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Top 6 Essential 3D Printer Accessories

3D printer accessories are additional tools and parts that fulfill a specific function or requirement of the 3D printing process. For example, some filaments like PVA and Nylon need to be dried to print properly and produce higher quality 3D printed parts and reducing the risk of failing a print job. The most common 3D printer accessories include filament dryers, vacuum containers, dry boxes, different sized 3D printer nozzles, hardened nozzles, 3D printer carts, and 3D printer bed adhesive.

 

  1. Filament Dryer: PrintDry Filament Pro
  2. Vacuum Container: PrintDry Vaccuum Container
  3. Drybox: Polybox
  4. 3D Printer Carts: Raise3D Pro2Plus printer cart Raise3D Pro2 printer cart
  5. 3D Printer Bed Adhesive: Magigoo, Magigoo PP, Magigoo PA
  6. Hardened nozzles: Raise3D hardened nozzle

 

Why Are Filament Dryers Necessary in 3D Printing?

 

Most filaments print at 200C or above, and filaments must be dry before beginning the printing process. If a filament is still wet during printing, the moisture from the wet filament will vaporize in the nozzle. This will have a high chance of printing failure and cause a poor final print quality. Nylon and PVA are two typical examples of filaments absorb moisture from the air. It is necessary to dry them out before printing. It is recommended to dry out PLA and ABS filaments if they were exposed to air for more than one week, especially in an area that contains high humidity. A useful 3D printer accessory that dries out filaments is the PrintDry Filament Dryer Pro. PrintDry Filament Dryer Pro is a storage box that provides a heated environment that bakes filaments. The heated-environment of the dryer allows moisture to escape, ensuring that the filament remains dry.

3D Printer Accessory PrintDry Filament Dryer Pro

 

Vacuum Containers Are Important 3D Printer Accessories

 

Filaments that absorb moisture can be kept dry between print jobs so the next printing job can begin without delay. A 3D printer accessory such as the PrintDry Vaccum Container will keep filaments dry in storage.  The PrintDry Vaccum Container features a special vacuum valve and pump which suck the air out of the container creating a vacuum seal. The vacuum seal prevents moisture in the air from entering the storage container. The PrintDry Vacuum Container indicates when the vacuum seal has been created.  The center of the vacuum valve will collapse inwards from its original dome shape once the vacuum seal is created.

3D Printer Accessory PrintDry Vacuum Container

 

Why and How Do Dryboxes Benefit the 3D Printing Process?

 

When filaments are dried, it means low moisture has left the filament. If the material property is hydrophilic, meaning if the dried filament is left in the open air, it will begin to absorb moisture, making it wet again. And wet filaments lead to a failed print job. Sometimes filaments used in projects with a longer printing time are exposed to the moisture in the air longer. In such cases, after a certain amount of hours, the filaments can become wet again which will lead to a failed print job. A 3D printer accessory such as the Polybox is a dry box that works with industrial 3D printers to keep filaments dry during the printing process. The PolyBox features a filament guide tube from the PolyBox to the 3D printer’s extruder to prevent any moisture from affecting the filament during the printing process.

3D Printer Accessory PolyBox

 

3D Printer Carts Are Practical and Make 3D Printing Easier

 

Industrial 3D printers such as dual extruder 3D printers and large format  3D printers that are larger than desktop 3D printers need a dedicated workspace. Carts are an excellent way of giving the 3D printer its needed workspace. For example, Raise3D offers pedestal printer carts with wheels to roll around. These pedestal carts are designed to keep work at eye-level. Raise3D pedestal carts can bring the printer to the proper operating height so the user can easily operate the 3D printer without having to bend over. Finally, the carts also help to organize any tools needed during the 3D printing process while also storing accessories, filaments, and parts.

3D Printer Accessory. 3D Printer Cart Drawer with Tools
3D Printer Accessory. Close Up of 3D Printer Cart Drawer with Tools

More 3D printer accessories can assist the 3D printing process. However, each application is different, and it is imperative to evaluate what specific applications and printing projects require. For example, it is recommended to keep spares of common consumables such as hot ends, build plates, buildtak, nozzles, and more. For any additional questions, contact Raise3D.

 

3D Printing Adhesive is Necessary for Some Filaments

 

Filaments need to be able to stick to the build plate of the 3D printer while the part is being built up during the printing process. Some 3D printers come with a plain glass plate and it is mandatory to apply an adhesive to the glass plate to make a print stick to the glass plate. 3D printers with glass plates are not recommended because applying the glue is a messy process. The glass plate itself could also break becoming a potential hazard. However, Raise3D industrial 3D printers feature a build plate with a buildtak surface. A buildtak surface is a great sticking surface for most 3D printing materials. However, certain 3D printing materials require extra adhesive to stick to the surface. In such cases, glue sticks, like MagiGoo, are a good complimentary 3D printer accessory.

3D Printer Accessory Magigoo
Magigoo

In general, it is recommended to have at least one extra build plate to swap out for each printer. However, there are certain situations in which having a spare build plate to swap out is practical. For example, it may be necessary to change to a different 3D printing material, and that material may require a different print bed. Other times the production process may be quicker if the printer bed holding a finished 3D printed part is removed and replaced with a fresh print bed to continue the next print job, instead of waiting to take out the finished 3D printed part first.

 

Different Glues Are Necessary for Different Filaments

 

However, sometimes different types of glue are required for different kinds of filaments. For example, MagiGoo also offers MagiGoo PA and MagiGoo PP. MagiGoo PP works with PP filament. The molecular structure of PP filament makes it difficult for the PP filament to adhere to other materials, like the 3D printer bed. MagiGoo PP will help models made with PP filament stick to the printer bed.

3D Printer Accessory Magigoo PP
Magigoo PP

MagiGoo PA is intended to work only with PA filament. There are three main types of PA filament which can either be grafted together or reinforced with carbon or glass. PA has difficulty sticking to the 3D printer build plate with a tendency to warp, making them a challenge to print with. MagiGoo PA is intended to address these PA specific concerns while retaining the high-quality and user-friendly design of the original MagiGoo.

3D Printer Accessory Magigoo PA
Magigoo PA

How Do Different Sized 3D Printer Nozzles Impact 3D Printing?

 

Having different 3D printer nozzles is essential for different types of print jobs. For example, bigger nozzles, like a .8 3D printer nozzle, prints out more material and a thicker layer height. This means the print job can be completed faster. It is common to use a bigger nozzle with a thicker layer height to quickly produce a 3D printed part. However, print quality and finer features are usually compromised in the final printing result. For example, the print layer will be more obvious in the final 3D printed part. However, this compromise may not matter for certain applications or can be adjusted in the post finishing. In such cases, this form of printing will save printing time. In contrast, smaller nozzles, like a .4 3D printer nozzle are necessary to print a thinner layer height.

The thinner layer height and smaller nozzle sized will be able to produce finer details and produce a better print quality in the final 3D printed part. In general, doubling the value of the layer height should cut the print time down by about half, but it always varies from model to model.

3D Model
Nozzle Size Layer Height Print Time
.4mm nozzle .2 layer height 42 hours, 15 minutes, and 32 seconds
.8mm nozzle .4 layer height 16 hours, 36 minutes, and 52 seconds

 

Why Are Hardened Nozzles Essential For 3D Printing?

 

Nozzles do not just come in different sizes. There are also hardened nozzles that are mandatory for applications that require filaments made with composite materials such as carbon fiber, glass fiber, etc. For a full list of such filaments, click here. Composite materials are harder than brass and will be abrasive to the brass nozzle. This will damage the brass nozzle by enlarging the nozzle tip size. When this occurs, the print file settings no longer match the actual nozzle size on the 3D printer. In this situation, the print quality decreases, and the risk of a failed print job increases.

There are three kinds of hardened nozzles. The first is a brass nozzle with a hardened coating, such as the current hardened nozzles on the Raise3D printers. Since the nozzles are mainly brass, the heat conductivity is not affected, meaning the printing temperature is not affected much. Finally, brass nozzles with a hardened coating are the most affordable. However, it is recommended to keep spare hardened coated nozzles to replace the hardened nozzle whenever the coating wears off.

The second type is a high-speed steel nozzle with WS2 coating. It is abrasion-resistant, with a high printing performance, and priced between the brass nozzle with a hardened coating and the brass nozzle with a ruby tip.

The third and final type of hardened nozzle is a brass nozzle with ruby tips. Brass nozzles with ruby tips have an overall good printing performance, but they are also quite expensive. It is not uncommon for brass nozzles with ruby tips to be priced as high as $100 per nozzle.

 

 

 

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