A quick Guide
to 3D printing
What is 3D Printing
3D printing is a form of additive manufacturing, where thermoplastic materials are layered on top of one another forming a 3d model. FDM (fused deposition modelling) is the most widely used printing technique and is the technology we currently use.
It is not uncommon for prints to take up to and exceeding 12 hours to print, yet they can also be completed in under an hour.
It is imperative that prints be overseen at the start to ensure fixing to the build plate.
FDM printing is generally the most affordable printing technique used, however costa can rise depending on material used and how long prints take to complete.
How it works:
The filament is the material to be used in the printing process.
It is generally in a wire shape around a coil stored above or to the side of the printer itself on a spool or reel.
The filament is then fed into the extruder via a small motor, ready to be heated for printing.
This is where the filament is heated and exerted onto the build plate.
The extruder is often at temperatures ranging from 150 to 350 degrees Celsius, and so caution must be used when a print is in progress.
2 - Extruder
The heat bed is often called the build plate and is where the printed model/part is made. This also can reach temperatures up to 200 degrees Celsius in order to avoid warping when the filament is extruded as fast cooling can cause distortion in some materials more than others.
3- Heat bed
First description of a photopolymer rapid prototyping system that used UV light to harden the material
first SLA machine is invented
A patent was filed for a selective laser sintering (SLS) process
First commercial rapid prototyping printer was manufactured called SLA-1
A patent was filed for fused deposition modelling (FDM) ... our printer!
The first 3D printed organ is used for a surgical transplant
University of Southampton designs and prints the first unmanned 3D printed aircraft
There are now currently more than 170 3D printer system manufacturers worldwide
The first step is for you to contact us sending your 3D files to be printed. Discuss any alterations you may want or questions you have, about any aspect of your print. Such as material, size and strength of your product.
After the design has been finalized we can offer a quote for the print to meet your standards.
As soon as the print is complete we will dispatch it the same day and provide you with a tracking number, ensuring it is delivered to you in a timely manner.
Once conformation of your order has been accepted our team will then begin the order as soon as possible. Depending on the order number this can take up to a few days due to demand.
We have a range of the most useful materials used in 3d printing which is constantly expanding.
Carbon fibre filament uses short carbon fibres, consisting of segments of less than one millimetre in length, which are mixed with a thermoplastic known as the base material. This makes the overall strength of the material much stronger and more durable enabling it to be used in harsher environments.
How to prepare a file for a 3d print
(making sure its possible to print)
The team will always be able to help guide you through this process discussing what would work and how it may effect the outcome of your printed product. Some materials are better than others at performing for different designs.
Designing your idea?
From beginner to advance designers, you can design your own 3d printed model.
If you are just starting out try head over to tinkercad. It is a free basic CAD software incorporating basic shapes, which is easier to use.
More advanced users may want to try the free software blender. This software is used by many of our team and allows for maximum personalisation.
The files must be in a format which is able to be read by the printer. CAD software designed for printing usually will put it in an STL format. STL (Standard Triangle Language) is the most common file for CAD software and is the best option to have it in. We kindly request all files to be in this format to save time in changing the format, if not possible we can discuss on a client basis on which file type is available.
The team is here to help
What we do with your file
After the deisgn is complete we run it through slicing software like cura which can tell us where the faults are in the print as well as how long it will take and settings such as the infill density and pattern.
Founded upon brining revolutionary designs into reality.
We were founded on the basis of professionalism and realism, with this in mind we are here to help you bring your product to life whether you are looking to apply your design in industry or for personal use.