Jump to content
Ultimaker Community of 3D Printing Experts

Isopropyl Alcohol on PLA


dlloyd124
 Share

Recommended Posts

Posted · Isopropyl Alcohol on PLA

Hi, recently my company has bought an Ultimaker S5. Since the industry we are in is heavily regulated, I need some more information than what is provided on Technical/Safety Data Sheets. Does using isopropyl alcohol have any effect on PLA? Would silicone adhere to the material well enough to be used in our practice? Is there specific research or information, in writing, that shows these materials being used on PLA?

  • Link to post
    Share on other sites

    Posted · Isopropyl Alcohol on PLA

    I am not an Ultimaker spokesperson, and not related to the company. So what I say is only from experience, and has no official value.

     

    There are hundreds of different silicones, from very soft (flesh-like) to very hard, from elastic to very brittle, from non-stick for mould making to very sticky for glueing, high-temp and low-temp, platina-cured, tin-cured, liquid, paste, kneadable, sanitary/non-sanitary, filled and unfilled, overpaintable and non-paintable, chemically resistant and non-resistant,... The list is endless.

     

    I mainly use non-sticking silicones for mould making, which obviously don't stick at all.

     

    Then there are lots of different PLA-formulations and additives. And also surface-shape and surface-preparation could play an important role.

     

    Also, there do exist activators that improve bonding of silicones to plastics, but I don't know how they work chemically.

     

    So I think the only one who could answer this question, is you yourself, depending on which materials you use in which circumstances. I guess you will need to do your own strength tests.

     

    The same is probably true for the use of chemicals and solvents on PLA and other 3D-printing materials. At best manufacturers could give general rough guidelines. 3D-materials may contain lots of additives: softeners, colors, UV-protective agents,... These may have different chemical resistances from the base resin.

     

    Some of my models have been used in the hospital and desinfected with isopropyl alcohol without damage. But they are only for single use, so the chemical contact is very superficial and short, they are not drowned into it.

     

    Additionally, expect PLA to get harder and more brittle over time. Snap-fit mechanisms that work well originally, are likely to break if you try them after a year, in my experience. It seems that this is due to changes in crystal structure, from amorphe to more crystalline, if I understood it well.

     

    Also, expect PLA to deform in a car, or in sunlight behind a window. Even in moderate spring or autumn weather. This too is from experience...

     

  • Link to post
    Share on other sites

    Create an account or sign in to comment

    You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

    Create an account

    Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

    Register a new account

    Sign in

    Already have an account? Sign in here.

    Sign In Now
     Share

    • Our picks

      • The Ultimaker Showcase — October 14. What's new?
        Your dear friends at Ultimaker have some exciting news and insights for you!
         
        • 0 replies
      • New here? Get ahead with a free onboarding course
        Hi,
         
        Often getting started is the most difficult part of any process. A good start sets you up for success and saves you time and energy that could be spent elsewhere. That is why we have a onboarding course ready for
        Ultimaker S5 Pro Bundle, Ultimaker S5, Ultimaker S3 Ultimaker 2+ Connect.   
        They're ready for you on the Ultimaker Academy platform. All you need to do to gain access is to register your product to gain free access. 
        Ready? Register your product here in just 60 seconds.
          • Like
        • 8 replies
    ×
    ×
    • Create New...