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Printing flexible filament

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Yes, you can print PLA Flex on both. It is a bit more rigid then rubberlike, but for example it is the material used for the https://www.ultimaker.com/blogs/news/2014/08/19/3d-printed-fashion-suite-launched-by-xyz-workshop-x-ultimaker dress. Usually 2 drips of sewing machine oil in the bowden tube are recommended, but I don't think necessary.

I have also printed with ninjaflex which is much more flexible. It can be printed on both the Ultimaker Original and 2.

The way I printed it, which I think can be improved, was by printing it fairly slow (around 20mm/s) and very hot (245ºC)

I had retraction enabled and high tension on the feeding spring.

I printed parts for an e-NABLE hand with ninjaflex, a test cube and a few Ultimaker Robots.

 

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I have just used Flexible PLA (from Ultimaker) without oil and at 210ºC[edit gr: 225C see below], print speed 50mm/s and normal tension on the feeder.

The only thing that is a bit different is the feeder I am using is one that Daid uploaded recently, it was the last model before the mass production one I think. I find it to be much more rigid. Everything prints well using it even bronze fill from ColorFabb with standard tension too !

 

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I have just used Flexible PLA (from Ultimaker) without oil and at 210ºC, print speed 50mm/s and normal tension on the feeder.

The only thing that is a bit different is the feeder I am using is one that Daid uploaded recently, it was the last model before the mass production one I think. I find it to be much more rigid. Everything prints well using it even bronze fill from ColorFabb with standard tension too !

 

Hi Stu, thanks for the info! What machine are you using?

 

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Hi Sander

mine is a UM2, just updated profile too.

One other change I made when installing the replacement filament feeder is that I moved the gear on the stepper motor slightly closer to the motor (maybe 3mm) it could be that this was also a factor in my improvements.

The first time I tried to use flexible I did adjust the tension up high but ended up with a blockage of filament inside the extruder feeder. so slacked off back to normal and all works perfectly.

EDIT: Just tried this morning with some flexible and now remember the temp is actually 225ºC, anything less and the extrusion is 'bloby'

 

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Hi Merardo,

The feeder I use (as uploaded by Daid of Ultimaker) is https://www.youmagine.com/designs/ultimaker2-feeder-printable it is more substantial than the production model, it is not prone to problems that can be caused by tightening the screws too much.

I changed to this design as I had noticed an occasional problem caused by part of the plastic inside the feeder that can be bent and occasionally touch the bearing and I think cause random under extrusion (see picture below), this is a result of when changing the filament that is to say its the new filament being inserted that can bend this plastic.

UM Extruder

https://www.dropbox.com/s/ctoc03fntlj80fy/UM%20Extruder.jpg?dl=0

All of my printing is of a high quality now

good luck

 

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Hi, i was just reading some posts about this topic and i was wondering about the change of filament from non flexible to the pla flex. Do i need to raise the temperature to 245°C to change the filament as well as to print objects? What about the bed temperature, i believe i read somewhere that it needed to be around 60°C. I´m using an Ultimaker2. I hope you could help me. Thanks

 

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I've done it on UMO and UM2.  The most important thing for me was to oil the filament.  One drop every meter or so.  Also I print hot and slow - 10mm/sec and between 220C and 240C.  

If the filament absorbs water you will hear it sizzling and it will come out foamy and it will work but you probably won't like it.  So keep the filament very dry. You might be able to dry the filamnent by unspooling a few meters and heating it on the heated bed at the glass temp for 6 hours with a towel over it. Haven't tried that yet. But brand new ninjaflex will be fine.

Here is something I printed in ninjaflex:

5a331ea43bfce_2016-05-3014_04_10.thumb.jpg.2d9d03615b7364804312d95aeae3a562.jpg

Edited by Guest

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I've done it on UMO and UM2.  The most important thing for me was to oil the filament.  One drop every meter or so.  Also I print hot and slow - 10mm/sec and between 220C and 240C.  

If the filament absorbs water you will hear it sizzling and it will come out foamy and it will work but you probably won't like it.  So keep the filament very dry. You might be able to dry the filamnent by unspooling a few meters and heating it on the heated bed at the glass temp for 6 hours with a towel over it. Haven't tried that yet. But brand new ninjaflex will be fine.

Here is something I printed in ninjaflex:

5a331ea43bfce_2016-05-3014_04_10.thumb.jpg.2d9d03615b7364804312d95aeae3a562.jpg

In my months of experience with filaflex recreus and ninjaflex there’s easy to confuse bubbles from printing too slow for the temperature than actual humidity. Is a wide miss conception from old printing days.

Basically this is what happens

You push filament, filament reaches the temperature and it becomes almost an oil liquid. If the filament feeding speed is slower than how fast it drips then there’s air gaps between exit and input making a fake bubble effect. Basically with bowdens the amount of pressure than you can do is way too low. Maybe using a better bowden of not PFA or even the capricorn blue ptfe that e3d resells could help ona bowden.

So to summarize. Flexible filaments do not absorb water.

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>So to summarize. Flexible filaments do not absorb water.

I thought it was strange. I had printed ninja flex many times before with no boiling but the most recent time it seemed to be boiling. This filament is several years old now. I'll try printing faster next time.

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>So to summarize. Flexible filaments do not absorb water.

I thought it was strange. I had printed ninja flex many times before with no boiling but the most recent time it seemed to be boiling. This filament is several years old now. I'll try printing faster next time.

I forgot to add. That this is for ninjaflex (the really flexible kind) and recreus filaflex. That’s the ones I been using. Semiflexibles never give me an issue but also don’t know if they absorb or not water.

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