Introduction to Fused Filament Fabrication

Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) or Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) technology is certainly the most widely known technology. As one of the cheapest technologies, it has become widely used by individuals and SMEs.

The concept is very simple because it is the extrusion of a heated thermoplastic polymer wire through a nozzle (or print head). The head follows the path defined by the 3D file to reproduce the part layer by layer.

At Axis, we use professional FDM printers whose print quality and repeatability allow us to meet all our customers’ needs.

The printing dimensions of our largest machine allow us to produce parts up to 900 x 600 x 900mm

3D printer stratum for thread removal

The benefits of this 3D printing technology

In addition to its attractive price, the technology by wire deposition, allows a great flexibility in the materials used. From the simplest biosourced plastic such as PLA, to more technical materials such as ABS, nylon, ASA, polycarbonate or Ultem, through TPU (flexible plastics), filled filaments (wood, composite fibers …). The choice of colors is also very wide and allows an infinite number of combinations.

If you have a particular project, do not hesitate to contact us to find the best materials together.

FDM wire removal
FDM wire removal
FDM printing
3D printing with molten wire

Materials and finishes for 3D printing with Fused Filament Fabrication

At Axis, which focuses on 3D printing for businesses, we work primarily with professional prototyping materials. However, if you have a specific need, do not hesitate to contact us to define together the best material for your project. You can also consult our material sheets.

Materials in stock and commonly used:

  • ABS
  • ASA
  • PC

Deadlines and part design tips

For the dimensions of your parts we are able to respect the standard NFT 58-000 normal class

For your 3D printing projects using molten wire technology, it takes 2 to 5 business days depending on the size and finish chosen. For your mini series, please contact us to give you a precise deadline according to your parts and quantities.

Regarding the design of your parts, plan for a minimum wall thickness of 0.8mm.

Our means of production

  • 1 Stratasys FDM Fortus : 400 x 355 x 355
  • 1 Fortus 900 : 900 x 600 x 900
  • 1 Strateo DUAL 600 of e-motion techDimensions : 600 mm X 420 mm X 500 mm

How it works?

In order to obtain a part using molten wire deposition technology, several steps are necessary

  • Preparation :
    • First of all, it is essential to have a 3D file obtained with 3D design software (CAD).
    • This file is then processed by our cutting software to prepare each layer according to your parameters (layer thickness = print fineness). The manufacturing supports are generated and associated with the part. These supports serve as scaffolding for the fabrication of the overhanging parts.
  • Manufacturing:
    • The file generated in the previous step is then transmitted to the machine (network/USB or more often on a USB key). This 3D printer is composed of a platform (heated or not depending on the material), a print head that will move on the X and Y axis. A Z axis, which will lower the platform after printing each layer.
    • Once the temperature of the head reaches the level you set, which corresponds to the melting point of your material, the head begins to move over the platform.
    • The path taken is the one defined in your file and the plastic flows from the heated nozzle. The plastic cools quickly thanks to the fans attached to the print head. Once the layer is finished (the head has returned to its starting point), the machine lowers the platform by the height defined for a layer and the process starts again.
  • Finishing :
    • The part is lifted from the platform
    • It is then cleaned, rid of its supports if necessary.
    • Our model makers sand it and manually sand it if necessary, then apply the finish(s) you want (varnish, primer, paint, inserts, transfer, metallization, …).

To learn more about our other means of production in additive manufacturing, do not hesitate to consult our page dedicated to our machines.

Need a quote or information on rapid prototyping?

Ask us for a  quick quote  or call us at +33 (0)5 55 06 17 17