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Spyder 3D Filament Evaluation

Click here to download the scanned form.

Overall, we love this filament. We can't wait to try it in 2.85mm on some of our other machines. We used a Makerbot Rep 2 (no heated bed, I know I know) because it produces much higher quality builds that our Printrbot (also unheated bed) and our Tiertime Up Mini 2, our other 1.75 machines. The Up Mini 2 has a heated bed and an enclosed build chamber, but frankly leaves a lot to be desired in build quality.

All of the builds below were done at 240°C, 0.2mm layers, 90mm/sec.

A note on that "Orbium" tape. It seems similar to the green 3M 8992 polyester that we use on our TAZ 4, but the Orbium is a little more rigid and has a little bit more surface adhesion. We found it extremely difficult to apply to the bed, especially to get the bubbles out. The green 3M tape is also difficult but not as much so.

We normally build with blue painter's tape on our custom glass bed on the Rep 2, so just as a test, we tried building the classic makerbot "stretchlet" with the Spyder 3D filament on blue painter's tape to see how it would stick. In our opinion it stuck almost exactly the same as PLA would.

Then we coated the bed with the Orbium tape and did another build, and they turned out virtually identical:


All the rest of the builds were done on the Orbium. The surface adhesion was such that we managed to take quite a few chunks out of the tape in the process of prying parts off. We did not have time to try building on bare glass coated with PVA (how we build nylon and PET). I suspect it would be really, really difficult to pry parts off of that, but who knows?

Next we built our dodecahedron, one of 4 standard objects we build with all our materials. With over 250 SKUs of filament in our system in over 2 dozen materials, we use these 4 objects to tweak settings and compare materials, since we are quite famliar with them.

The dodecahedron turned out very nicely with very little stringing under the overhangs (it is built without support), however there was a little bit of inconsistency across the build.


The classic "rook" was next. It is a good test of surface detail, and it came out great:


The final build of our four standard demonstration objects is an in house design that can be especially challenging to build with certain materials as it has a 45° overhang which can sag if not built at the proper temperature and speed.


Next up is a scan of my head, sized at 75mm, to test how makerware-generated support comes out. It seemed fine.


This next build is one of our customer's regular jobs, an interior for an HO scale passenger rail car. It did bow a little bit after it was removed from the bed, but it didn't curl while building. I thought about laying it on one of our heated beds and cranking it up to soften it and see if it would unbend, but as of this writing we haven't tried that.


As a special project, I designed a pet food bowl in Solidworks and built it with the Spyder 3D material. The bottom is 100mm x 100mm so it is a good test for curling, and as you can see it did curl a little on the corners, even though they have a pretty good radius. Again, this is on an unheated bed, this likely wouldn't have happended on a heated bed. This is still nowehere near what you'd see with ABS or ASA.


Last, to test for fine detail, the Thingiverse T-Rex skull and jaw are built at 50% scale. The teeth did not turn out as smooth as they would in regular PLA, and maybe might have benefitted from a lower temperature or slower build speed.

We did weigh a couple of builds and compare them to the exact same builds in PLA and the Spyder 3D material is 22% lighter than PLA.

Again, we really like this material, and look forward to trying it in 2.85mm so we can use it on our Lulzbots and ZMorphs with their heated beds. We did not test for resistance to water, chemicals or UV.

 
   
   
   
   
   
   

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