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adam-mcmahon

Newbie questions on cleaning prints

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Wanted to start out by saying that I am still in the research phase of 3D printing. I've been wanting a 3d printer for some time, just haven't figured out what to get. I am a professional 3D artist by trade, and part of making the decision for me is final print quality. My initial thought was to get the Form 1 by Formlabs. Of all the 3d printers I've seen, it has the cleanest and highest quality prints with no touch up. Caveat is it's expensive and has limited sized prints. Then it came down to Ultimaker 2 and Replicator 2. I've seen enough and read enough to prefer the Ultimaker over the Replicator. Caveat being it's made in another country. A little more downtime for part replacement or any issues I might have.

If I go with the Ultimaker, how difficult is it to clean and polish the print? I plan to print busts and figures. Is sanding the best method or are there alternative methods that retain detail and require less work?

I apologize if this has been covered, I didn't find anything via search but I might have just used poor search strings. I appreciate any info you guys can give me.

 

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Never tried it myself, but found this article:

http://www.3dprinterclassifieds.com/blog/2013/02/using-acetone-vapor-to-smooth-abs-3d-printed-parts/

If ever experimenting with that, I wouldn't use that inside the house.

 

That's interesting. It's hard to tell because of the color and sheen, but it looks like it lost a little detail. Still easier than sanding.

 

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Acetone vapor does cause the part to lose detail - quite a bit and only works for ABS. If you are only printing 1 model per month I strongly recommend using shapeways.com or similar service. You don't have to worry about support with shapeways as they print in the powder which supports the part until it's done (google SLS 3d printing).

Sanding PLA doesn't look good - it loses it's shine/sheen. It gets milky/cloudy instead of shiny. Some say you can put baby oil (or any oil) on it afterwards and then it looks "good as new". For months. I never tried it.

Sanding is great if you will then prime it after. Any automobile primer works great on PLA and then you can paint with any kind of paint you want once it has been primed. Or just leave it as is.

 

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I'm a 3D artist as well. You won't regret a printer, and you'll find million and one things to do with it besides what you initially plan for it.

If you're looking to create small figures, I would look more seriously into SLS, but if you're looking for Bigish 6" sized ones. It's more than adequate detail, faster and cheaper.

You can finish your models by sanding/putty and primer.

Heres what it looks like going from raw print to finish painting. No real sanding involved.

http://www.redicubricks.com/atlas-painting-step-by-step/

MInd you I printed this over 6 months ago, with experience & cura updates, I think it'll look even better if I printed it now.

You will most likely have to break your models into parts to get best results though. So not quite as easy as import and print.

You can check out my other stuff here: http://www.redicubricks.com/ Most of my stuff is printed and painted

 

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I'm a 3D artist as well. You won't regret a printer, and you'll find million and one things to do with it besides what you initially plan for it.

If you're looking to create small figures, I would look more seriously into SLS, but if you're looking for Bigish 6" sized ones. It's more than adequate detail, faster and cheaper.

You can finish your models by sanding/putty and primer.

Heres what it looks like going from raw print to finish painting. No real sanding involved.

http://www.redicubricks.com/atlas-painting-step-by-step/

MInd you I printed this over 6 months ago, with experience & cura updates, I think it'll look even better if I printed it now.

You will most likely have to break your models into parts to get best results though. So not quite as easy as import and print.

You can check out my other stuff here: http://www.redicubricks.com/ Most of my stuff is printed and painted

Thanks for the links. Very cool. Did you print with PLA or ABS?

 

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