19/12/2018 – 3D Prima Easyprint PLA Rainbow Neon

3D Prima, a brand I had seen before in several webshops, but never used myself. Time to contact them.

According to the manufacturer, this is what you get 340 meters filament (+/- 1%), 1 kg filament, diameter 1.75 met een tolerance of ± 0.02 mm, a temperature window between 185 en 220°C. They claim on their website, that the tolerance of 0.02 mm is continously being monitored to keep their promesse.

Before I start printing, I need to know the average diameter of the filament on the spool. This varied over a distance from 5 meters and 10 measuring points, between 1.71 and 1.72 mm. It seems there monitoring process does the job.

The packaging of their material for shipping from Sweden is perfect. The risc for damaging the products is minimal. The boxes and labels on the boxes are very clear. Inside the box, there is a flyer with some explanations and guidelines for the different filaments of the brand. The coil is packed in a vacuum plastic bag, which contains a small silicate bag together with the coil. This is to keep the filament dry. The label on the spool leaves no room for mistakes. Shortly said: Very clear! A thing I love and appreciate very much is, the spool is transparent and they’ve putted some measurements on it. With these you can better estimate how much filament is left on the spool.

One thing caught immediatly my attention: the windings of the filament on the spool are perfect! Unless you make an operator error, there is no way this is going to get tangled.

As always, my 1st test is a temperature tower with a height of 0.2 mm layers. You need this info to select the best temperature that works for you. Remember that different brands can have different results, even different colors inside the same type and brand, can have different results. The best result for me was 195°C. Stringing was minimal.

After this, it was time for our calibration piece. Layers 0.2 mm. I love the result

  1. A little bit of stringing, even on this low temperature. Nothing to bad.
  2. On the bottom, there is 1 layer not 100% bonding to the rest of the printed object. Is this bad? No! Keep in mind this piece was designed to be a hard test WITHOUT the use of supports. This result is more or less normal. 

Time for a little variation in color. Since this is rainbow filament, I wanted to print something big, so this effect could be seen. So it would be a big vase. NOT in vase-mode, no. Why not? I wanted multiple perimeters (4 in this case). This would give me a better look at start and stop points of eacht layer. When in vase-mode, you only have 1 perimeter and 1 start and stop point. Layer height was 0.2 mm.

This vase is about 180 mm heigh. I’ve started the print and went out of the house? When I came back, I was stunned with the result. This is about a flawless print!

Still, there is 1 minus I discovered. When I got home, the print was done about 4 hours. After completing a print, my extruder automaticly goes to a parking spot. That way it is more easy to remove the print from the bed without the printhead being in the way. This spot is ‘left top behind”. The coil is about straight above the filament guider. Thus there is not to much sideways tension on the filament. As you can see in the next picture, the filament needs to go to the parking spot too, after finishing a print. From this guider to the parking spot, the filament needs to bend in  a natural way about 5 cm down and 10 cm to the left. And what happened over that distance? Yes, the filament snapped, just above the extruder. At first I was thinking, ok, not funny, but not to bad. But thinking a little further: what are the odds this happens in a bowden setup from i.e. 90 cm? This was a new coil, freshly opened from the vacuum plastic bag  and this happened only 1 day after opening the bag. I’m going to ask a little explanation of the manufacturer about this.

Conclusion:

  • Packaging is perfect for transport and against moisture.
  • The windings on the coil are perfect.
  • the diameter is very consistent. IN my case only a 0.01 mm deviation.
  • My best temperature was 195°C. This is the lowest I’ve ever used for PLA on this printer.
  • The perimeters of the print are about perfect.
  • In case I would use a bowden setup, I would certainly unload the filament after each print and not printing again immediatly. That way you could avoid an unvisible break in the filament ( in the tube or extruder) and save yourself the time fixing that afterwards.

The overall result is: YES, I love it and would use it again.

PS: I’ve made a couple of extra fun prints with this filament

5/1/2018 – Today I’ve got an answer from the company, explaining the breaking of the filament.

EasyPrint is a “Pure” PLA with no additives and this has many benefits. It´s very easy to print, you don´t need such a high temperature and it works an almost any machine. The drawback with this PLA mix is that is more fragile than let´s say our SELECT which contains a impact modifier. This impact modifier makes it more tough and it doesn´t snap of as easy. It´s always hard to decide which way to go but our own tests and the feedback we have received is that it works very well even without the impact modifier. Why it snaps of every time you use it I´m afraid I don´t really have any good explanation for. Prusa machines is one of the few printers we haven´t tried it on and I don´t know if the have any extra settings that retracts the filament more and/or harder than other printers? The solution for this is that from the next batch we make we will have a very small amount of impact modifier in the mix (less than 2% ) and this should be enough to make the filament more “pliable”.

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