Our tips for better 3D printing are:

  • Be sure that each part is a closed solid. If you have a collection of surfaces stitch them into a water-tight solid using Ashlar-Vellum’s and advanced tools and options.
  • Understand the resolution the 3D printer:
    • Configure the 3D mesh file to be generally twice as fine as the smallest increments on the machine.
    Take advantage of Ashlar-Vellum software’s unique ability to control the meshing parameters for each part within the file. Copy the model to a mesh within Ashlar-Vellum 3D modeling software and adjust each part individually, rather than simply exporting the entire thing to an STL file.
  • Make the mesh file as “light” as possible vis-à-vis the complexity of your shape for more reliability on the 3D printer. Lighter files have:
    • Fewer facets
    • Courser meshes
    • Flat planes
    • Straight edges
    • Smaller file size
  • Eliminate the need for support whenever possible in our design. Anywhere there is an overhang it requires something underneath during the printing process. Supports then must be discarded after printing, costing time and wasting plastic.
  • Learn how to model products that will print successfully by controlling the infill. Walls with much thickness will often print as a skin with a web in the middle. They look solid but are not so in reality. Experiment with the printer’s settings to make the best wall thickness of a part.
  • Understand print direction on your 3D printer. If you’re printing something that is like a long rod, the way the printer prints it gives it a grain. If the grain is in the direction of print it may break easily. If printed against the grain it will be stronger. Experiment to see what works best for a particular part and printer.