characteristics a machine would have in order to make plastic parts
    with sound mechanical properties.

    Craig



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    Default Re: 3D printer for job shop?

    If you have cnc then I'd say stick with cnc , unless the parts are overly complicated . Time is money and a cnc will remove material extremely faster that a printer can lay plastic . Don't count on your prints being as strong as machining from solid , or looking as clean and nice

    I've machined a lot of delrin but never printed it . The requirements don't appear to be far off from abs so any decent printer should work with it , except it does appear to be a much more temperamental than the more common printing materials . The fumes from delrin are really bad so a good confinement and ventilation is a must have .

    I've used petg infused with carbon fiber and it's my favorite mix for making strong rigid parts , for example hinged electric motor mounts for my fishing kayaks which get knocked around a lot .

    I struggled a lot with an open framed 3d printer and gave up on it until I found a good deal on a flashforge printer pro . The difference was night and day for use and consistently good prints . This thing is probably still a turd compared to what some diehards may be running but I've had very few bad prints with abs and petg .

    Finding the right brand of printer is one thing and finding the right brands of filament for consistency is another . You'll have to experiment with brands until you find what suits your desires .

    I'm no 3d printing master by any means but thats my 2 cents



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    Default Re: 3D printer for job shop?

    I’ll leave it up to the engineers who spec the parts to decide whether they should be printed or machined. I would just like to give them the option, because I can see a significant cost savings for them. 3D printed objects generally require no special fixturing, setup or tooling, which tends to make up a large chunk of my price. Machine time is cheap, while my time is not. I don’t disagree that a machined part in general will be stronger.

    Like metalmayhem I’ve come to the conclusion that the machine needs to be an enclosed printer. I keep coming back to the Flashforge Adventurer 4, but the fact that it is limited to using their proprietary nozzles does limit its ability to run composites. If an $800 printer won’t do the job then I’ll save some more and buy the right machine. Their Guider 2 is very similar and does use standard nozzles but the temperature limit might be low for more advanced materials.



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    Default Re: 3D printer for job shop?

    I don't know how the adventure is set up but the printer pro takes generic nozzles and prints up to 260C which gives a bit more temp than the guider . The auto level has it's appeal but I can go months without the need to re-level .
    I'm sure someone with more printing experience will chime in with better alternatives



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