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In the world of additive manufacturing, designing parts that are optimized for the printing process is crucial to achieving the best results. When it comes to the EOS SLS 3D printing technology, the material PA 2200 stands out as one of the top choices. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the key considerations and design rules to follow when utilizing the PA 2200 material in JawsTec’s industrial EOS SLS 3D printers.
Table of Contents
- General Design Rules
- Edges and Corners
- Powder Removable Design
- Functional Parts: Loose Connection
- Shape Optimization
With the continuous advancements in additive manufacturing technology, EOS GmbH’s SLS (Selective Laser Sintering) 3D printers have gained significant popularity. Among the various materials available for SLS printing, PA 2200, based on polyamide 12, offers exceptional material properties. JawsTec, a leading provider of 3D printing services, utilizes the PA 2200 material in their industrial EOS SLS printers to deliver high-quality parts for a wide range of applications.
PA 2200 boasts excellent strength, stiffness, and chemical resistance, making it suitable for fully functional plastic parts. Its bio-compatibility and high abrasion resistance further expand its potential applications, including prostheses and movable part connections. With the combination of JawsTec’s cutting-edge EOS SLS technology and the PA 2200 material, you can achieve outstanding results in additive manufacturing.
2. General Design Rules
When designing parts for additive manufacturing with PA 2200 on JawsTec’s EOS SLS 3D printers, several general design rules should be followed. These rules are aimed at optimizing the part’s volume, ensuring easy powder removal, and reducing material and production costs.
To save material and building time, it is recommended to avoid mass volume and excessive wall thickness wherever possible. Parts with excessive volume can result in surface irritations like bumps. Keeping the volume to a minimum not only reduces costs but also improves the overall quality of the printed part.
Minimize Wall Thickness
Designing your part with the minimum material volume is key to optimizing the printing process. This not only helps in reducing material costs but also ensures faster and more efficient production.
“Keep in mind, less volume is equal to less cost.” – EOS GmbH
In additive manufacturing, it is important to consider tolerances to ensure accurate and reliable parts. When designing parts for PA 2200 on JawsTec’s EOS SLS printers, symmetric tolerances should be used whenever possible.
Symmetric Tolerance Zones
To ensure the best results in the sintering process, it is crucial to have symmetric tolerances in the design. The surface of a part is described by triangles, and an unsymmetrical tolerance zone can lead to inconsistencies in the final printed part. By using symmetric tolerances, you can achieve optimal accuracy and avoid potential issues during the printing process.
4. Edges and Corners
Designing parts with proper consideration for edges and corners is essential to improve the overall quality, strength, and safety of the printed part. When utilizing PA 2200 on JawsTec’s EOS SLS printers, the following guidelines should be followed:
Rounded Edges and Corners
Sharp edges and corners that do not serve a specific function should be rounded with a radius. This not only saves material but also reduces the risk of injury and improves the flow of force, minimizing stress peaks. Avoiding sharp corners and edges wherever possible is recommended.
“Sharp Edges and corners which do not fulfill a function should be rounded with a radius.” – EOS GmbH
5. Powder Removable Design
Proper powder removal is crucial in additive manufacturing, especially for complex parts with intricate internal structures. When designing parts with PA 2200 on JawsTec’s EOS SLS printers, it is important to ensure that the powder can be easily removed.
Smart Powder Removal Design
Designing parts with smart powder removal in mind helps to reduce production losses and the effort required for cleaning. This is particularly important for small, long pipes and parts with complex internal structures. By optimizing the design for easy powder removal, you can enhance the efficiency of the printing process.
“Powder must be removable.” – EOS GmbH
6. Functional Parts: Loose Connection
When designing functional parts that require assembly after SLS printing, it is essential to consider the appropriate clearances for loose connections. This ensures that the parts fit together properly without excessive friction or interference.
Loose Connection Distance
For parts that are not built together, a minimum gap size of 0.1mm should be left for loose connections. This allows for a proper fit between male and female parts without creating a press fit. It is important to consider this gap size to ensure the functionality and usability of the final assembled part.
Hinges are commonly used in various applications, and designing them properly is crucial to ensure their functionality and durability. When designing hinges for PA 2200 on JawsTec’s EOS SLS printers, specific guidelines should be followed.
Gap Size for Hinges
The gap size for hinges depends on various variables, including the gap between the bush and bolt, the length of the hinge, the diameter of the bolt, and the thickness of the surrounding bushing. For functional parts that are built assembled, a minimum gap size of 0.3mm in the x/y direction and 0.5mm in the z direction is recommended.
“Gap between bush and bolt (A): 0.3mm – 0.5mm” – EOS GmbH
Advanced Techniques for Hinges
In some cases, it is possible to achieve a smaller gap size for hinges by employing advanced techniques. Changing the orientation of the hinge in software like Magics/Construction and adjusting the thickness of the surrounding bushing can potentially reduce the gap size. Additionally, creating holes for reducing volume and optimizing powder removal can further enhance the hinge design.
Cost optimization is an important aspect of additive manufacturing. When using PA 2200 on JawsTec’s EOS SLS printers, there are several ways to reduce costs and maximize the value of your printed parts.
Designing parts to be as low as possible in the Z-direction helps to reduce machine hours and overall production costs. Additionally, designing parts that are stackable increases the filling rate, allowing for more efficient use of the printing volume.
Reducing Part Volume
Integrated design, lightweight design, and force flow optimization are effective strategies for reducing part volume. By optimizing the design to minimize the material used, you can significantly reduce costs without compromising the functionality or quality of the printed parts.
9. Shape Optimization
Shape optimization is a powerful technique that can be applied to improve the performance and efficiency of printed parts. When designing parts with PA 2200 on JawsTec’s EOS SLS printers, shape optimization can be used to achieve remarkable results.
Reduction of Material Tension
Shape optimization allows for the reduction of material tension in specific areas of a part. By iteratively adjusting the design, the tension can be optimized to improve the overall strength and performance of the printed part.
Integration of Stabilizing Parts
Shape optimization also enables the integration of stabilizing parts without the need for building thicker and heavier walls. This creates a more efficient and lightweight design while maintaining the required strength and stability.
Designing parts for additive manufacturing with PA 2200 on JawsTec’s industrial EOS SLS 3D printers requires careful consideration of various factors. By following the general design rules, tolerances, guidelines for edges and corners, powder removable design principles, and optimizing functional parts like hinges, you can achieve outstanding results. Additionally, cost optimization strategies, shape optimization techniques, and the exceptional material properties of PA 2200 further enhance the quality and value of the printed parts. With JawsTec’s expertise in EOS SLS printing, you can confidently bring your designs to life using the PA 2200 material. Explore the possibilities of additive manufacturing with JawsTec’s industrial EOS SLS 3D printers and experience the unmatched quality and precision of PA 2200.