3D Printing Service – FAQ’s
- What is the difference in materials?
- Can you print in any other materials not listed?
- How quickly can parts be made?
- What is the accuracy?
- What is the largest size of part?
- What file formats do you accept?
- What is the minimum wall thickness?
- What is the smallest hole size you can produce?
- Can I hollow a part to save cost or weight?
- Can I combine parts together to reduce cost?
- Can I get any additional discount?
- Can I specify orientation of the part?
- Are my files treated as confidential?
- Are the materials certified food safe?
- Does Graphite-SLS have anti-static properties?
- What clearance do you recommend for fitting parts?
- I am outside of the UK, can you remove the VAT?
- I have another question that is not listed here.
ANSWER – Graphite-SLS is a reinforced material with excellent performance to price ratio. The Carbon-SLS has the best stiffness to weight ratio of any 3D printed plastic. Both materials are slightly conductive. More information can be found at our other site here: Graphite-AM
ANSWER -No, as we are not using cheaper filament type machines, we cannot offer multi materials.
ANSWER – Typically 7-14 days for this quality 3D printing service
ANSWER – It will depend on the geometry, but we’d expect it to be in the region of +/-0.2mm
ANSWER – We can 3D print parts up to 300mm long in one piece. If your part is larger, we may cut it and ship in sections. We would aim to cut the part in a sensible location and add features to aid gluing for you where possible.
ANSWER – STL files and we’d recommend a resolution set to 0.01mm. (Set to Binary rather than ASCII if you have the option)
ANSWER – All geometry should be at least 0.8mm thick to build. Ideally though, we’d recommend 1.2mm to give stronger parts.
ANSWER – For short holes that are open both ends, around 2mm.
ANSWER – Hollow parts will save weight but normally do little to reduce cost. We will need plenty of access to be able to remove and clean the loose powder out of the cavity. At least 2 holes, (one at each end) that are at least 1/4 the size of the cavity.
ANSWER – Yes you can with this service, but in some cases it can increase the cost. We may choose to build and ship the parts contained in a sinterbox (cage). This may restrict our ability to clean powder from the parts compared with cleaning components individually.
ANSWER – The prices on 3D Print Direct are already heavily discounted and close to cost price. The only way we can keep part price so low is to be able to 100% pack our machines with parts and having a semi automated ordering process. By having longer lead times we can more efficiently pack many orders together. Shorter turnaround times and technical support are what we offer through Graphite Additive Manufacturing but costs are higher. There is a comparison chart on the homepage of 3dPrintdirect.co.uk.
ANSWER – If you pre-orientate the part as you would like it built, it would normally be kept in this orientation. However, we may change the orientation for nesting optimisation.
ANSWER – Yes, this is extremely important to us. We understand that the majority of parts we see are a new product design or prototype. Confidentiality for our customers is critical. We have industry standard security on site, and we will not release images or any data without customer approval.
ANSWER – No, the materials have not been certified and therefore we would recommend avoiding contact with food or drink.
ANSWER – The considered “safe” range for materials (between Conductive and Dissipative) is 100k Ohms – 35M Ohms. We have measured Graphite-SLS to be within this range at 280k – 485k Ohms. (Carbon-SLS is 20k – 100k).
ANSWER – We would recommend a 0.1mm clearance.
ANSWER – As this service is automated, we do not currently have this option to remove VAT based on location.
ANSWER – Please contact us and we will do what we can to help.