Print incredible metal pieces right on your desktop!
Colorfabb's Steelfill filament is a masterpiece of material engineering, combining their incredible PLA/PHA filament with a high density of fine steel power, you can now print effectively metal parts right on your standard desktop printer.
With sanding and buffing, a finished 3D print can be impossible to tell from a cast metal piece. Sanding and polishing your parts will make the steel particles shine. Start sanding with grit 120-180 and make sure all the printed lines vanish. You’ll notice that because Steelfill is easy to sand down, careful you won’t loose too much detail. Then start working your way up by following with grit 240-320 and finishing off with grit 600 - or higher. Finally we suggest using a clean soft cloth and some polish to really get all of the shine out of the steel particles.
Suggested 3D Printing Settings:
Printing Speed: 40 - 70 mm/s
Heated Bed: 40-60C
Material Density: 3,13g/cm3
Note that Steelfill is incredibly abrasive and will accelerate the wear of brass extruder nozzles. Hardened steel or stainless steel nozzles are recommended to use with this filament.
PLA/PHA compound performs well on both heated and non-heated build platforms. For those users printing on a cold build platform we advise applying masking tape to the build area. The rough surface of the tape will provide enough adhesion for the first layer to stick and print almost without any warping.
Users using heated build platforms have quite a few options these days. The usual suspects are glass and aluminum build plates. For directly printing on glass or aluminum we advice user to apply glue-stick. A very thin layer will be sufficient to keep your print nicely in place. Another method is dissolving wood glue in water, you the consistency of the substance can be quite thin, a bit like milk. By applying just a few drops and smearing this out before you start heating the built plate will create a very thing layer which holds the Steelfill down very well. If applying this method, be careful that you don’t get your electronics wet.
Another method that works well with colorFabb Steelfill is polyimide tape, or Kapton tape. This tape is available as a very narrow strip or very wide strips which allow you to cover the build plate in one go. When the tape is applied correctly it can last for months.