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Removing support structure from small, deep holes


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Posted · Removing support structure from small, deep holes

Hi, I’m very new to printing and I recently printed an object with multiple holes and a large overhang. Thinking about the overhang, I decided to include support structures in the print. Dealing with the support of the overhang was fine. I’m just having a lot of trouble figuring out an easy and safe way to remove those structures from the tiny holes (about 3-4mm in diameter) in my print. Any tool suggestions? Thanks.

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    Posted (edited) · Removing support structure from small, deep holes

    Well if you do mean 3-4mm and not 0.3-0.4mm then a Dremel with a 2,3 or 4mm drill bit, depending on what you are exactly trying to achieved. Alternatively good quality jeweller's files have circular options or semi-circular options which will be the right size to get in there - I use them a lot as my wife makes jewellery! Most cutting modelling knives probably will not be slim enough to let you get to the depth you need but maybe Dremel have something.


    Taking a different route, if you use a soluble support material (assuming you have dual extruders) you  should be able to do the job just by soaking the part in whatever the filament needs you to soak it in!

    Edited by yellowshark
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    Posted · Removing support structure from small, deep holes

    Thanks! I actually used my skinniest hex key and that did the job. Next time I’ll be sure to give the jeweller’s files a try. My current 3D printer does not seem to have dual extruders but I’ll definitely look into that for my next one :) 

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    Posted · Removing support structure from small, deep holes

    If the hole is only 3 to 4mm diameter, you usually do not need supports for most materials. If the design alows it, you could taper the holes near the end (like in blind holes drilled), to improve the inner shape, if that would be required.


    For a bit larger holes, let's say 10...15mm, I design custom supports that are strong enough to wiggle loose and to pull out, and that have enough clearance to insert tools next to it, or that have holes where I can insert hooks to pull, or something similar; it depends on the design.

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