• M Aerospace RTC

Explaining 3D printing methodologies

For printing technologies that are used in the company, certain rules and tolerances must be met, in order to execute optimal printing. These specs may vary depending on the process or type of printer being used, but they will help ensure a great result.

Next, the general rules and tolerances that must be considered for these processes will be mentioned.

Holes: the minimum diameter for a technology to create a hole without any error is between 0.5mm to 2mm depending on the printer.

Text: refers to the font and size of the text since different sizes have different clarity, a thickness of at least 0.5 mm is recommended to have a clear letter.

Overhangs: the maximum angle at which the wall can be printed without supports is 45 degrees, exceeding this limit will require adding supports along the length of the wall.

Horizontal bridges: the bridges must be a maximum of 40 mm in order to generate straight lines and prevent them from beginning to flex.

Cliffs: for the creation of internal structures, the ideal is that they are 45 degrees, but they can be designed up to 60 degrees without the need for supports.

Wall thickness: on supported walls, i.e. connected to the rest of the print on at least two sides, it is recommended to use a thickness of at least 0.6 mm and on unsupported walls (connected to the rest of the print on less than two sides) the thickness should be at least 1.2mm. This will prevent the walls from breaking down.

Space between features: in the design there must be at least 0.5mm of space between the features of the pieces to guarantee that they do not join when printed.

Escape holes: in most printing processes material is trapped in confined holes, therefore, an escape hole of between 0.2 and 2 mm must be made, depending on the process, to release all that material.

Rounding: It is suggested to design rounded internal and external corners to mitigate transitions between features and reduce sharp stress points.

Tolerances: generally the expected tolerance of a process is between +/- 0.2mm. Remember that machines can be reliable and repetitive if they have been set up correctly.

You can find more recommendations in our Design and Applications in 3D Printing course:


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