CREAT3D 3D printing tips: printing in colorFabb HT

Friday, 8 July 2016  |  Sabina Gonzalez-George

Printing with colorFabb High Temperature filament

Desktop 3D printers are continuously developing and the applications are widening, with companies using desktop 3D printers for tooling, jigs & fixtures, casings, enclosures, sacrificial parts, end-use parts, sales tools, moulds, components that keep your production line moving, and more!

colorFabb HT filament

 

Leading filament manufacturer colorFabb have been beavering away in their test labs to develop new filaments with a varying range of properties. Their latest filament, colorFabb_HT, is a high temperature 3D printing material with prints withstanding temperatures up to 100°C, making it ideally suited for engineering applications.

 

We have been printing in colorFabb HT and are impressed with the results. Whilst it is a material recommended for more advanced 3D printing users as you need to adjust your settings, it is well worth the effort.

 

What is HT and how is it different?

colorFabb HT filament is made with Eastman Amphora™ HT5300 3D polymer. The material’s key property is a glass transition temperature of 100°C, making colorFabb HT a highly temperature resistant material, as well as producing an excellent overhang ability, toughness and chemical resistance. It is also low-odour and styrene-free.

 

HT5300 is an excellent material to apply to prototypes, models and component parts especially when using in form, fit and function testing where additional durability and toughness are required.

 

Let’s see the output

We’ve been printing in HT and here are our results for an air intake…

 

Air intake printed in colorFabb HT with supports intactAir intake printed in colorFabb HT

Overall we are very impressed with colorFabb HT. It printed consistently well and has a smooth finish, with no visible stringing. We also found it to bridge well. 

 

With all the benefits the material offers, the only small downside is you need to take greater care when printing. It is harder to print with than PLA (as you’d expect) and you need to fine tune your print and/or printer settings. For example, we printed this without a brim to begin with, but experienced warping so we then re-printed with brim to help with adhesion to the print bed. We also used very strong tack on a heated bed.

 

Print: Air Intake

Design by: kaptenfredde  

Source: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:504848

Print settings: 160 microns, 20% density using 118g material

 

CREAT3D tips for 3D printing in colorFabb HT

colorFabb HT needs to be printed at high temperatures, with a really hot bed. colorFabb suggest a print temperature range of 200°C – 250°C with a bed temperature between 100°C and 120°C. We found that the top end of the temperature ranges worked best for our printer.

 

Your print settings may be slightly different to ours and colorFabb’s listed range, so it definitely worth experimenting at the early stages to get the correct settings for your print and printer (see colorFabb HT full tech specs for more info).

 

Here's a couple of tips we'd recommend for printing in HT

  • Try to keep conditions as stable as possible, the material needs to cool consistently to reduce the risk of lifting / warping
  • A nice hot bed is a must, with strong tack/glue
  • Strong cooling fans are a no-no. We turned off our additional cooling fans to reduce risk of warping. If you can turn the fans off in the printer software, that’s the ideal, otherwise you’ll need to manage them directly on the printer during the print
  • Consider using brims to help with adhesion of the part to the print bed and reduce lifting during print

 

colorFabb HT is available in Black, White, Light Grey, Dark Grey and Clear in 1.75mm and 2.85mm diameters, priced at £27.00 excl. VAT per 700g spool.

           

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