Fused Deposition Modeling Advantages and Disadvantages
Fused Deposition Modeling, or FDM, has become an efficient way of creating 3D prototypes, but there are even more ways that FDM can help your company. For businesses that need medical devices, specialized manufacturing tools, automotive parts, or more- FDM is an excellent choice for you. For those unfamiliar with 3D printing, Fused Deposition Modeling is the most common type of 3D printing. In this additive process, materials are added layer by layer to create a final component. Each layer is created using a melted filament, which is carefully placed along the component’s structure to create a finished product. FDM is popular because, compared to other industrial grade 3D printers, it is cheap, fast, and easy to use. This process can help companies save time and money while improving the quality of their products. FDM in Green Bay WI
One of the greatest advantages of FDM is speed when compared to traditional manufacturing methods. Depending on the size of your product, it could take between a couple minutes or hours to create a fully realized product or component. For example, if you were to print a small part of a Lego set, it would take just a few minutes. On the other hand, if you were trying to print something like an engine block for your car, this process could take hours or even days depending on its size and complexity. This short lead time, compared to other production processes, can dramatically reduce lead times that come with prototyping and developing your product.
FDM printers can print larger objects than most other types of 3D printers, and because the design is easily scalable it means FDM has a low cost-to-size ratio. Depending on the material you use for your printing, you can also see a decrease in the cost of your finished product. The more complex the design, however, the more material you will need to print it—so keep that in mind when designing your model. Contact AdvancedTek to learn more about the costs of FDM in Green Bay WI.
Variety of Material
For other types of production, you may not be able to use certain materials because you’d lose out on the amount of detail you need for the component you’re creating. However, with 3D printing you can use a variety of material to create your design. This gives you the ability to choose exactly what type of photopolymer you want for your product, depending on its intended use and durability. Many of these materials are quite budget-friendly, meaning you won’t have to break the bank just because you are using 3D printing services. With all of these advantages in mind, you might be wondering exactly what kind of disadvantages there are with 3D printing, below we’ll outline some of the most common disadvantages of using 3D printing.
Unfortunately, the easy scalability of your designs comes with a drawback- and that is lower resolution. Some finer details can be lost during the 3D printing process, which can make it difficult to get the kind of quality you are looking for. In addition, there are certain materials that simply do not have the same level of resolution as others. However, there are solutions. The lower resolution of FDM style 3D printing, and the rougher surface of a printed material, can be easily solved by using a finishing process after printing. This can include sanding or polishing your piece to get the smooth finish you need. At AdvancedTek, we understand that many of those who use 3D printing will also be interested in a finishing process. That’s why we recommend DyeMansion post-processing finishing systems.
Another disadvantage of FDM style 3D printing is weaker structure. Because FDM printers place the desired material, or filament, layer by layer, structural issues may develop as a result. Prints are usually anisotropic, and can have weak points where one layer meets another. For example, FDM parts can break when put under heavy compressive loads. Alternating between layers printed on the X- and Y-axes strengthens FDM parts, but most applications benefit more from reduced weight than they do added strength. AdvancedTek can help with all your FDM in Green Bay WI printers.
All in all, there are many factors to consider when it comes to using FDM 3D printing methods for your application. If you need a part that can withstand heavy loads and stress, then FDM may not be the best choice for your application. However, there are many fields- such as the medical or automotive industries- where FDM is an excellent choice. The only way to know if your application benefits from FDM 3D printing is to reach out to a professional 3D printing service near me. If you are interested in learning more about FDM in Green Bay WI, reach out to AdvancedTek today!
If you’re interested in working with a company that has 30 years’ experience in the 3D printing industry, AdvancedTek is the upper Midwest’s partner for 3D printing and post-processing solutions. Our industrial 3D printers allow professionals to create Concept Models, Functional Prototypes, Manufacturing Tooling, and End-User Parts quickly and affordably. We can even help you speed along your prototyping process with our 3D printing service. You can find out more about us by checking out our website here.