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ABS printing successes/failures


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Posted · ABS printing successes/failures

Dear All, I'd like to start a new thread for ABS.

Firstly a bit of background, can be skipped if you like. I just want to see some results of ABS on the UM2, and also the UM1.

Currently I'm an Afinia H series (Up!) user (maybe not for much longer if Statasys get their way). Its a great little printer which for the last 12 months has churned out reliable nice quality prints. The Make Magazine's review of it last year was the reason for buying it, and has been spot on. Press print and walk away. Just what I wanted.

However I'd been keeping my eye on the Ultimaker (after the same review) and when the UM2 was bought out, I decided now was a good time to upgrade. Although the Afinia will print PLA, it comes with ABS and the suppliers have a range of approved ABS materials, not PLA.

The reason I wanted to upgrade to the Ultimaker 2 was to benefit from the larger build plate (now heated), the higher resolution and 'tweakability' of the UM2.

ABS is a great material for printing. It can be used outdoors (well, more so than PLA), its incredibly easy to join (using acetone, great for large prints where you don't want any support material) and it can be finished easily if required (including with acetone vapour smoothing, which is something I recently experimented with and was very impressed by).

So far there seems to be very little discussion on ABS, particularly as far as the UM2 is concerned. Printing in ABS, although similar in challenges to PLA and most other plastics, has it's own nuances. ABS also has differences between different manufacturers. It would be really useful if some of the more experienced users could share some of there successes and failures, setting and solutions with us and have a dedicated place to do it. Some of the problems we face are common to all materials, but many are material specific.Temperatures (nozzle and bed), material feed rates, layer adhesion, warping etc. are all unique to individual materials.

So don't be shy about your wonderful ABS prints or ashamed of your not so wonderful ones. Lets see them, and try to build up a database of knowledge about how to print this sometimes tricky material. Thanks for reading!


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