Home 3D Printing BASF Ahead AM Ultrafuse® Steel – Suggestions and Methods on How one can be Profitable

BASF Ahead AM Ultrafuse® Steel – Suggestions and Methods on How one can be Profitable

BASF Ahead AM Ultrafuse® Steel – Suggestions and Methods on How one can be Profitable


Discover these important steps which are required for getting one of the best steel 3D printed components potential.

Up to date on July 3, 2023


Visitor Contributor Ahead AM

When beginning a printing course of, the aim is to get the absolute best ultimate half. Nonetheless, with a purpose to obtain that, it’s important for sure tips to be revered. On this article, we are going to contact on the essential steps required to provide the absolute best printed steel half with BASF Ahead AM’s Ultrafuse® Steel materials. Let’s start with the guidelines and tips to efficiently print utilizing BASF Ahead AM Ultrafuse® Steel.

You can learn how to successfully print with real metal on your desktop 3D printer!

You’ll be able to discover ways to efficiently print with actual steel in your desktop 3D printer!

What are Ultrafuse® Steel Filaments?

Ultrafuse® Steel filaments are metal-polymer composite filaments particularly designed for Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) printing. The non-slip outer floor of Ultrafuse® filaments has been optimized for printing on each Bowden and direct drive FFF extruders. With excessive steel contents of round 90% by mass, mixed with even distribution of tailored steel powders inside the binder matrix, Ultrafuse® steel filaments present each reliable efficiency and assist to cut back the danger of printing defects, due to this fact, rising ultimate half success charges. 

When in comparison with different high-quality steel powder strategies like Selective Laser Melting (SLM), Direct Steel Laser Sintering (DMLS), Direct Steel Deposition (DMD), and Binder Jetting, Ultrafuse® filaments bind steel particles inside a strong polymer system at excessive density to cut back doubtlessly dangerous high-quality steel particle publicity.  And since there isn’t any must unpack the printed components out of uncooked powder inside the construct chamber, operators have minimal publicity to high-quality metallic particles.

BASF Ahead AM affords two steel filaments as a part of its portfolio: Ultrafuse® 316L and Ultrafuse® 17-4 PH

Which ends up in the query, when do you have to use what materials? Ultrafuse® 174PH is the cost-effective, all-rounder chrome steel, exhibits excessive mechanical load resistance and is appropriate for nearly all steel functions, solely overwhelmed by Ultrafuse® 316L on the subject of corrosion resistance. If you wish to verify which half is produced from 316L or 17-4 PH, merely use a magnet. If it sticks, it’s 17-4 PH. If it doesn’t, the half is made out of 316L.

BASF Ultrafuse 316L Metal Filament

BASF Ultrafuse 316L Steel Filament

Basic Necessary Setting and Pointers

Earlier than we delve into an important ideas and tips, make sure to evaluate the desk beneath. In it, you could find a short abstract of methods to efficiently work with steel filaments.

Prompt Printing Parameter

The number of printing parameters in the course of the slicing course of is important for half high quality and printing time. The advised parameters seen within the desk beneath function a place to begin for brand new customers seeking to start printing rapidly. As with all manufacturing course of, every half presents particular challenges and may profit from tuning and optimization with a purpose to obtain the best potential high quality.

  • Nozzle Measurement: 0.3 – 0.8mm
    • Varies relying on the extent of element required and print time
  • Line Width: ±10-20% Nozzle measurement
  • Retraction Distance: 1.5mm / 5.0mm
  • Retraction Velocity: 45 mm/s
  • Layer Top: 0.10 – 0.25 mm
    • Not more than 60% of the nozzle measurement is really useful
  • Outlines: 1-3
    • Too many outlines can lead to wall separation
  • Infill Density (Strong Half): 105% Traces
    • Rectilinear varieties have proven to provide larger densities
  • Infill Overlap: 20-35%
    • Overlap between the infill and the partitions should be ensured
  • Infill Kind (hole): >60% gyroid, grid, or triangle
    • Minimal infill above 60% for greatest outcomes, however decrease values potential with testing
  • Infill Line Route: [45, -45]
  • Nozzle Temperature: 235°C – 245°C
    • Calibrate to make sure precise temperature matches slicer temperature settings
  • Mattress Temperature: 90°C – 105°C
    • Calibrate to make sure precise temperature matches slicer temperature settings
  • Cooling: None
    • Half cooling typically will increase warpage however could be useful throughout bridging
  • Max. Print Velocity: 45 mm/s
    • Slower printing speeds produce denser, extra correct outcomes
  • Extrusion Fee: Max 8cm3/h
    • By nozzle measurement 0.4mm decrease charges really useful
  • Scaling: XY 120%, Z 124%
    • See Shrinkage and Oversizing Issue

Design Pointers

Growing and selecting the best design is essential for a high-quality and practical 3D printed object. It’s also essential to do not forget that the rules are sometimes suggestions, not limitations. And lots of tips are pushed by the wants of the D&S course of.

  • Half Measurement: The utmost inexperienced half footprint can not exceed X 100, Y 100, Z 100 mm with a purpose to match on the ceramic plates supporting the components all through debinding and sintering. Bigger components are achievable; nevertheless, they will endure from warpage whereas printing and infrequently require longer growth occasions. Probably the most profitable measurement for brand new customers is X 60, Y 60, Z 60 mm.
  • Unsupported Partitions: To reduce the possibility of collapse and distortion, unsupported wall top to width ratios beneath 6:1 have been confirmed to be the simplest. Though simply printed, ratios above 6:1 resulted in cracking and even half collapse.

Mono Extrusion for Steel Solely – 2.5D

  • Overhangs: >35°
    • Needs to be prevented by the half desigh
  • Assist Construction: Obligatory for profitable printing
  • Assist Materials: Printed from the identical materials
  • Assist Removing: Subtractive removing from the steel half by way of sawing, milling, drilling, and submitting
  • Shrinkage Plate: Probably requires CAD, separate print job, meeting finalized on the D&S service companion
  • Separatable Stay setter (assist construction plus shrinkage plate): Requires CAD, separate print job, error-prone finalization of the half meeting


The Huge Three

There are three huge matters that ought to all the time be thought-about when printing Ultrafuse® Steel Filaments: Twist and Deformation after Debinding and Sintering, Shrinkage Plate and Inexperienced Half Preparation.

Twist and Deformation after Debinding and Sintering

When utilizing Ultrafuse® Meta Filaments, an unusual characteristic should be used within the slicer. The printing historical past of the person layers leaves an invisible inner pressure within the inexperienced half. That is very true for contour-following strains as they introduce a spring-like pressure that follows the thermal historical past of the extruded line. Components with skinny options or many contour strains endure probably the most from deformation in the course of the sintering course of (Determine 2). The trick is to print the contours with alternating instructions. This compensates the for the strain, and the components usually are not deformed after sintering.

Example of parts before and after the debinding and sintering process.

Figures 1&2: Instance of components earlier than and after the debinding and sintering course of.

Shrinkage Plate as a Stay Setter

The second essential tip is to pay attention to is the Shrinkage Plate. Through the sintering course of, the steel particles fuse collectively and as much as 20% shrinkage happens. Throughout shrinkage, the contact space of the half is affected by friction as a counterforce. The coefficient of friction is dependent upon the mass distribution of the half and the design ratios of the half, which seem stretched or deformed (Determine 4). To compensate for the static friction results, a separate plate fabricated from the identical materials, often called a shrinkage plate (Determine 5), is used to surround your entire contour space of the underside of the half. The specified half sees solely the shrinkage of the plate and no further static friction. The element leaves the sintering course of freed from distortion and with larger accuracy (Determine 6). For a debinding and sintering service companion, the shrinkage plate is coated with a sinter-inactive materials to forestall diffusion and bonding of the shrinkage plate with the specified steel half.

Figures 3&4: A look at parts after each of the debinding and sintering process.

Figures 3&4: A have a look at components after every of the debinding and sintering course of.

Using a shrinkage plate during the D&S process helps minimize part distortion.

Figures 5&6: Utilizing a shrinkage plate in the course of the D&S course of helps decrease half distortion.

Inexperienced Half Preparation

Through the debinding course of, the polymer and thermoplastic matrix is eliminated leaving solely stainless-steel powder with a small quantity of plastic to carry the half’s form. Tiny gaps between the half and the assist floor of the furnace can exert important shear forces on the half, resulting in cracking and collapse. To efficiently survive processing, all half surfaces should be completely planar and flat. A glass print mattress and using Magioo ProMetal are the primary steps in the best course. Every half needs to be checked for planarity earlier than debinding and sintering and, if mandatory, flattened utilizing sandpaper or different subtractive strategies.

Figure 7: Part after release from the build plate

Determine 7: Half after launch from the construct plate

Figure 8: Crack after sintering process

Determine 8: Crack after sintering course of

Figure 9: Little Gap between component and underlaying surface

Determine 9: Little Hole between element and underlaying floor

We hope that by using the following tips and tips, all of your steel components shall be printed as anticipated. For extra info and extra ideas and tips, make sure to try BASF Ahead AM’s Steel Consumer Guideline. Till then, blissful printing!



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