The 3D metal printing is a good technological innovation that can better serve the aerospace, automotive and medical sector if some basic engineering and design rules are adhered to. Amazing designs with strong and ideal features can be created with the 3D printing technology that can cause an influx of demand. Some tips to guide your creativity with 3D metal printing ate outlined below.
Design Tip 1: Be specific with 3D printing
It is not advisable to try modifying designs originally applied in conventional manufacturing such as pressure die casting, plastic injection molding etc. Let your design be crafted from the beginning of the manufacturing process to save the stress of re-adjusting an already existing design.
Design Tip 2: Know your machine type
3D metal printing is done using different types of machines and technologies and the applicable design rule varies for each machine type. So ensure you have a good knowledge of your machine type. Some machines like the Renishaw AM250 powder bed printer print on materials such as stainless steel, aluminum, and titanium. So knowing your machine’s effectiveness and work specification is an important rule to put in mind.
Design Tip 3: Consider the thickness of the wall
The wall thickness of the printer should not be lower than 0.5mm or 500 microns because it can affect the overall fidelity of the metal. The heat emanating from the laser can also distort the integrity of the wall and cause it to lose shape and this may pose difficulty to later stages in the designing process. You can see Big Acrylic wall art to fully get the gist here.
Design Tip 4: Use the appropriate gap sizes
Laser melting machines come in different gap width in cases where there is no need for secondary processing, gaps of .5mm or larger are recommended. Smaller gaps can cause merging of metal walls as well decreased clarity and resolution.
Design Tip 5: Ensure large holes sizes for concentricity
The holes can easily merge together if they are smaller than 0.5mm handling this through drilling can accrue additional production cost. So it is advisable to keep larger holes sizes to allow for easy printing especially when the holes have a vertical orientation.
Design Tip 6: Be careful not to over project overhangs
Overhangs projecting .5mm or more can alter the overall production process because they can easily collapse. They normally project from the build direction and the major concern is the surface area of the down part. So ensure they are projected below 0.5mm.