How to Remove SUP706 Soluble Support on a 3D Printed Part
Removing SUP706 Soluble Support is quick and easy. Following the best practices ensures that you do not damage or break your part in the process.
The following is brought to you by Stratasys.
Once printing is completed, remove the part using a scraper or spatula. Take care not to pry or bend the model. SUP706 Soluble Support material can be removed manually with a WaterJet, in a Sodium hydroxide solution or with a combination of these methods. The method you choose will depend on the size and delicacy of the model and the amount and location of the support material.
What you will need:
Scraper or spatula
High pressure WaterJet (optional)
A cleaning tank (suitable for a solution of 2% sodium hydroxide and 1% sodium metasilicate, with a pump that circulates)
20 Liters of Water
400 grams of sodium hydroxide
200 grams of sodium metasilicate
15% glycerol solution (optional)
Step 2: Manual Support Removal
First, manually remove support material surrounding the model. This step is optional but will reduce solution soaking time.
Another option is a high pressure WaterJet. Be careful not to damage delicate models if you choose to clean them with a WaterJet.
Although SUP706 can be removed with a WaterJet, its advantage over SUP705 is that it can be dissolved in as sodium hydroxide solution (2% sodium hydroxide, 1% sodium metasilicate). SUP706 reduces time and labor with handsfree support removal and soluble support allows you to clean delicate parts and internal cavities without the risk of damaging the model with a WaterJet or cleaning tool. Models printed with soluble support can also be cleaned in batches, saving even more time and labor.
Step 3: Cleaning Tank
To dissolve the support material, use a cleaning tank, suitable for a solution of 2% sodium hydroxide and 1% sodium metasilicate
The cleaning tank should have a pump that circulates the solution continuously. To mix the solution, make sure the tank is clean then add 20L of water. Operate the circulation device and slowly pour 400g of sodium hydroxide into the tank. Continue mixing the solution until the sodium hydroxide is completely dissolved.
Step 4: Making the Solution
Add 200g of sodium metasilicate to the solution and continue mixing for about 15 minutes. You now have a solution with approximately 2% sodium hydroxide and 1% sodium metasilicate. If you need to fill a larger tank, maintain these proportions.
Step 5: Soaking Your Part
Allow the solution to cool to room temperature and soak the model for 30 minutes to several hours depending on how delicate the model is and how much support material needs to be removed. Models with walls less than 1 mm thick may deform slightly if soaked for more than 1 hour. Over time SUP706 dissolves into the solution, reducing its effectiveness. Replace the solution after approximately 1 month after average use.
Step 6: Rinse and Dry
After soaking, rinse the model thoroughly under running water. To strengthen the model, dip it into a 15% glycerol solution for 30 seconds.
Then, set aside to dry.
Step 7: Conclusion
Whether you remove SUP706 manually or with a sodium hydroxide solution, following the best practices reduces any possibility of damaging your part in the process. Being able to remove it with a sodium hydroxide solution saves time and labor and allows you to clean delicate parts and internal cavities with ease.