Doesn’t it seem as though it was just several months ago that we were limited to 3D printing objects in just two materials–PLA or ABS? It certainly does to me! Just a couple years ago, FFF/FDM-based desktop 3D printing had appeared to hit a road block, while other technologies like stereolithography (SLA) seemed to be taking over. This was because material options were extremely limited, print speeds were not improving, and people were simply tired to fabricating boring plastic objects with little detail.
What a different a couple years can make. Today we see literally hundreds of different filament options available, which range from glow-in-the-dark materials to wood and metal composites. There are even filaments that change colors based on temperature. One of the companies that has been leading the way in this massive expansion of our material horizons within the FFF/FDM 3D printing space is 3DXTech. They have released several unique, innovative filaments over the course of the past year alone, and today they have unveiled yet another new filament — 3DXMax™ CFR-PETG Carbon Fiber Reinforced PETG.
“In keeping with our goal to provide the 3DP market with premium high-performance materials, we are launching a new grade of high-modulus carbon fiber reinforced 3D printing filament,” Mark Haskins, 3DXTech Materials Manager, tells 3DPrint.com. “Our new 3DXMax™ CFR-PETG Carbon Fiber Reinforced PETG filament is Made in the USA using a custom compound of Eastman PETG and High-Modulus Carbon Fiber.”
The filament, which is available in either 1.75mm or 2.85mm diameters, is now available for pre-order, via the 3DXTech website. It is available in 200g and 750g spools, and priced at $26.00 and $58.00, respectively. The expected release date for when orders will begin shipping is June 22, and shipping will be free for orders over $50, placed in the continental United States.
“We believe that carbon fiber stands as a transformative additive for 3D printing, Haskins tells us. “It adds exceptional stiffness to the compound while making it lighter [in] weight. Each base resin we choose brings something different to the table based on its inherent properties. With respect to PETG, it offers a more ductile base to start from, allowing for a higher loading of CF while retaining some ductility and impact. It adheres well to a variety of build platforms and has excellent layer bonding. The carbon fiber not only adds stiffness and dimensional stability, but it has an excellent aesthetic quality in the low-gloss sheen that it produces when printed.”
As for the recommended print settings for this new filament, they are as follows:
- Extruder: Ideally 230 to 250°C; up to 270°C
- Platform Temp: 70 to 90°C, up to 110°C
- Platform Prep: Clean glass w/Kapton Tape
- Nozzle: Currently recommend minimum 0.35mm orifice
This new material provides for superior chemical resistance when compared to more traditional ABS. It also provides for virtually no shrinkage when printed with, and moisture absorbing properties three times lower than seen with ABS. It is also worth noting that any carbon fiber filament is typically more abrasive to to a 3D printer’s nozzle than regular base plastics like PLA and ABS.
Haskins also tells us that 3DXTech will also be releasing two more, yet to be announced, carbon fiber filaments before the end of the year.
What do you think about this new material? Will you be purchasing any? What types of objects do you think would be best to print with it? Discuss in the 3DXMax CFR-PETG Carbon Fiber PETG forum thread on 3DPB.com.