Loading

Making your PLA prints FLEXIBLE V2 (and ABS smoothing!)

by nickdisney, published

Making your PLA prints FLEXIBLE V2 (and ABS smoothing!) by nickdisney Jun 4, 2013

Description

Okay, so yesterday I uploaded a video of a few parts I have managed to make into flexible pieces. Today I am giving you the how to. (I waited to make sure the parts remained flexible and to see if I could come up with a suitable way to restore the color to some of the treated parts.)

(Yesterdays video) youtube.com/watch?v=OHhHHAQd0KI
(How to) youtu.be/lP-S3PkvBbk
(Detailed How To) youtu.be/GP36vJh3-B0

Recent Comments

view all

I did print 2 bumpers at the same time, treated one with the xylene vapour bath, and left the other untreated - so it is my control. The treated bumper is certainly not as rubbery as it was a week ago, but it is still flexible/bendable compared to the untreated one. I can happily twist it into a figure 8, but the control made a cracking sound when I tried just now (only got half way through the figure 8 twist). Will let you know in another week whether it is getting harder.

i had deducted that from other experiments and reading the MSDS of all the common chemicals that had the same effect. now if you would do me the favor, let me know if it remains flexible over time. the things i had treated also become rubbery, but they go back to a normal hardness after a few days, a week the longest. keep the treated bumper out in air and report back to me in a week or so. my guess is that it will harden again.

I printed a cell phone bumper (http://www.thingiverse.com/thi... in PLA and sat it in an un-heated Xylene vapour bath over night. It worked a treat making the bumper very rubbery, so xylene is the way to go. Also there was no noticeable discolouring when in exposed to vapours, but I did get some whitening when submerging in the xylene. Good work.

More from 3D Printing

view more

Makes

Liked By

view all

Tags

Give a Shout Out

If you print this Thing and display it in public proudly give attribution by printing and displaying this tag. Print Thing Tag

Instructions

Just as an update, I found some ABS parts in my scraps that came with my printer, and after about two seconds immersed in this liquid, the surface became gummy and smooth, and then hardened after about fifteen minutes. so for those of you with heated beds printing with ABS, this is definitely something to experiment with.

Comments

You must be logged in to post a comment.

rlittin on Nov 19, 2013 said:

I printed a cell phone bumper (http://www.thingiverse.com/thi... in PLA and sat it in an un-heated Xylene vapour bath over night. It worked a treat making the bumper very rubbery, so xylene is the way to go. Also there was no noticeable discolouring when in exposed to vapours, but I did get some whitening when submerging in the xylene. Good work.

Anonymous on Nov 19, 2013 said:

i had deducted that from other experiments and reading the MSDS of all the common chemicals that had the same effect. now if you would do me the favor, let me know if it remains flexible over time. the things i had treated also become rubbery, but they go back to a normal hardness after a few days, a week the longest. keep the treated bumper out in air and report back to me in a week or so. my guess is that it will harden again.

tilden on Aug 7, 2013 said:

So how do you get rid of the smell ?

Anonymous on Sep 18, 2013 said:

it fades. it doesn’t linger like gasoline.

M_G on Jul 22, 2013 said:

I could see the partial treatment of parts by this process being very useful e.g. making flexible "living hinges" on more stiff and solid items. Good work!

Framingr on Jul 6, 2013 said:

So this works very well. But the stuff itself is not something you want to be handling nor breathing. Only do this in an open area and try keep skin exposure to a minimum. Benzene is a well know carcinogen.

Alpha_Pi_Rho on Jul 15, 2013 said:

Not really benzene but ethylbenzene if you check the link. Different chemical but still needs to be handled properly for sure. Freaked me out too when I read the post about benzene in the ingredients.

BloodBlight on Jun 26, 2013 said:

Has anyone tried treating a small portion of a spool and then printing with it?

decodedlabs on Jul 3, 2013 said:

He mentioned its extremely flammable I wouldn't risk putting it in the machine like that.

Tesseract on Jun 18, 2013 said:

Is there any loss of detail? Usually in very detailed prints most immersion bath techniques result in significant loss of detail.

Anonymous on Jun 18, 2013 said:

if you are using this on ABS, then yes, there would be, but on PLA, there is no loss at all.

inkhed1 on Jun 17, 2013 said:

Love this thank you very much for your work!

MovieGuy021083 on Jun 15, 2013 said:

nice job

Gyrobot on Jun 8, 2013 said:

For any UK based Thingiversers out there, Toolstation stock a carburettor cleaner. I went out and bought some today, took it home to try immediately and it works. Follow the instructions in nickdisney's latest video and within 5-10mins, you will have a flexible part.

http://www.toolstation.com/sho...

Superb, many thanks.

blah_59 on Jun 21, 2013 said:

Did you immerse in the liquid or use vapor?

RARA on Jun 20, 2013 said:

Thanks for this info, much appreciated!

Anonymous on Jun 9, 2013 said:

if atone can track down the MSDS on this brand, I would like to compare it to Berkible and Supertech varieties for similar ingredients. maybe we can pinpoint the one that works and find it raw.

funkytaco on Jun 6, 2013 said:

Found you via the Adafruit blog, FYI

Anonymous on Jun 6, 2013 said:

NM, I found it. awesome! thanks!

Anonymous on Jun 6, 2013 said:

really? whats the link?

BlackTalon on Jun 5, 2013 said:

Absolutely awesome. I love printing in PLA because its easier to stick to the bed but the prints are so brittle. This solves a major problem for me. Thank You

TheThinker on Jun 4, 2013 said:

Very cool! Have you determined if there are any other changes to the PLA resulting from this process? Is it more flammable than regular PLA once the cleaner dries? Does it damage any other plastic it contacts (such as an iPhone)?

Anonymous on Jun 4, 2013 said:

no, I haven’t experimented with burning PLA at all, but once the chemicals dry, they are no longer flammable. tif you leave the print submersed for too long, the chemical will break down the plastic to something crumbly and unusable, so there is a golden time frame with which to keep your parts submersed. as far as damaging plastics, I have been using a case printed and processed with my s3 for about a week now and have had no negative results.

cjbissonnette on Jun 4, 2013 said:

Love this, thanks for the great work.

gchoinka on Jun 4, 2013 said:

Thanks for posting it, for the none-us maker please give us pictures of the full label, i can not fly to us to buy carburetor cleaner from supertech, we need to know which substance it is
are other brands of carburetor cleaner also working?

how much does it cost?
does the pla stays flexible over an longer time?

Anonymous on Jun 4, 2013 said:

no worries, you can use any brand. just go down to your local pep boys, auto zone, or even your local mechanic and ask him to buy a can. its a staple in every shop. they are all the same, just branded differently. most of it is made by a company called berkible I think.

jfr on Jun 4, 2013 said:

I have just found technicals specifications here :

http://www.setonresourcecenter...

It's approximatively 90% of Kerosene
Try and enjoy

JFR

scvette on Jun 4, 2013 said:

Vapor bath? like acetone Vapor bath or liquid bath dipped? Time to treat the bong and get to the method....

thantik on Jun 4, 2013 said:

Just a heads up, your "how-to" video wasn't very how-to. I think you may have gotten a bit distracted. =P

Anonymous on Jun 4, 2013 said:

ha, very true. I will upload the process I use in a little bit. just gonna finish this episode of next generation...

cake on Jun 4, 2013 said:

Incredible!! I have to try this myself :)

Anonymous on Jun 4, 2013 said:

let me know how your stuff comes out. I’m wondering if there is a difference between sources (brands) or PLA.

Top