3D printing with Fortus 250 (ABS plastic)

Local guidelines by Yngve Hafting

General procedure :

  • Tool paths for the printer can be made in the program "Insight" on ifiserv-631.ifi.uio.no (no printer is attached to this machine).
  • The tool paths directory is then zipped and submitted to Devilry
  • For INF4500 - files will be collected and printed once a week

If you have problem logging into ifiserv-631.ifi.uio.no, see FAQ

Simple toolpath generation procedure

  1. Starting point - a STL file from SolidWorks
  2. In SolidWorks save/stl menu : Options:
    • Binary format
    • Resolution : Custom : Deviation = 0.02mm : Angle = 3deg
    • If printing an assembly : Save all comp of assembly to single file
  3. Remote login to: ifiserv-631.ifi.uio.no
  4. Start up Insight
  5. First time use: Make sure that Insight is set up to use the Fortus 250c printer
  6. Minimal setup example using the fast/sparse interior option.
  7. Bad/good part orientations with respect to minimal support generation.

More advanced toolpath generation procedure (illustrated in an older version of Insight)

Removal of support material (post processing) can be more or less difficult and time consuming. Printing of support material adds to the build time and is costly, so it is often a good idea to minimize it during path generation.

  • Inspecting tool paths (support/model paths).
  • Dimensional deviations in small structures (why tool path inspection can be important). This problem (may) be handled by reducing tool path widths.
  • How to avoid possible problems (weakness) due to delamination (walls with no contact). Change contours or/and internal raster width. Walls with no visible air in between, will normally be glued together even with no raster in between.
  • How to reduce support in a way that will almost not affect surface quality.
  • How to remove all support (if you can tolerate coarse finish). Will increase build speed and ease post processing. Make sure that you have support left under the bottom of the part (or it will glue to the build plate). Horizontal holes with diameter smaller than 3-4mm can often best be printed out with no support inside (otherwise difficult to post process).
  • How to selective remove support.
  • Changing the printer speed / Z layer resolution .
  • How to estimate build time and model/support volume

Some tips