Sunday, September 27, 2009
PLA vs ABS - warping
Warping was a major issue for me when I was building larger objects out of ABS plastic. The lack of warping with PLA is quite striking; I thought I'd post a comparison photo here for the rest of you to enjoy. The x carriage on the left was made with ABS, and the x carriage on the right is PLA, as well as the idler bracket in front. That ABS x carriage isn't the best part I made out of ABS, but it isn't the worst either; most of my larger parts exhibited worse warping than that.
I will need to find a source of PLA in the UK for sure now.
It's actually an advantage for a lot of RepRap parts though - the bearing inserts for instance; instead of doing a lot of filing and carving to get them to fit just right, I dunk them in some hot water from the kettle, and mold them to fit. Handy!
I've almost finished the batch of PLA from Zach, so soon I'll start on Vik's batch. Interestingly, the Ingeo datasheet for 4042D PLA (Vik's stuff) lists a glass transition temp of 135 C, while Natureworks lists it at 52 to 58 deg C. Must be a typo (C vs F), as Vik mentioned having to keep his steppers cool.
I've mentioned this before, but the lack of off-gassing is a huge benefit for me as well.
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