Everyone can be a Maker? But how does 3D printing anyway? Which software is compatible? And what does CAD, STL, FDM? Technology and use are summarized below.
The basic technology of the 3D printer was around 1985 by Chuck Hull, co-founder of 3D Systems developed.
Under a 3D printer is meant a device that is able to generate a real, physical object from a digital 3D model. Unlike, for example, a CNC devour that brings a workpiece by removing material into the desired shape, a 3D printer creates objects using the so-called additive manufacturing.
How Does it Work?
There are different plastic materials for 3D printing. The material is processed in a molten, liquid state. They melt at different temperatures, which is why most printers for the home work with one material. This is there but in different colors.
The extruder melts the material at very high temperatures and injected it in layers from bottom to top on the base plate to the finished object.
Plexiglas protects the still hot and liquid material from air circulation and so before deformations during cooling. The printer box of hobby devices usually creates objects from 20 to 50 cm length. The firmware of the printer is only compatible with a specific software, Mac, Windows and / or Linux.
Although early 3D printers could produce only small portions at a moderate precision as a design prototype, can be equipped with modern appliances large and complex structures with amazing accuracy produce. Various techniques are used:
#1 Selective Laser Sintering (SLS)
In laser sintering, a strong laser is used to fuse particles of plastic, metal, glass or ceramic in the desired shape to each other. The object is thereby created layer by layer from a powder of the raw mixture, wherein the laser is irradiated in each layer the areas that need to stay together afterwards.
SLS is an advantage in the ability to use a variety of different raw materials with this printing process. Laser sintering is also well suited to produce parts with high heat resistance.
#2 Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM)
The Fused Deposition Modeling is an additive manufacturing process in which molten raw material gathered through a nozzle in layers to the finished object.
The nozzle is controlled by servomotors and are the material selectively by extrusion free, which then solidifies. Usually, 3D printer that operate with FDM, a plurality of nozzles: A true for the raw material and a further optionally necessary support structures, which must be removed after printing.
#3 Stereolithography (SLA)
The Stereolithography was patented in 1986 by founder Chuck Hull 3D Sytems. In this technique, a special light-sensitive resin is used as a raw material, the layer manner is contacted with a UV laser to solidify.
Because the object is created here in a liquid composition, are support structures that need to be removed after printing, with more complex forms an inevitable byproduct of Sterolithographie.
Unlike the Fused Deposition Modeling the support structures made here of the same material as the object actually printed.