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3D Printing: Understanding more about ASA filament applications

Today 3D printing isn’t simply a trend, but the need for the hour. After years of experimentations and tests, the market is now flowing with different types of 3D printing machines and filaments. One such popular 3D printing option is the ASA filament.

What is an ASA filament?

Also known as Acrylonitrile Styrene Acrylate, the ASA filament is your go-to amorphous variant of thermoplastic terpolymer that shares several similarities to the ABS filament. The structural difference between these two is the fact that the ASA makes use of acrylic elastomer while the ABS makes use of butadiene elastomer.

ASA is popular as the engineering plastic given its property to maintain appearance & impact resistance. Even after the filament is exposed to prolonged periods of rain, air, cold, as well as salty seawater, it retains its make and looks for long.

This is the reason it can be used for the creation of several products that we use and see on a daily basis.

But, before we go into the uses and applications of the ASA filament, let us take a look into the advantages and disadvantages of using it.

ASA: Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Highly resistant to the UV rays
  • Resistant to impact or wear and tear
  • The high temperature for glass transition

Cons:

  • Exceptional ventilation required to avoid the potentially toxic fumes
  • Extruder temperature very high
  • High price tag

Uses/Applications of ASA Filament

While the ASA filament is near-perfect in all sense, it has just ventured into the application market. With time, the ASA filament will surely see large scale applications. However, this doesn’t mean that the ASA filament isn’t just as popular now.

Its popularity can be known through its wide range of applications. Let us take a look at some of them in brief.

1-Automotive Exterior Parts:

As compared to other materials available in the market for the creation of automotive exterior parts, the ASA is relatively cheaper with a plethora of features. With regards to automotive applications, the ASA filament can be easily used for creating a prototype of parts such as bumper covers, housing for side view mirrors, dashboard holders, or grilles.

2-Tooling:

Printing with the ASA filament results in the production of sturdy yet lightweight parts. So, if you are in need of tools, ASA filament can be used for such 3D printing requirements. With this filament, you can print yourself ergonomic grips/handles, assembly jigs & fixtures, tool caddies, dunnage, and so much more.

3-Outdoor Applications:

Apart from the applications mentioned above, the ASA filament is something that can be used outdoors without any probable issue. Given its resistance to the Sun’s UV rays, it is optimally suited to be used for outdoor needs. If you are someone who wants to build their very own garden from scratch, you can build some cute and exclusively customized flower pots with the ASA filament.

Why just stop there?

You can also print some gnomes to take care of your garden with the ASA filament. Additionally, ASA filament can also be used to create signage. Other items you can print with the ASA filament include roof coverings, junction boxes for electrical installations, toys, pipes or construction profiles, and so many more!

Read: Comparing 3D Printing Filament Features: ABS vs. ASA Filament

ASA Filament Use: Recommendations

For 3D printing enthusiasts that generally use the ABS filament, the use of ASA will be just as easy. With ASA filament, you get access to a piece that is highly resistant to any damage caused by water and sun. For ones with no training or any experience in dealing with the ASA filament, here are some recommendations you can follow:

  • Avoid Drafts:

Just like several other 3D printing materials, the ASA filament is highly sensitive to abrupt temperature changes during the 3D printing process. When printing with the ASA filament, it can be beneficial if you print with a device that has closed printer casing or room that is free of any drafts.

  • Use the Kapton Tape:

In order to improve the adhesion of the object being printed with the device’s printing base, you need to use the BuildTak or Kapton Tape. You can also increase the adhesion further with the use of the DimaFix.

  • Minimize the layer fan:

Once you have achieved the right adhesion, you can focus on printing quality to avoid issues such as overheating or cracking. In order to avoid these issues, it is highly recommended that you use your layer fan with the minimum setting on. Keep in mind that you should decrease the overall power by 10 to 25 percent, depending on the item being printing with the ASA filament.

This allows proper solidification of your print while avoiding the overheated areas. Low layer fan speed ensures that there is no abrupt temperature change that might cause cracking to your printed item.

  • HIPS Support Material:

Given the fact that ASA filament works as a versatile filament, you might have to incorporate it with a sturdy support material such as HIPS. Talking about this support material, it is a D-Limonene used widely in conjunction with the ABS filament.

Given its similarities shared with ABS, it can be incorporated with the use of the simplest and highly-used method for post-processing which is acetone smoothing. In this process, you introduce the piece to a steam bath consisting of acetone. This brightens and softens the item’s surface layer.

You can also opt for machining of the part at low/medium speeds, which can later be glued & painted directly. There is no need for any previous primers.

ASA Filament Caution: Fumes

When printing with the ASA filament, you need to print in a room that comes with high-quality ventilation. The fumes emitted by the ASA filament can be potentially dangerous when inhaled. It emits a smelly & intense smoke that comes from Styrene present in this plastic compound. This fume can cause health issues such as headaches, irritation, and so much more.

When printing with the ASA filament, make sure you wear the right kind of mask to avoid breathing in the smoke. Further, make sure your exhaust comes with a filter or fan for the extraction of these fumes.

Conclusion

The ASA filament might be prone to water absorption. So, if you have plans to print with this filament, make sure you dry it properly before the same can be used for printing purposes. You can use your regular oven to dry out the filament. However, make sure that the oven temperature is set below the ASA filament’s glass transition temperature for perfect drying.

Looking for a top-quality seller for ASA filament? At MakeShaper, we house some of the best and quality-tested filaments ranging from the classic ABS to PETG filament. Our prices are highly affordable and available in a wide range of colors and sizes as per requirement. If you shop today, you can get amazing deals on some of our filaments. So, choose what you need from our high-quality 3D filament inventory today!

How can 3D printing revolutionize the world?

3D printing, also known as additive manufacturing, possesses the potential for democratization of the production of the goods. This could include everything from medical to food supplies and machinery to the coral reefs. As the future approaches, one question that ponders over everyone’s mind is whether 3D printing can actually revolutionize the way things work.

But what makes up for a good quality 3D print? It sure is the 3D printer filament that you choose for your printing machine. Sourcing from a reliable seller is very critical for producing high-quality prints. However, the budget can be a constraint at times. This doesn’t mean you have to compromise on quality. You can always find high-quality, cheap 3D printer filament from reputed sellers.

Now that you know what plays a critical role in 3D printing let us take a look at some of its revolutionizing effects.

Future of 3D Printing: What Does it Hold?

1-Fight against Homelessness and Hunger:

If you are a 3D printing enthusiast, you know how great cheap3D printer filament can be for creating mini houses for kids to play with. Now, imagine this on a massive scale. Of course, creating a house from 3D materials from scratch could be way too hectic but it surely has some potential. If not everything, 3D printing can solve various existing issues by creating highly durable parts for home construction at cheaper prices. This in the future will surely help tackle the increasing incidences of homelessness.

Another place where 3D printing might score a touchdown is hunger. Various NGOs dedicated to the maintenance of better health levels for the less fortunate ones are now exploring the potential of 3D printing in the food industry. They hope that come future, they might be able to create a 3D printer for food that can be customized to be nutritionally appropriate as the meals are synthesized one by one. These printers instead of using cheap 3D printer filament will be using materials such as oils, flours, mineral capsules, and so on.

2-Transformation of Modern Medicine:

Apart from being a major light bringer for the hungry population of the world, 3D printing is also dubbed to revolutionize the world of modern medicine. With 3D printing techniques, there will be feasibility to acquire more sturdy tools and medical necessities to ensure that more lives can be saved. When employed on a large scale, 3D printing also houses the possibility to create a 3D printed heart (artificial) to help save a life. It could also be used for the creation of high-quality basic tools such as clips for umbilical cords.

3D printing can also be used in case of emergencies to ensure that all critical tools and medicines are available within a medical facility.

3-Protection of the Planet:

If you have ever used a 3D filament for printing, you would have surely noticed that some of the variants tend to produce a certain amount of toxic fumes. Depending on the variant of cheap 3D printer filament you purchase, there can be a certain amount of toxic fume coming out during the printing process. However, the researchers dedicated to the future of 3D printing are now concocting new variations of cheap 3D printer filament that shall be based on algae.

This can help in minimizing the pollution level in the atmosphere. Another aspect where 3D printing can play a major role is re-cycling. 3D printing techniques of the modern era allow the use of old materials to create new ones. This, in turn, increases the chances of sustainability. Utilization of the waste products to create something new is the way to go for a planet that is struggling to keep up with the environmental changes. With a reduction in energy consumption and waste-recycling methodologies, 3D printing is sure the future for appropriate climate control.

4-Access to Modern Innovations:

How many times have you seen something that can help the environment but couldn’t purchase it because it was way too costly? Yes, the scientific community on a regular basis comes up with techniques and technologies that can help benefit the environment. However, given the fact that a lot goes into the making of such innovations and lack of popularity, they usually are priced way too high.

With the use of cheap 3D printer filament, the dream of making modern innovations accessible to the general public can be achieved as the future comes by. Currently, modern innovations are limited to specialized labs and technical universities. This makes access to sustainability a tough affair. As the future approaches, scientists are working on the affordable replication of technologies and innovations that will be available for everyone. This, in turn, will help the local change-makers create a better impact and motivate others to participate in a sustainable lifestyle.

5-Cheaper Prototypes:

Although this process is already out in the market, its wide-scale implementation is still a story for the future. Creating prototypes of products or technologies with classic methodologies could be a time-taking affair and pricey as well. With cheap 3D printer filament by your side, creating a cheaper prototype is no more an issue.

This could be applicable in several industries ranging from fashion to everyday needs. So, 3D printing is surely something that you should look out for in the future.

6-Aerospace & Automotive World:

The aerospace or automotive world isn’t the one that is unaware of this new technology. 3D printing technologies are being used in the automotive world for quite some time. With the help of cheap 3D printer filament, the aerospace and automotive industry can now ease up the phases such as:

  • Designing (Product Development, Prototyping)
  • Assembly (Printed Jigs Designed for Hands-On Assembly)
  • End-User Components (Brackets, Brake Pads, Wheels)

The modern-day 3D printing methodologies implemented in the automotive and aerospace world is metal-based 3D printing & FDM for mission-critical parts. The manufacturing of decently strong functional parts is today’s story, but with time, its wide-scale implementation is here for sure. 3D printing with cheap 3D printer filament can ensure that the demand & supply chain can be maintained. Plus, 3D printing can also be used for the creation of customizable machinery, spare parts, and even complete vehicles.

Conclusion

From scientists to innovators, everyone has been using 3D printing technologies to make a better impact on the future. Even the ISS (International Space Station) is experimenting with parts that can be manufactured specifically in space with the use of 3D technology. This can help avoid any need for risky and expensive transportation of products and parts from Earth. Apart from this, cheap 3D printer filament can help keep the costs of manufacturing towards the down low while ensuring that the process is faster and highly efficient.

Looking for some of the best cheap 3D printer filament? At MakeShaper, we house an extensive collection of 3D printing filaments of various types. Starting from PLA filaments to PETG filaments, we have it all. To know more about our products, give us a quick call at (330) 753-0100 or write to us at makeshaper@villageplastics.com.

The 7 Most Important Things to Know Before Using PVA Filament

Thanks to the advanced technology, people can now create three dimensional objects using 3D printers. It has helped people from various walks of life to create objects that were impossible to create before. From creative projects to selling items online, 3D printing has made things possible for people. It has given unique way to peopleto create unique objects and sell them.

The one thing that makes 3D printing possible is the filament. Filaments are like the raw materials that are used for creating 3D objects. There are many types of 3D printing filaments and one of them is the PVA filament. It is more of a support filament than anything else, nevertheless it is an important component in 3D printing. Using the right filament and in the right way is important for getting the desired results. Using the PVA filament can help you get the right results.

Here are the 7 most important things you need to know before using the PVA filament:

1. What is 3D Printing

If you are new to 3D printing, you probably want to know in technical terms what it is. It is a process of creating 3-dimensional solid objects of a digital design. You can use 3D printing software to create and print high-quality 3D objects using filaments. In the 3D printing process, the filament material is used to lay down several layers after it is melted to create an object. These layers are thin and look like a thinly sliced horizontal cross-section of the resulting object. 3D printing is one of the best ways to create different objects as compared to conventional manufacturing methods. It is much faster and uses less materials. All you need is a good 3D printer and the right filament to go with it. In few easy steps you can create objects for your various needs.

In 3D printing process, the PVA filament is used with other filaments like the PLA as a support material. Some objects need support while printing as they could fall or break off before they dry. Letters like T, or objects that are hanging and have hallow designs need support an the PVA filament is the best option.

2. What is PVA Filament?

PVA the PolyVinyl Alcohol, is a 3D printing filament. It is a soft, biodegradable polymer and water-soluble material. It is also known as the PVAL of PVOH. It is made by the process of polymerization of vinyl acetate to form polyvinyl acetate, which is then hydrolyzed to create the PVA filament.

The PVA material can easily dissolve in water, which makes it the perfect option as a support material. After the object is created it can be put in water where the PVA will dissolve, leaving a clear 3D object in desired design.

PVA filament is very useful for creating complex shapes especially the one with partially enclosed cavities. The PVA filament support can be easily removed by dissolving the object in warm water.

3. Why use PVA Filament

There are many advantages of using the PVA filament. The primary advantage is that is water-soluble, which makes it easy to use and remove. You can use them to make prototype model before making the actual object.

The PVA filament is also biodegradable and sustainable material for 3D printing. It is a non-toxic material without any oil content in it. Unlike other filaments, the PVA filament is one of the most user-friendly material to work with. They are great for creating testing object as you can easily dissolve them and not worry about space for extra objects.

It does not require additional solvent, which saves time and money. And, PVA does not need any additional hardware too. You can say that PVA is a hassle-free material to work with when you want to create 3D objects.

4. When not to use PVA Filament

There is no doubt that the PVA is a great support material and as well as protype 3D printing material. But it cannot be used all the time. It all depends on your 3D printing and storage needs. For instance, the PVA filament is great for prototyping, but they are not great for creating object you want to last for a long time. As soon as it comes in contact with water or moisture, it will dissolve or lose some of its character. If you have storage issues, the PVA filament should no be used as it can dissolve in water, humidity, moisture, and high temperature.

PVA has a low melting point of 190°C and in high temperature of 200 degree centigrade, it will start pyrolysis and form a jam like structure while printing. You should not use it for 3D printing for objects that require high-temperature.

5. 3D Printing Setting using PVA Filament

It is important to use the PVA filament wisely so that you can get the best results. First you need a printer that offers dual extrusion. It is important to have the right 3D printer for using PVA filament 1.75. Never use PVA along unless you want the 3D object for few hours of not for long. Use PLA filament along with the PVA as they both have very similar printing temperature. Choose printing objects that have intricate designs, or parts that have internal cavities.

Temperature setting is the most important part of 3D printing irrespective of what material you use. Likewise, correct temperature setting for the PVA filament is very important as it can dissolve and become a lump in high temperature. Depending on the brand you are using, the temperature setting can change. Some may work at 180 degrees centigrade while some may work in higher temperature.

6. Storage of the PVA Filament

The PVA filament needs carful storing as it is very venerable to moisture and high temperature. Make sure you store them in places where it can remain dry. Store them in airtight containers with silica at room temperature. Proper storage will ensure that the PVA material last for a long time. It is very useful for making objects that are not required to last for long such as laundry detergent tags.

7. Dry PVA Filament

It is important to first dry the PVA filament before using it. PVA filament can easily absorb water and dissolve quickly. It can easily absorb water from the air. You have to be very careful when using the PVA filament. You can keep it dry with the help of the desiccant and use it for storing as well. If you don’t store the PVA filament properly, it will not help in providing high-quality print. Dry the filament well before using it so that you can enjoy the 3D printing results.

The Bottom-Line

The PVA filament is one of the best ways to print 3D objects that have internal cavities or intricate designs. They work best when they are used as support material for printing as they are water-soluble. Its high flexibility and ease of use make the PVA filament one of the best materials for 3D printing.

Makeshaper is your one stop destination for finding high-quality 3D printing filaments. We have a wide range of high-quality 3D printer filaments for various printing purposes We have a wide range of filament options including PLA, ABS, ASA, HIPS, PVA, PETG and more. Our products are made from high-quality materials are designed to provide you the best printing solution. Call or email us at - (330) 753-0100 and Email: makeshaper@villageplastics.com