3D Printing Required Readings
Author: Mech Solutions Ltd
It is one of our ultimate pursuits to make 3D printing as the most cost-effective and convenient way for individuals and industry clients to reify their innovations and designs. We are constantly researching on innovative technologies to break through the barriers in 3D printing and to increase the quality of our products and decrease the price for our clients. In order for us to better serve you, we are sincerely suggesting you read the following information regarding the necessary checks before uploading your design draft.
Please check if the design virtual 3D model meets the following standards:
- The design of the product needs to be watertight
“Watertight” is a term used to describe a 3D mesh suitable for 3D Printing. Imagine the term by pouring water into a hollow model of your design, a watertight mesh would not have any opening to leak the water. The product should be a complete entity without defects, cracks, unsealed gaps and missing features on the mesh. We suggest customers using software, such as AccuTrans, Solidworks, Meshlab, Netfabb, Meshmixer, Alibre, Simplify 3D, and Wings3D, etc to examine the watertight behaviors. Mech Solutions Ltd will manually examine the watertight behavior for each model and provide suggestions if defects existing. We provide FREE service if healing procedure takes less than 5 minutes by our professionals. Our service fee is charged by every 30 minutes.Be careful of your design, and do self-check to avoid extra spending. The free software Blender can examine the non-manifold behaviour.
- The design of the product needs to be manifold
Manifold is a term of topological space that one edge there should be only one surface attached to it. Non-manifold geometry can be defined as any edge shared by more than two faces. Non-Manifold Geometry may occur when a face or edge is extruded but not moved, resulting in two identical edges directly on top of one another. Separate the edge into two, or combine the shared edge are both accepted. Mech Solutions Ltd will manually examine the manifold behavior for each model and provide suggestions if defects existing. We provide FREE service if healing procedure takes less than 5 minutes by our professionals. Our service fee is charged by every 30 minutes.Be careful of your design, and do self-check to avoid extra spending. The free software Blender can help you to quickly examine non-manifold.
- The geometry thickness needs to be checked!
Depending on the printing technology and material options, the product scale and thickness can vary. Thickness is very IMPORTANT for 3D Printing. DO NOT MAKE OBJECTS TOO THIN. For a relatively large product, the minimum thickness should be 1mm, otherwise,the product could be brittle. Due to the modification takes quite long time, our service fee is charged by every 30 minutes.
Our suggested minimum thickness for part of our supplied materials is
|high precision ABS||1-1.5|
- Check the Balance
Try to envision the center of gravity of the physical object and imagine what this object would do if it was placed on a flat surface. If you want your model to stand by itself and not topple over, make sure the bottom of your model has a strong grounding. A good trick is to utilize a base in the models’ design in order to keep the model stable. You can always use other design details to support areas which are fragile.
For a cantilever construction, make sure the beam or the plate is thick enough to support the weight of the end components and avoid any deformation or brittle break during printing.
Mech Solutions Ltd will evaluate the printing difficulties and give customers FREE estimation. For nonfeasible parts that customers insist to keep, customers will take the responsibility if printing failure. Our service fee to fix the unbalanced parts is charged by every 30 minutes.
- Make sure uniform and properly oriented face normals
In order for a 3D model to print successfully, all face normals must face outward away from the surface of the model. Also, all face normals of a surface must conform to the same direction; otherwise 3D printer cannot judge the outer or inner surface, thus, the model will not print correctly. Modifications by us will be charged for every 30 min.
- Be careful about creating details that are flimsy or fragile in form
When you design complex 3D model. BE CAREFUL ABOUT PROTRUDING APPENDAGES. The projecting details or thin parts could be break during or after the rapid prototyping process, or during delivery. Scale as well as the material properties of your rapid prototype print will play a key role in how resistant elements of your model will be to break, thicken the vulnerable areas or flat the projecting could reduce the risks.
Mech Solutions Ltd will evaluate the printing difficulties and give customers FREE estimation. For non-feasible parts that customers insist to keep, customers will take the responsibility if printing failure. Our service fee to fix the unbalanced parts is charged by every 30 minutes.
- Leave clearance for assembly and moving parts
If you are creating separate or interlocking parts, make sure there is a large enough distance between tight areas. Creating enough clearance that the model’s pieces do not fuse together or trap support material inside. We suggest the clearance is 0.5 mm. We also suggest customers to print seperate parts and assemble later, although 3D printing provides unique way to print whole assembly.
Mech Solutions Ltd will provide FREE estimation for assembly parts, and provide suggestions for designing connections such as thread and different kind of snap-fit. For non-feasible parts that customers insist to keep, customers will take the responsibility if printing failure. Our service fee to fix the unbalanced parts is charged by every 30 minutes.
- Model size should NOT exceed the maximum printing size
Each 3D Printer has its maximum printing size, depends on the material and printing technologies. The maximum dimensions in Mech Solutions Ltd reach 1000 mm. If you design big model, we are more than welcome to provide best solutions. Please contact us. Mech Solutions Ltd provide assembly service to make large models, please click to see our previous showcase .
- Remove Smoothing Modifiers
Unlike hard-surface modeling, when creating organic forms in a 3D modeling software, you usually start with a low poly mesh for easy changes and fast building.To create this high-poly feel with a low poly count, you typically use a smoothing modifier for faster render time. However 3D printers do not read smoothing modifiers. Thus, designers need to remove them and raise your sub-division level to re-create the illusion smooth modifiers offer. Now your model has a higher resolution.
Please check the resolution rate of the design model
This is one of the common reason that causes problem when create 3D prints, especially for engineering parts. The resolution rate of the design that has the format.STPor .IGS usually decrease after format conversion to 3D printable format (.SLT or .OBJ). Therefore, the resulted print based on this low-resolution design will have discrepancies to the original design.
Please read the small-batch production page to understand our service of this to produce up to 15 copies by silicone molding.
Please read the strategies to reduct your cost. The general ideas include hollow the unnecessary parts, choose cheaper materials if precision and strength are not your primary concern, reduce the size of your model and self-check your model before giving us.
Please read our design part, especially surface part if you need us to design your idea. Our designers can help you to design complex shapes, repair your model, and heal the surface to give you a perfect model.
Please read our postprocessing part to know our amazing post-processing service. The coloring service includes full colring, spray painting, chrome plating, electroplating, powder coating; surface finish includes matte(uncoated) finish, ground finish, luster finish, glossy finish; our logo printing service includes silk screen printing, water screen printing, stickers printing.
If you have any questions related to the above points, please don’t hesitate to contact us.After your design is uploaded, we will perform checks and convert it to 3D printable formats for free. If there are issues mentioned above, we will contact you with our recommendations.