Archive for BRIT NERF Home of the British NERF Community
 


       BRIT NERF Forum Index -> Q&A and New members
Baldrick

How to smooth out 3d printed parts?

For those who clean up 3d printed parts to get a smooth finish how do you manage it?  I am asking as I have just ordered a cosmetic kit from taobao that has a number of details that would be fiddly to sand down (plus I don't want to spend days on sanding down the large parts that this kit contains).
Boff

Sanding is your best bet. If the item in question is ABS (unlikely since PLA is favoured) then you can use an acetone wash to polish it up. If, as is more likely, it's printed in PLA then you're in for some with sanding. You could try MEK solvent but it's nasty stuff and a touch hit and miss. Plus it will argue with some of the dyes in black and dark blue plastics causing discolouration if you're not careful. Smile
Baldrick

The colour of the items after clean up is irrelevant as I intend to (finally) do a decent paintjob on the blaster.  If sanding is the only option, then I have days of sanding ahead of me when it arrives (the kit is to turn a stryfe into looking like an assault rifle, ie, big pieces).
Boff

Have you thought about investing in a palm sander? I use one for larger printed parts and they're an absolute life saver. With the deltoid shape, you've got a lovely broad base for sanding large areas while the tip can be used for smaller areas. You can then switch to hand sanding or files for nooks, crannies and other hard to reach places. Smile
blindgeekuk

in my experience, PLA gets hot very quickly and starts melting rather than sanding, so wet sanding, though I don't do as much sanding as Franksie does, I personally quite like the print lines

Franksie used sanding and then a modeling putty / solvent to skim the surface to a near perfect finish on his rapidpistol

Use a variety of grit papers, and I use a sanding block which gives me different sized areas and the corner can be quite precise
OldNoob

The fastest way to smooth the parts is to use a body filler to skim over, then sand back. I use Squadron putty, a 1k Toluene based modelling putty. If you have larger pieces or big ridges, then car body filler works but can be tricky to work around detail.
I then follow up with a high build spray primer, which fills any pin holes etc.
I never use a powered sander, only wet n dry paper, start with 240 grit and work from there.
Franksie

Have had lots of nice comments about the smoothness of parts on my rapid pistol.  I used 240 grit wet sandpaper and a tonne of patience.  Will be using filler next followed by 400 grit wet and then a high build primer
Baldrick

Modelling putty?  I believe I have a couple of old pots of GW liquid greenstuff lying around somewhere (if they haven't fully dried out).  Thanks for the suggestion ON, I will be doing that when the kit arrives.
OldNoob

Its slightly different to liquid green stuff.   Example listing. Also cheaper, the only downside is it does shrink a bit if you go over about 1mm depth.
Baldrick

Thanks for the link, unfortunately, I don't think I can use that stuff due to the warning about harmful vapour.  I live with two cats, soon to be three, and so I am not allowed to use anything that has solvents (or any kind of harmful vapour).
Elime_rawne

Unfortunately there is no easy way to smooth it out...

What I will say is please ignore any tutorials or videos which mention epoxy or painting it on as a smoother, specifically XTC-3D (which is the op result for how to smooth 3d prints on google). It is really not suitable for our purposes and will triple the total amount of effort in the end.
OldNoob

Baldrick- Unless your cats eat it it won't hurt them. I have several animals and kids in the house, never had a problem.

       BRIT NERF Forum Index -> Q&A and New members
Page 1 of 1
Create your own free forum | Buy a domain to use with your forum