What do I need to know when 3d printing
There are several things to consider when it comes to 3d printing. From which printer to buy, which materials to use and how to design something.
There are numerous printers available starting from around £350 and rising to over £1000. If you are a newcomer to the world of 3d printing then a basic home 3d printer will probably be enough to enjoy some simple 3d printing.
Different materials for 3d printing
There are 2 types of common material used for printing. ABS is a petroleum based plastic that is very robust but can give off toxic fumes when it is being used. PLA by contrast is a bio degradable printing material made from corn starch which is enviromentally friendly. It has a lower melting point and is less robust
Safety concerns when 3d printing
The most important thing to consider when 3d printing is staying safe. Certain elements of the printer can reach very high temperatures and ABS plactic can give off toxic fumes so should be used in a well ventilated area. Take care when using 3d printers and never let small children near them when in use.
3d printing design considerations
The final thing to consider is designing your 3d objects. Sometimes small errors in your computer design can give the printer problems which can end up with your finished product not looking the way you intended. Modelling on a computer can take a lot of practise and for anyone in a hurry to get started there a re websites that offer ready built designs. If you want to design your own be suire that all edges join up completely, in other words the object should be water tight. Equally make sure that your object does not have any internal edges or curves. This can be hard to spot but will certainly cause problems for the printer. There are programs which can help you check for internal geometry.
In general 3d printing is amazing and very fun but there are many things to consider when 3d printing at home. Experiment and you will become an expert in no time.