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Posted · Ultimaker Nylon

Ultimaker Nylon can withstand significant mechanical stress, is impact resistant, abrasion resistant and compared to some other nylons it has reduced humidity absorption. It is used sometimes to replace metal components. Is it also a good material for your application? Drop us a line below if you have a question about some of its exact properties! Community experts and Ultimaker experts are available to help. 


Or have you used Ultimaker Nylon before yourself? Please let us know what you think of it. It could be useful to new customers considering to use Ultimaker Nylon. Whatever the inquiry, let us below, grab a coffee, and sit back knowing that help is on its way!

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    Posted · Ultimaker Nylon

    The PA material from Ultimaker is comparatively harder and more dimensionally stable than PA (natural).
    Since I have not yet found a designation for a more precise material definition, it ranks somewhere around PA6 for me.
    Otherwise I also print PA material from BASF and Taulman or have PA12 parts laser-sintered to order. Hence the approximate material estimate.


    The Ultimaker PA is unusually resistant to wear. Also against carbide.
    My sure way to get a saw blade dull in a short time is, "Saw a printed product out of Ultimaker PA."

    I only print the material on the UM pro bundle. PA was the reason for me to use a bundle.
    The material station helps to keep the material dry.

    The exchangeable print heads help to get through without clogged print heads.
    (Because I have a set of 0.4 and 0.8 print heads in the drawer for the Ultimaker PA.
    At first it was just a theory but it has now been confirmed.
    If I always print the same material with the same print head, I have to clean less often.
    Other print heads with which I print mixed ABS, TPU and PLA, for example, have to be cleaned more often).


    The material warps, unfortunately. This is common for PA, unless it contains additives of CF.

    I print small parts on glass with Magigoo for better athesion.
    I set the fans on the print head to 5%. This reduces warping, which is increased by the cooling of the part.

    I work differently with large parts.

    From a certain part size with a certain part volume, and when using 0.8 nozzles, the edges inevitably come loose during printing.
    To improve adhesion, I use a mixture of 1/4 wood glue and 3/4 water.
    A 1/10 mixture works just as well. The only difference is that the cross-linking on the printing plate is easier to observe and it holds very well.
    With wood glue, which is the last resort for good athesion, I have to knock the parts off the plate with a hammer, so to speak.
    That's why I print large PA parts on aluminium plates. Because the glass plates don't last long.



    I have also used the Athesionssheets for this. But that had the effect that the sheet came off the printing plate.

    At PA, many people, like me, have developed their own kung fu.


    I am therefore curious to know if there are other ways.

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    Posted · Ultimaker Nylon

    Hi @UlrichC-DE,

    Nice to hear your opinion on Ultimaker Nylon. 
    To clarify, Ultimaker Nylon is a PA6/66 based material. Typically this is a bit more flexible than PA6 (3 GPA modulus, but stiffer as a PA12 (1 GPA modulus). PA6/66 typically has a modulus of 2 GPA (literally in between). 
    Added benefit of Ultimaker Nylon is the reduced moisture absorption speed, so it takes longer before it adsorbes moisture compared to other PA6/66's.

    In terms of adhesion and warping, I might be able to give you some tips.
    Warping for Nylons is mostly caused by crystallization, so avoiding crystallization is key to reduce warping. Typically this means to reduce the build plate temperature (instead of increasing it for amorphous materials like ABS and PC).
    The standard profile setting uses a build plate temperature of 70C, which is above the Tg of the material (50C). What actually happens it that the bottom layers will crystallize and lead to a stronger part.

    Another option, is to set the build plate temperature to 30-40C, which is below the Tg of the material, and less crystallization and thus warping occurs. Try this out, this works quite well if you have warping.
    However, the 'downside' of this is that you get a part of amorphous PA6/66. Typically this means a modulus of about 1 GPa (so it's more flexible) and a part which does not have high temperature stability (50C)

    If you need the added stiffness and heat resistance, you might 'anneal' (crystallize) your printed part at 70C for 1 hour per mm thickness. It's important to have a good temperature control in your oven (typically convection oven).

    Hope this is helpful, let us know if you've tried any of these tips.

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    Posted · Ultimaker Nylon

    Hello @TimonR

    Thanks for the useful information and tips.
    I had already read and tried a lot of things about crystallisation and plate temperatures for PA printing.
    How exactly the adjustment of the temperatures affect the strength of the material I could not find out on the way so far.
    Therefore, thank you for bringing this to the point.

    I will take this into account and adapt it for my purposes.

    I had still forgotten one special thing.
    I always leave the PA in the material station so that it does not draw moisture.
    For series with PA parts, I always keep two rolls of leader in the material station.
    Because when I unpack the rolls fresh and process them, it can also happen that I get a kind of stringing.
    The parts have very fine hardnesses, especially in holes, and the surface becomes uneven.
    (I can get rid of this with a heat gun. This only happens in exceptions. Hence a picture of the kind you would only post in the forum if you had worries).




    If Ultimaker would rename the "S5 Pro Bundle" to "S5 PA Printing tool", I wouldn't mind.

    Many greetings

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    Posted · Ultimaker Nylon

    Interesting, so with Ultimaker Nylon in the Material Station you experience those stringing prints in the holes right?

    The Ultimaker Material Station limits humidity to about 20-30% RH, which is a big improvement over the 50-60% RH that you typically find in offices and workshops.

    If you look into injection molding processing, typically < 0.1 wt% moisture is recommend.

    Using a material station, at 20% RH this means PA6/66 still absorbs about 1 wt% of moisture. This is also the onset of stringing / hairs that you can see here. If you see this kind of stringing, it typically means your material has too much moisture.
    If it bothers you, you can dry the material at 50-70C (e.g. PrintDry). Alternatively, a slightly lower print temperature can also help to reduce stringing (as the material degrades less at higher temperatures).


    If you would store the material in your office, PA6/66 would absorb >3 wt% of moisture, leading to drastic stringing and 'bubbling' sounds during printing (water evaporation and/or material degradation). Basically, this would lead to horrible prints.

    Good luck!

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    Posted · Ultimaker Nylon
    On 10/15/2021 at 4:00 PM, TimonR said:

    Interesting, so with Ultimaker Nylon in the Material Station you experience those stringing prints in the holes right?

    Nope. Sometimes the rolls are wet after unpacking.
    I then put them in the material station to dry early, so to speak.
    Now that you have written that the material station, at least theoretically, does not provide the necessary drying, I will better put them in the oven.

    I store the material in its original packaging and my dealers probably do the same.
    So when a roll is unpacked after a year at the dealer's and half a year in my warehouse, it is sometimes wet.
    Apparently the vacuum packaging doesn't always last, or doesn't last forever. For whatever reason

    Whereas in the meantime I can already tell when I unpack it. The vacuum packaging usually makes a loud noise when you prick it when unpacking.
    Sometimes the noise doesn't happen and you get this result afterwards. At least if you forget to dry your rolls.

    - Stringing
    - Noise during printing
    - The athesion is then also bad. Because the water penetrates the plate coating during printing.

    This can also happen with PVA and PC rolls. It is not common. But if the parts look like the picture above, the filament was definitely too wet.
    The picture came about in my case after I had confused a dried roll with the non-dried one.

    I would like to see a manufacturing date on the filament rolls. (Or am I missing something?)
    There are supposed to be certified rolls in the future. Maybe you will also put a date on the other rolls with a material certificate.
    That would be great. My customers like material certificates very much. I personally think differently 😇


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