How to make 3d prints waterproof

How to make 3d prints waterproof?

You may be wondering about how to make 3d prints waterproof.  But, before that, we need to understand the difference between waterproofing and making it watertight. waterproof 3d prints represent that the water won’t affect it. On the other hand, watertight means that neither water can enter through the 3d print, nor pass through.

For instance, if you are making home decor, there is no need to get it watertight. If the material is waterproof, it’s fine. However, if you are making a 3D print water bottle, the in needs to be watertight.

Because the bottle will always hold a sufficient amount of water inside.

In this small piece of article, we will discuss how to make 3d prints waterproof so that their life becomes durable.

how to make 3d printer waterproof

The following information will be useful to make the 3d prints waterproof.

The material | use the best filament for water

There are various printing materials you might be using. For example, if you are using an FDM 3d printer, there would be printing materials like PLA, ABS & PETG.

Wait a minute!

What is the difference between those?

Polylactic Acid or PLA isn’t really a recognized waterproofed filament but, there’s no significant evidence that it has severe exposure to water. However, the durability of PLA becomes poorer if it contradicts hot water.

ABS or acrylonitrile butadiene styrene filament is an ideal 3d printing material to make the 3d prints waterproof. In extremely cold weather, ABS may break but, the waterproofing capacity will always be there in position.

PETG is the most durable 3d printing filament in extremely high temperatures and cold water. It may be a bit expensive but as a waterproofing material, PETG does great.

Here’s a short comparison of PLA and PETG

PLA vs PETG

 

These are the best way to waterproof 3d prints

There are some best practices for making the 3d prints waterproof. We will discuss the slicer settings and some other important aspects here.

Set the slicer properly

Slicer settings are one of the critical tasks when you are going to make the 3d prints waterproof. The slicer setting defines how hard and sharp are you going to make the 3d print.

You need to understand that simple models are easier to make waterproof. On the other side, complex 3d print models are difficult to make waterproof.

So, where is the big part?

You need to work really hard with the design first.

Let’s have a look at this 3d print. We made it fine, but with fewer details to make it waterproof.

3D print quality on Creality Ender 3 V2

Over extrusion makes waterproof

If you do extrusion quickly, there will be small unfilled bubbles. On the other hand, over extrusion will make the 3d print waterproof by slowly filling the plastics on shape.

Try using the extrusion multiplier and the flow rate enhancer for such waterproofing advantages.

Take help of a nozzle

A wide nozzle gives you more waterproofing in a 3d printer. Because a wide nozzle will always deliver a thicker extrusion.

Usually, the side of the 3d print is more waterproof when its side wall is thick and free from any bubbles.

Here’s a variety of nozzle and you need to select the best one as per your design.

3 d printer nozzle comparison

Infill

If you fill more, the more your 3d print will become solid.

A higher infill not only creates durability but also makes the 3d print waterproof.

Follow these 3d print post-processing

Apart from all the 3d print material and settings, there is some important post-processing technique that can make the 3d print waterproof.

You can take the help of epoxy or wax solution. Those are chemical solutions usually brushed outside the 3d prints. Such a shiny outer layer helps the 3d prin object apart from any outside contraction.

Epoxy make 3d prints waterproof

Or, you can try the ACETONE smoothing of your 3d prints to make them waterproof. In this process, the ABS vapor dissolves each layer and makes a 3d print waterproof.

Here’s an example of acetone 3d print smoothing

how to make a 3d print waterproof by acetone smoothing

So that’s all!

Waterproofing a 3d print object is not so difficult. You need to understand what makes it waterproof.

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