POLYJET SUPPORT MATERIALS PART 1: INTRO TO POLYJET SUPPORT MATERIAL
An introduction the PolyJet's support materials SUP705, SUP706B, and SUP707. We discuss unique characteristics and support strength recommendations for each.
Step 1: Introduction
PolyJet fabricates models using two materials: Model and support.
Whereas FDM can build unsupported overhangs of less than 45°, PolyJet needs Support material for any overhang or unsupported section:
Support materials assist in building 3D models. PolyJet Support materials can be removed by various and varying methods. Choosing a method depends on the type of Support material, the size of the model, how delicate it is, the amount and location of the Support material, and other factors.
This tutorial gives a quick introduction and breakdown of the various PolyJet materials.
The next tutorial in this series will discuss design tips, removal tips, benefits, and application tips for achieving optimum design, quality, and mechanical properties with PolyJet Support material. We will also explain removal options for each Support material.
Step 2: Introducing the PolyJet Support Materials
Support material fills gaps and spaces in the model during printing, and is removed after printing. Support assignment can be guided by some user input regarding support strength, model finish and feature accuracy.
There are three types of PolyJet Support materials:
SUP705 is compatible with WaterJet only, which is the fastest way to remove support. However, removal by WaterJet also requires more effort and might not be suitable for fine features and intricate areas. SUP705 offers excellent surface smoothness and technical properties.
In addition to being removable by waterjet, SUP706B also dissolves in a solution of water, caustic soda and sodium metasilicate. Its main applications are parts with fine and intricate details, where a WaterJet might break the model. It has the same dimensional stability as SUP705. We recommend using SUP706B if it is compatible with your printer, as it is a more advanced and versatile version of SUP705.
SUP707 is completely soluble in water and hands-free. It is the ideal Support material for models with extremely fine features. It is ONLY compatible with printers EDEN260V/VS and materials VeroWhitePlus, VeroBlue, VeroGray, VeroClear. As this Support material is only compatible with one printer family with very specific uses, we will only address SUP705 and SUP706B for the remainder of this tutorial.
Step 3: A word about grid style of the Support material (support strength):
The grid structure is made out of model material. It is printed in a scaffold around the model during a print to add structure, density, and holding power for the gel-like Support material.
PolyJet offers 3 support strengths (grid styles): Lite, Standard, and Heavy.
Both SUP705 and SUP706B can use all 3 grid styles.
However, each Support material has a different default grid style that we recommend using. The default grid style for SUP705 is standard. The default grid style for SUP706B is lite, since it is made of a sturdier compound that is capable of holding more weight. When printing with SUP706B, change the default grid style from Lite to Standard if:
A) You are printing with Agilus30 and Tango materials, which need more support due to their flexible properties.
B) You are printing a model that includes floating parts that are more than 30 mm.
Ultimately, however, choose your grid structure according to the geometry and material being used. You can always change the grid style to heavy if you think your model needs extra support.
Step 4: The breakdown
See our graph of each Support material below.