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Tips to succeed in 3D printing by using PVA Support Material

PVA-filament-04062020

Tips to succeed in 3D printing by using PVA Support Material

The PVA filament is a key material for the creation of complex parts with the 3D printer on a dual extrusion. If you haven’t used this material yet for creating 3D printing structures, then you are missing out on something outstanding. And you should continue reading this article to find out more about the PVA filaments and learn all the tips and tricks that will cater to you and lead to success.

What do you understand by PVA filament?

When 3D printing is concerned, PVA is the acronym of PolyVinyl Alcohol. It is the same material, which is used in the laundry detergent pods for dissolving in the wash. And the exact principle is used in the creation of the dissolvable support material. Most of the glue sticks are basically Polyvinyl Alcohol; therefore, the filament is comprised essentially into a printable yet solid glue stick for the making of 3D objects.

When should the PVA Filament be used?

Firstly, for the use of PVA filament,you will need a dual extrusion 3D printer. And you are advised to use the PVA Filaments along with PLA as the primary material. The reason we ask you to combine these two materials is PLA prints just at the same temperature as PVA. The dissolvable support material imparts shine to your 3D model and makes sure that the intricate models are highlighted well. And the reason you should use the dissolvable material is –it helps in the creation of specific internal cavities that impart the third dimension to the model and makes it appear more detailed.

Imagine if you had to print a tubular spiral with the help of an auto-generated similar type of support material, at one point of time, you would fail to break away the internal support provided, and the outer layers of your model will have scars from where the support material was supposed to be attached. But, when you make use of the PVA dissolvable support material, you can give it a quick soak and sit back and wait for it to show its charm.

Read: How 3D Printing is Making Businesses More Efficient?

What is the optimum temperature of printing with the PVA Filament?

The brand of PVA filamentthat you are using for your model entirely depends on the optimum temperature for printing. Generally, if you want to have an idea about it, you can print with the PVA 1Filaments at 185 ± 15°C. However, sometimes some of the brands direct their filaments to be used at 215 ± 5°C. Make sure never to go higher than these temperatures. In most cases, you wouldn’t have to. But, we would suggest you read the user manual thoroughly before you get ahead with the work. The reason we recommend not to increase the temperature higher than the above-mentioned is because PVA filaments are prone to cooking, and they can easily carbonize in the nozzle.

As a matter of fact, PVA Filaments have a quick tendency to form clogs quickly. Therefore, we suggest you kept the printing temperatures low and make sure to get the dissolvable support material out of the nozzle when not in use.

Make sure to dry the PVA filament before use:

Just as nylon, PVA filament is a hygroscopic material that means it can absorb water from the surrounding air quite quickly. Thus, when you first open the roll of the PVA filament, make sure to stash the desiccant in the container to store your PVA in the sealed container when not in use. If in case you forget to stash the desiccant and let the roll sit out for a long time, you will notice that your PVA filament starts popping and hissing when you use it for printing. This indicates that the filament has absorbed moisture.

But, you do not have to worry; you can still resolve the issue by merely drying it in the oven for a few hours to extract all the absorbed water from it and then make sure to stash it in a sealed container. When you make use of wholly dried filament, you can get excellent finishing and translucent work texture. However, in case the filament has absorbed even the slightest amount of moisture, the support is not as clear as it should be, and it turns into a yellowish-white texture with complete opacity.

How to dissolve the filament?

The best way that we have come across for cleaning off the PVA filamentsupport material is by breaking it off as much as you can before you proceed to the soaking process. However, you need to be extracareful about not damaging the minute details and intricate designs while you are breaking off the material. Take precautions while removing off the support material and make use of precise skills not to affect the parts that might be encased with the PVA.

Once you have removed all the extra parts of the PVA filament from the base model, you can proceed towards submerging your print in a container with warm water.Also, you do not want the temperature of the water to be at a boiling hot level, as it might damage the PLA material that you have used for printing. However, the hotter the water is, the quicker the PLA support material is going to dissolve. To make things clear for you –you can consider this example: if you won’t take a bath in that water, then you shouldn’t be putting your 3D printed model in it.

When shouldn’t you be using the PVA Filament?

It is evident by now that PVA Filament is an excellent support material for the creation of 3D prototypes. But you cannot use it every time. The use of the PVA filament depends on the base material that you are using for the printing purpose, and also your storage needs are going to affect your decision. PVA materials are excellent for the creation of prototypes, but they shouldn’t be used for the materials that need storage for a long time period, as they are quick to absorb moisture.

Bottom Line:

It is imperative that you made use of the PVA filamentafter you have had gathered complete information on the material in order to obtain the best results. For using it efficiently, you will need a dual extrusion 3D printer. And as we have suggested above, PLA filament should be used in combination with the 3D filaments as these two materials tend to make the best combination. With these, you can create objects with precise and intricate detailed designs.

Are you looking around for the best brand to buy your PVA filament? Well, at MakeShaper, we are known for the quality of products that we deliver. The PVA Filaments that we sell are of the highest quality, and they are manufactured in a way keeping in mind the needs of our users. To order your first batch of PVA support material from us, call us at 1-330-753-0100, today!

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