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Wall Thickness

Wall Thickness
In 3D printing, wall thickness refers to the distance between one surface of your model and the opposite sheer surface. For the minimum wall thickness you can use is 1mm. However, if you plan on making larger sections, the wall thickness should be increased to at least 1.5 mm.

Hollow out Your Model

Hollow out Your Model
A rule of thumb for hollowing out your models is to maintain a wall thickness of minimum 1.5 mm. We advise to keep the support material trapped in your model. If the trapped support material is not an option, you will need to make at least 2 escape holes with a diameter of 10 mm.

Flat Planes Can Cause Warping

Flat Planes Can Cause Warping
Designing a flat plane is a bad idea. In most cases, your model will deform. This process is called "warping". The key here is to avoid flat planes or hollow out the plane to prevent warping.

The Right Space between Your (Moving) Parts

The Right Space between Your (Moving) Parts
When you want to design something like a pearl or chainmail necklace, the spacing between your surfaces is crucial. It will determine the flexibility/bendability of your design. We recommend keeping a minimum space of 0.5 mm between designed surfaces. The more space you can afford the better.

The more complex your design is, the more complicated it becomes for the support material to exit the empty spaces. Try to visualize how the support gel will flow through the spaces of your 3D printed design.

Assembly

Assembly
When designing models that need to be assembled, it’s important to provide enough distance between the parts that will be attached together. A perfect fit in your software package does not mean a perfect fit after printing because your software ignores the friction present in the real world. Therefore, always leave at least 0.6 mm between the different parts.

Textures

Textures

If your model has textures, make sure you upload all info to our site. How to check? Well, if you see your texture in the 3D print lab preview, then we have the info. However, if you see a mono-colored or un-textured model, it’s possible there is some info missing. If this happens, check your export settings and the file format used.

Some file formats are able to include textures in the file (e.g. colored STL, VRML, SKP, X3D, and DAE), while others store the texture in a separate image file and map file (OBJ). In the latter case, group all files related to the model into a zip file and upload it to our 3D print lab. To show and handle the textures correctly the archive should not contain any additional folders, this way we will be able to process all necessary info to print it the way you want.

Improving Colors

Improving Colors

A short physics lesson in colors will help you get the best possible hue on your print, because the color you see on your screen can differ slightly from the printer’s colors. A pixel on your screen is composed of Red, Green, and Blue (RGB), while multicolor printers use Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Key (Black). Since your screen and our printers do not use the same color system, the set of colors might shift slightly. In both CMYK and RGB, mixing these basic colors creates new color options. CMYK works pretty much like the box of paints you used back in school. If you don’t have the painting color you’re looking for, you need to mix two existing colors together. Adding colors together usually means that the new color will be slightly darker. That’s why this system is called a ‘subtractive color model’. It will lead to a somewhat darker color. Adding all colors together produces black. Screens, however, do not work like our box of paints. Instead of using paint or ink, they use light. The colors of light are red, blue, and green (RBG). When the colors are added together, the result gets brighter. When all three colors overlap, the color becomes white. That’s why this system is called an ‘additive color model’.

When colors are converted from RGB to CMYK, the color intensity changes a bit. So, what you see on your screen and what comes out of the printer might look slightly different. Bright colors on a screen tend to look duller and darker in CMYK. Generally, the brighter, more vivid and vibrant the colors on your screen are, the bigger the difference between your 3D model and your 3D print will be. We advise you to make the contrast, gamma correction and saturation higher. This can be achieved in Photoshop, IrfanView, GIMP or other photo editing software.

Another problem is that computer screens have adjustable settings – so factors like brightness, gamma and color temperature can make a huge difference. Monitors also can vary greatly in color accuracy, depending on the technology (TN, PVA, IPS, OLED) and the calibration setting. Besides, the color gamut or complete subset of colors on the printer is lower compared to the screen. Does this color difference make a huge difference? In most cases, it really doesn’t. But if you need a really precise color that must not change even slightly – let’s say for a 3D model that features skin color – you might want to order a smaller test print first and experiment a little to get the color exactly the way you want it.

Embossed and Engraved Details

Embossed and Engraved Details
For engraved text or surface details, we recommend letters with a minimum line thickness of 0.5 mm and a depth of 0.5 mm. For embossed text and surface details, we recommend letters that have a line thickness of at least 0.5 mm and a depth of at least 0.5 mm.

Design Specifications

Minimum Wall Thickness
1 mm
Minimum Details
0.25mm
Accuracy
N/A
Maximum Size
300 x 300 x 300 mm
Clearance
N/A
Interlocking or Enclosed Parts?
Yes