fdm 3d printing - guidelines
1. Create valid solid objects. In software like Rhinoceros, this means that all surface edges are joined to one and only one other surface edge. Solid modeling packages such as Solidworks work only with solids, so most created shapes will be valid.
2. Meshes must be closed and watertight. If you have trouble finding problem areas, software like MiniMagics can help you find bad edges.
3. Export to Stereolithography (.STL) format. Most CAD packages will have .STL Export options that affect the quality of the object. Tighter parameters can produce better files, especially with complex surfaces. Files will range in size from a few hundred kilobytes for simple geometry up to 5MB for extremely complex parts. File sizes larger than 5MB are generally unnecessary and will slow down the quoting and building process. Always export .STL files as binary, as it saves on time and space.
4. Consider maximum size. The maximum size for single part 3d printing at KMCA is 10”x10”x12”. We can split larger models into smaller parts and assemble them.
5. Consider small features. Very thin features can sometimes be very brittle, especially columns and walls that are less than .040” in diameter. Thin features tend to break easily and are more difficult to print accurately.
** If a feature is too small to print at all, by default it will be ignored. If you would like us to make small features large enough to print, make a note on your order. Be aware that this will affect scale accuracy.