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    Fiber Reinforced 3D Printing: What You Need to Know

    Markforged on Sep 8, 2020 11:00:00 AM

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    As we covered in Physics of 3D Printing, imagine the fiber is like raw spaghetti. If you try to bend it, it snaps. If you try to compress it lengthwise by trying to push the two endpoints closer together, it also snaps. However, if you load it in tension by pulling on it, it can hold a decent load. Like the spaghetti, continuous fibers are strongest when loaded in tension. The key is understanding where the fibers are loaded in tension, and how a given load can distribute amongst the local fibers.

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    CNC vs. 3D Printing: What's the Best Way to Make Your Part

    Markforged on Jul 28, 2020 12:00:00 PM

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    The development of stronger 3D printing materials has encouraged manufacturers across industries to explore CNC vs 3D printing, and find ways to 3D print functional parts that were previously CNC machined. The 3D printing process can save manufacturers considerable time and money, while still generating the quality necessary for industrial-level production.

    Manufacturers that make the switch can leverage 3D printing software to prototype and produce parts in a single day, for a fraction of the cost of traditional CNC machining. However, there are still several key areas where CNC may still be the right choice.

    From physical to financial, let’s walk through some of key areas to evaluate before deciding between CNC vs 3D printing.

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    Planning and 3D Printing a Composite Part

    Markforged on Jul 14, 2020 11:00:00 AM

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    Just as with any manufacturing process, there are optimized and non-optimized ways to design parts for 3D printing. In this case, DFM (Design For Manufacturing) becomes DFAM — Design For Additive Manufacturing — and while your printer won’t chastise you like your machinists will for failing to consider fabrication methods in your design, the part integrity will suffer. This article covers the general outline for printing a composite part on Markforged printers: design, reinforce, print. You might be surprised by how straightforward composite printing is!

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    3D Printing Composites with Markforged

    Markforged on Jun 9, 2020 11:00:00 AM

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    Fiber appears in 3D printed parts in two different formats, and it’s important to understand the distinction.

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    Markforged in the Classroom: Using 3D Printing in Education

    Markforged on May 14, 2020 11:00:00 AM

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    In my classroom I have been using 3D printing for just about 10 years. My district first invested in a 3D printers for our schools knowing that the impact on student learning would be instrumental in their success through college and in their futures. Today, we see a booming industry in additive manufacturing and engineers now are only beginning to see all of the potential applications for these technologies.

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    Introduction to 3D Printing: What Are Composites?

    Markforged on May 12, 2020 11:00:00 AM

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    How do you decide what material is best for a manufactured part? This simple question has a complicated answer. An engineer must weigh criteria across several domains, including intended function, loading scenarios, work environment, production quantity, available manufacturing processes, and more. 3D printing is appropriate for some production applications, and less so for others. Here, we explore a new process for fabricating end-use parts: 3D printing composite materials.

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    How Your 3D Printing Settings Impact Part Strength

    Markforged on Apr 14, 2020 11:00:00 AM

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    Part Orientation

    Whether plastic or composite, FFF or CFF, 3D printed parts are strongest in planes parallel to the print bed — so the print orientation can literally make or break a part. Deposition-based 3D printers build parts in layers of plastic laid down on top of one another. Almost always, the molecular bonds forming the material extrusion itself are stronger than the adhesive bonds of one extrusion of plastic laid on another. Think of the layers like cracks or wood grain - they are slices of material stacked together, so it’s easy to pull those slices apart vertically, or push them past each other in shear.

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    3D Printing Carbon Fiber and Other Composites

    Markforged on Mar 10, 2020 11:00:00 AM

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    What Composites Do for 3D Printing

    Composite fibers boost specific properties of traditional 3D printed parts - usually strength, stiffness, heat resistance, and durability. This gives them a strength advantage over more traditional thermoplastics used in 3D printing like ABS or PLA, so the applications of 3d printing can expand with these additional materials and the properties they bring to the table.

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    The Physics Behind 3D Printing

    Markforged on Feb 11, 2020 11:00:00 AM

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    Before getting to materials and settings that determine the strength of a 3D printed part, it is important to understand the physics and theory driving what aspects of a 3D printed part are important to its strength. In this article, we cover 3 concepts that lay the groundwork for strong 3D printed parts.

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    How Does the 3D Printing Process Work?

    Markforged on Jan 7, 2020 11:00:00 AM

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    At a high level, the 3D printing process includes slicing a CAD file into discrete layers and then building that part layer by layer. In the FFF process, this happens by precisely extruding 3D printing materials in discrete tool paths that trace the outside of a layer and its celled infill.

    The specifics of the format of the printer—its construction, what it’s made of, and the quality of its components— factor in to the quality and scale of the parts it can produce.

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