Dual-Extruder?

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johnwalker1
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Feb 22, 2020 3:11 pm

Dual-Extruder?

Post by johnwalker1 » Sat Feb 22, 2020 3:16 pm

Hello! My wife and I got a our first 3d printer some time back, and while it's fine as a starter, the frequent breakdowns and technical difficulties have me looking for an upgrade.

Most of what we print are figurines for tabletop games, usually humanoids about 1.5 inches tall. So pretty detailed work, although it doesn't have to be stellar (it's just for us and our friends).

My question isn't what printer to get, but rather if a dual-extruder printer would be worth it, or if there are better solutions. Or solutions that are worse, but are still good and somewhat cheaper. I've heard a lot of good things about dual-extruders for models like these, where the supports can be dissolved in solution. Does that (and the appropriate hardware) seem like the best bet? Or would I be better off looking at learning MeshMixer or shelling out for simplify3d?

Thank you! :)

Sodium100mg
Posts: 66
Joined: Tue Feb 11, 2020 9:45 am

Re: Dual-Extruder?

Post by Sodium100mg » Wed Feb 26, 2020 3:55 pm

I'm new to 3d and I find simplify3d to be very easy to use and produces good output, but at the end of the day, 3d printing will always be a mix of technology and voodoo magic. The best I can hope for is to dial in a set of settings, then never change them.

For small detailed work, a resin might be better, but whatever way you go, simplify3d might still be a good choice. Resin of filament, the object still will need structure to build off of, in order to start printing an elbow connected to nothing, but the structure. I watch the instructional videos and see people with years of experience still have prints go bad. I might have gone resin, except for the smell.

Simplify3d has worked very well at creating stuctures that break away easy and leave little trace, but try to print small fingers by the structure can cause issues. The software has provisions for more material at the top of the structure, which allows a separate extruder to form the top layer, which can be a soluble filament that can soak for hours and disappear. Using dual extruders, the unused extruder can drop, which a 2 into 1 or a 2 into 1 has filament mixing and requires a prime pillar, where the prime pillar can use more filament than the object. Filling the bed with objects can share 1 prime tower.

Simplify3d makes the structures removable enough that except for internal structures that I want to remove, a 1 color would work well enough for my needs. Swapping between the PLA filament and the soluble filament is a slow and more expensive.

fostuzigne
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Feb 29, 2020 6:04 pm

Re: Dual-Extruder?

Post by fostuzigne » Sat Feb 29, 2020 6:09 pm

Sodium100mg wrote:
Wed Feb 26, 2020 3:55 pm
I'm new to 3d and I find simplify3d to be very easy to use and produces good output, but at the end of the day, 3d printing will always be a mix of technology and voodoo magic. The best I can hope for is to dial in a set of settings, then never change them.

For small detailed work, a resin might be better, but whatever way you go, simplify3d might still be a good choice. Resin of filament, the object still will need structure to build off of, in order to start printing an elbow connected to nothing, but the structure. I watch the instructional videos and see people with years of experience still have prints go bad. I might have gone resin, except for the smell.

Simplify3d has worked very well at creating stuctures that break away easy and leave little trace, but try to print small fingers by the structure can cause issues. The software has provisions for more material at the top of the structure, which allows a separate extruder to form the top layer, which can be a soluble filament that can soak for hours and disappear. Using dual extruders, the unused extruder can drop, which a 2 into 1 or a 2 into 1 has filament mixing and requires a prime pillar, where the prime pillar can use more filament than the object. Filling the bed with objects can share 1 prime tower.

Simplify3d makes the structures removable enough that except for internal structures that I want to remove, a 1 color would work well enough for my needs. Swapping between the PLA filament and the soluble filament is a slow and more expensive.
Hi buddy, thanks for the brief guide on this. Just have one query, will different color freeze with time if not used?

Regards,
F. Smith

Sodium100mg
Posts: 66
Joined: Tue Feb 11, 2020 9:45 am

Re: Dual-Extruder?

Post by Sodium100mg » Sun Mar 01, 2020 12:40 am

That someone with more experience than me will need to answer.

ashking0198
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Jun 03, 2020 12:04 pm

Re: Dual-Extruder?

Post by ashking0198 » Thu Jun 18, 2020 1:05 pm

Dual extruder / hotend.

Pros: Multiple materials lets you use soluble supports or to play with properties of different materials in the same objects ie. designing a part where the outside is "rubberized" with TPU for shock dampening while in certain areas, inside, there is PC materials for strength, multiple colors is obvious and using different nozzle diameters for different features of your object to speed up print times (just like BCN3D suggest). Also if you get a bad clog or something breaks in one hotend you can still use the other one. Bonus: "ditto" printing - you can print two same objects from two extruders simultaneously as long as their dimensions don't exceed the distance between the nozzles.

Cons: difficult align - both hotends need to be exactly on the same horizontal plane but even with that I've still experienced prints catching on the second hotend due to slight curling up. (Unless you make the second nozzle move up like the Ultimaker 3 and Stratasys do or make it independent movement like BCN3D or Formbot do). You need to do a lot of tweaking for each set of materials because some pairs will fuse together well, some - won't. Same goes for just using different colors - you might get color contamination from tiny oozes from another color unless you nail the settings.

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