Back to MEAM.Design - 3D Printing
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Our main 3D printing laboratory is the MEAM Additive Manufacturing Laboratory, or AddLab. The AddLab will be staffed Monday-Friday 9am-5pm over the summer. (Please note that the Makerbots for use by engineering students are separately located in the RPL.)
The Rapid Prototyping Laboratory is our open access laboratory for both MakerBot 3D printing and laser cutting. Please note that these machines are for engineering students only.
We are currently running four varieties of additive-layer manufacturing machines in our labs:
ProJet 6000 Stereolithography Printer - Parts are built by using a laser to trace part layers in a photoreactive polymer vat, causing them to harden into 0.002" or 0.004" thick layers. The maximum build volume is 10" x 10" x 10", and printing costs $20 per cubic inch of model material.
Dimension Elite Fused-Deposition Printer - Parts are generated by extruding a thin filament of ABS plastic (material datasheet) to create successive layers either 0.007" or 0.010" thick. The maximum build volume is 8" x 8" x 12", and printing costs $12 per cubic inch of both model and support material.
Objet30 Photopolymer Printer- Parts are created from a photopolymer (material datasheet - see VeroBlack) in layers only 28 microns (0.0011") thick. The maximum build volume is 11.5" x 7.5" x 5.75", and printing costs $0.62 per gram (or $12 per cubic inch) of model support material. Material and/or changes incur an additional $30 charge -- users will be notified if this is necessary.
(6) MakerBot Replicator 2 Printers (the MakerFleet) - Parts are built up layer-by-layer by extruding a thin filament of PLA plastic. The maximum build volume is 11.2" x 6.0" x 6.1", although it is strongly suggested that parts should not take up the entire build volume to help ensure quality.
3D Printing Process Comparison
|3D Printers||Dimension Elite||Objet30||Projet 6000HD|
|Material||PLA||ABS||VeroBlack or VeroWhite (ABS-like)||VisiJetŪ SL Clear (Polycarbonate-like) & VisiJetŪ SL Flex (Polypropylene-like)|
|Build Volume||11.2" x 6.0" x 6.1"||8.0" x 8.0" x 12"||11.5" x 7.5" x 5.75"||10" x 10" x 10"|
High Accuracy: 100µ (0.0039 in)
Medium: 270µ (0.0106in)
Low Accuracy: 340µ (0.0133 in)
|.007 or .010 in.||28µ (.0011 in.)||
UHD - 0.100 mm (.004 in.)
XHD - 0.050 mm (.002 in.)
|Support Material||No separate support material. Model material used as support must be manually removed.||Separate support material that is dissolved away in post-process NaOH solution bat.||Separate support material that is physically removed by water jet.||Separate support material that is physically removed by operators during post-processing.|
|Cost (per in³ of model and support material)||Free 2||$12 per in³||$0.62 per gram, or $12 per in³||$20 per in³|
|Typical Cost per in³ of model material (using support volume averages)l||Free 2||$18||$20||$22|
Replicator 2: Engineering Students
5th Generation: RPL Staff
|3D Print Staff||3D Print Staff||3D Print Staff|
1 It is strongly suggested that parts should not take up the entire build volume to help ensure quality
2 All use must be solely for academics or research. NO PERSONAL PROJECTS!
For more information, please see our more detailed Comparison Chart
How to Print
3D Printing Media
We have a collection of 3D printing pictures and videos that can be found here.
3D Printing Resources