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Best carbon fiber material for hard working parts?


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Posted · Best carbon fiber material for hard working parts?

Has anybody been trying any of the various carbon fiber materials available out there? We are currently using Polycarbonate, but my boss is wondering about carbon fiber reinforced filaments. Up till now we have been doing rapid prototyping of small electronics enclosures, but now they want to try prototyping large pump impellers (7-8 in. dia). We are going to try PC to start, but are also wondering about the carbon fiber.


Any practical hands on stories/experience would be helpful to hear! 😁 




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    Posted · Best carbon fiber material for hard working parts?

    I've tried some carbon fiber PC before, it's hard as a rock, I tried breaking the infill with a pair of pliers and I could not get it to budge.


    Hit it with a hammer and it didn't even phase it, finally dented it when I really hit it but I was very impressed.


    I've made a variety of fan wheels over the last year or so, I have a hard time making the fins as strong as I would like, they tend to be weak right at the joint despite what kind of seam I do, if you are doing an impeller with a short stickout from the hub, I could see it working but your effeciency would be low.


    I'm sure it could be possible, but I would be going for something with a little bit of flex in it, like Ninjatek Armadillo, I just made a fan wheel with it today, about 5 or 6 inches in dia on my Ender 6 and it came out great, enough flex to prevent it from snapping but not so flexible that it distorts. 


    But I've only tried very little PC with carbon fiber, but that was my experience.

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    • 2 weeks later...
    Posted · Best carbon fiber material for hard working parts?

    Oliveros - thank you! I am actually looking for a material to use instead of Polycarbonate. Our biggest issue has been that the pump impeller is basically a big disc shape and like all polycarbonate it wants to warp and bend upwards at the edges, which causes it to run into the print head.... not good!


    So I am looking for another possible material with similar strength but better stability - I was thinking something with either a glass fill or carbon fiber fill would get closest to what we want. Any info/results with materials that we might consider would be much appreciated.


    Thank you,

    Johnny R.

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    Posted · Best carbon fiber material for hard working parts?

    Hey Johnny,


    Warping is a  pain, that much I think we all know, I try to just steer clear of filaments that warp excessively. 


    As I mentioned above, I think Ninjatek's Armadillo would perform well. The thicker you make it, the more force it'll take to bend it or for it to flex.


    Armadillo doesen't really warp, not in my experience at least.





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    Posted · Best carbon fiber material for hard working parts?

    Not sure if this will help you.  I've been printing with Nylforce CF a fair bit lately, had two parts in the past three weeks that I had to get perfectly flat, strong (brackets in moving parts) and had to have decent surface finish.


    No matter what I have tried on the bed, I always end up with a bit of warp, and the glass finish on one side wasn't going to work.  So I tried an experiment with an old technique and a new material - a raft made of breakaway.  The later cura versions allow you to limit how much breakaway you need, just the raft itself and then interface layers.


    Both parts came out perfectly.  By that I mean the bottom and top layers look the same, nice smooth, flat matte.  Zero warping.  The breakaway bonds tight to the glass and hold the nylon/CF without any separation.


    So far, these parts seem to have great surface finish and are darn near unbreakable at the print orientation I used (that orientation is very important for this stuff - you'll see on my first part I laid it on its side to improve strength)


    Here's a thread that shows a part.  Cheers


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