Enabling innovation with industrial-grade 3D printing materials
One of the most critical aspects of a successful 3D printing is selecting the right material choice for the product. Only through careful consideration and evaluation of the 3D printing materials that you will get the best result for the final product that you will print with a 3D printer. Ultimaker has a wide range of 3D printer filament choices and they also produce one of the best and most versatile 3D printing machines currently on the market ( including Singapore ). But with all this variety, one can become easily confused with an avalanche of information as each filament has its own qualities, purposes and printing methods.
In this article, we’ll explore:
- 3D Printing Materials Types
- Comparison Chart
- Properties and Applications of Ultimaker 3D Printer Filament
Each print has its own purpose, be it strength, flexibility, chemical resistance, protection against electrostatic discharge, flame retardant qualities, aesthetics or processing speed to name just a few. The value gained by taking the time to evaluate and consider your filament material choice is very important.
3D Printing Materials Types
What 3D printer filament should I use? If you use one of these 3D printing filament discussed below you’ll be able to apply specific print profiles refined by Ultimaker. With the right material for the task and print profile in hand you will be ready to print in no time! Simply by choosing a few parameters in Ultimaker Cura (the open-source 3D printer slicing software for Ultimaker) all the other more complex values will be automatically configured to produce the highest quality results for your 3D printing.
Listed below are all the Ultimaker 3D printing materials available:
- Ultimaker PLA
- Ultimaker Tough PLA
- Ultimaker ABS
- Ultimaker Nylon
- Ultimaker CPE
- Ultimaker CPE+
- Ultimaker PC
- Ultimaker TPU 95A
- Ultimaker Polypropylene ( PP)
- Ultimaker PVA
- Ultimaker Breakaway
In addition, there is also a number of third party 3D printer filament choices in the Ultimaker Marketplace with preloaded 3D print profiles. Worth noting that Ultimaker’s open filament system lets you print with any 2.85 mm 3D printer filament and the print profiles can be configured to maximise your print success rates.
Below is a table comparing some of the most crucial filament properties in relation to 3D printing applications for each of the specific Ultimaker 2.85mm 3D printing materials. All data is taken from 3D printed samples and the technical data sheets.
All these 3D printer filament materials are available in the Ultimaker Supplies shop and you can buy it online with delivery in Singapore. How much does a 3D printer filament cost? There is a wide range of prices depending on the materials. Do visit our online shop to find out more!
Properties and Applications of Ultimaker 3D Printer Filament
Ultimaker PLA ( polylactic acid )
PLA is highly versatile, easy to print, and available in 11 colors. It prints reliably with high dimensional accuracy and a quality surface finish. This makes it an ideal material for a range of applications. From detailed prototypes to simple manufacturing jigs and gauges. If you require something that prints quickly and consistently, start with a filament like PLA. For larger prints, PLA is the most reliable and serve a wide range of applications, such as functional prototypes and concept models .
Ultimaker ABS (acrylonitrile butadiene styrene)
ABS plastic is formulated to minimize warping and ensure consistent interlayer adhesion. ABS material is a great choice for creating functional prototypes and complex end-use parts.
Ultimaker CPE (co-polyester)
CPE material is an ideal choice for 3D printing functional prototypes and mechanical parts. This filament is formulated for chemical resistance, toughness, and reliable dimensional stability.
Ultimaker Nylon ( polyamide )
Nylon features reduced humidity absorption and a longer shelf life compared to other nylon filaments. Able to withstand significant mechanical stress, nylon material is a great choice for 3D printing tools, functional prototypes, and end-use parts. What is the best type of filament for 3D printing? Nylon, a synthetic polymers used in many industrial applications, is the champion of the professional 3D printing world. Compared to most other types of 3D printer filament, it ranks as the top contender when considering strength, flexibility, and durability.
Ultimaker TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane)
TPU 95A is a flexible material, making it ideal for applications that demand chemical resistance and the qualities of rubber and plastic. For a seamless 3D printing experience, Ultimaker TPU 95A is made easier and faster to print than other TPU filaments on the market.
Ultimaker PC (polycarbonate)
What is the strongest filament for 3D printing? Polycarbonate or PC filament material is considered the strongest filament, according to many reviewers and manufacturers. Polycarbonate’s tensile strength makes it the ideal choice for high-strength, functional components. PC filament print parts that are tough, strong, and retain dimensional stability when subjected to temperatures as high as 110 ºC. This polycarbonate 3D printing material properties make it perfect for printing molds, tools, functional prototypes, and parts for short-run manufacturing.
Ultimaker PP (polypropylene)
PP is a durable, chemical resistant material. It has exceptional fatigue resistance, high levels of toughness, and a low-friction co-efficient. From electrical components to living hinges, PP is the go-to material for prototyping and end-use parts.
Ultimaker Tough PLA
Tough PLA is a technical PLA (polylactic acid) material with a toughness similar to ABS. It is ideal for printing functional prototypes and tooling at larger sizes – without fear of delamination or warping. This Tough PLA offers the same safe and easy use as regular PLA.
CPE+ material is chemical resistant with high dimensional stability, with the added advantages of increased temperature resistance and higher impact strength compared to regular CPE.
Ultimaker PVA (polyvinyl alcohol)
PVA is a leading water-soluble support material for multi-extrusion 3D printing. It offers you freedom and convenience: to design complex model geometries that require supports, which dissolve away in tap water.
Breakaway support is easy and quick to remove. It leaves behind a smoother quality finish than other support materials, with no further post-processing needed.
Need Help On 3D Printer Filament in Singapore ?
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Ultimaker Material Alliance
Can 3D printers use any filament? Common filament types like ABS and PLA are available in the Ultimaker filament portfolio. Most 3D printers are designed to be able to use these filaments. Ultimaker’s first-party material portfolio provides a rigorously tested range of materials. In addition, Ultimaker has also combined their material expertise with over 80 leading brands to create the Ultimaker Material Alliance. This is an open platform program by Ultimaker that aligns sophisticated filament portfolios with Ultimaker’s easy-to-use 3D printing system. With this, users can further expand their range of materials including HIPS, PETG, ASA, metal filled and wood filled, just to name a few.
Simply choose the filament your application needs, download its print settings from Ultimaker Cura Marketplace, and start printing – knowing that those settings have already been thoroughly tested on Ultimaker machines. The ability to choose almost any 3D printing filament means your application opportunities become endless with Ultimaker. Note that this open platform only supports 2.85mm filament and not 1.75mm filament and also does not support resins.
One of the most exciting and latest material that is now available in Ultimaker Alliance program is metal filament. How much does metal filaments for 3D printers cost? Metal filaments is expected to be much cheaper and lower in price per kg compared to the metal powder used in 3D printers. Metal powder currently cost about 2 to 3 times higher than the metal filament used in FDM 3D printers.
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