At Shapeways we pride ourselves on having the most high quality materials available for 3D printing. One of our popular and readily available materials is our white, strong and flexible plastic (WSF) which is laser sintered nylon plastic in a variety of colors and finishes. This material is incredibly versatile, and can be used for a wide variety of applications. Check out these incredible sculptures printed using our plastic material.
Feel like the Holiday season is flying by? So do we! That's why we wanted to give you a friendly reminder about your Holiday deadlines by material. You can see a full list of Material deadlines on our Holiday planning page, but here's a quick overview as the Brass family's cutoff is today!
Some of you may be subjecting you 3D prints to extreme forces like impact, sheer weight, constant flexing and maybe even a little heat, but have you ever wanted to know how hot you can go? Shapeways material tester Brandon has shared a video on his YouTube Channel heating Shapeways Nylon (WSF) 3D prints in mineral oil to deformation then melting point.
"To test I heated WSF in mineral oil and tested how it behaves at higher and higher temperatures. The material starts to soften at around 155-165C and starts to significantly deform and melt at around 170-180C."
The video runs for around 17 minutes but the good stuff (deformation) starts to occur around 155c at the 10:00 minute mark and total failure at around 15:00 minute mark at 170c.
Thanks again to Brandon for sharing, if you have an material torture tests please let us know in the comments on the blog. Below is some wet Nylon I tortured in the microwave
At the request of Shapies far and wide, we’re doing all that we can to ensure you get the items you care about even faster. So we’re excited to share that we’re reducing lead times for three of our materials! White Strong & Flexible Polished and Polished Alumide will change from 12 to 9 business days, and Frosted Ultra Detail from 8 to 6 business days. So now you can have your 3D Printed products in your hand quicker than ever before!
As you may already know, we recently lowered the pricing of our Ceramics! As a result, Shapeways Shop Owners got really excited and wanted to share their newly priced models with you. Check out the amazing deals now available on classic ceramic models from espresso cups to vases, candle holders to chopstick holders!
Have you ever wished our materials were cheaper? We have too! We’re committed to make 3D printing accessible to anyone, and today, we’re excited to announce that we’re repricing our ceramics to be more consistent with how we price the rest of our materials - by volume of material used instead of surface area. We’re also making it easier for you to calculate and compare pricing: This means that most existing ceramic models will become much cheaper like this candle holder by Virtox!
We're excited to announce three more amazing new material finishes for you to 3D Print in! Introducing the latest and greatest materials to the Shapeways family: Matte Black Steel, Polished Grey Steel, and Polished Nickel Steel, which are all great for jewelry, structural parts, sculptures, and anything else that you would want to 3D Print in steel!
Thats right, now you can do REALLY big earrings, monster bracelet or giant Sterling Silver skulls. Your only limitation is your imagination (and the 89 x 89 x 100mm bounding box (possibly your budget)). We have increased the maximum on all of our Sterling Silver finishes from Raw to Premium.
What big shiny Silver designs are you going to 3D print next?
Here at Shapeways we're always looking to improve by making the materials and the services we offer you more robust and easier to understand. Tomorrow, we're launching a new mystery material, and tonight, we're changing names of our Silver finishes. In an effort to have congruent nomenclature across materials families, "Silver Glossy" will now be known as "Polished Silver;" and regular "Silver" will now be labeled as "Raw Silver." We hope that this helps customers and makers alike when selecting the best materials for their models. The Polished Silver is shopper-ready and great for jewelry, while our Raw Silver has a textured surface and lower price point, great for vintage designs, prototyping and large models. Our highly hand-polished, 100% Sterling Silver will remain "Premium Silver." The design guidelines for Silver will remain the same. We hope this simplifies material specifications as we continue to introduce new finishes and families.
Whenever we launch a new material, we first do extensive in-house testing. We'll look at its quality and its usefulness for manufacturing products, but also at production issues like rejection rates and machine downtime.
The next step is to offer it to you as a 'trial' material. During a period of about two months we learn everything we can about the new material. We collect your feedback and test our design guidelines and material pricing.
With Elasto Plastic, we reached the trial stage twice before but still weren't convinced we were offering you the best material that we could. The third time's the charm of course, and we're happy to announce that Elasto Plastic is now here to stay!
Some small changes in the design guidelines and pricing will follow shortly, but we wanted to get the word out that Elasto Plastic is now a permanent member of the Shapeways Materials family!
Whenever we talk to our community, your number one request is always: 'Can I get it faster?'. And we're listening! We have been working hard on streamlining our processes and optimizing our machines for speed.
As a first result we are now able to deliver White Strong & Flexible products to you faster than ever: your products will now ship in 6 business days instead of 8!
For now, we offer this faster shipping time for 'basic' WSF (not polished or dyed), and for models with all axes < 20cm. All other models in Strong & Flexible Plastic will still ship in 12 business days.
We're working hard to reduce the delivery times for all our materials, so long as we don't sacrifice quality or reliability. So stay tuned, we will have more good news coming your way next week!
We have a new 3D printing material waiting in the wings ready to launch and we recently introduced Elasto Plastic as our first Maker material but as we think about which material to introduce next, we first want to ask you what you would like to make, but cannot with our current range of materials?
Let us know what you would like to 3D print, and the material properties required to make your design successful.
Email your responses to email@example.com and the materials team and I will investigate the what 3D printing materials will best fit your requirements.
If you have an image or a URL for your design please share that with us in the email so we can better understand your material requirements.
We do already have some very interesting materials planned for the rest of this year, but we are excited to incorporate more into our 3D printing material selection on Shapeways.
We are not going to tell you just yet what the new 3D printing material is going to be, nor can we confirm or deny that there are clues in the latest short story by Bruce Sterling, From Beyond the Coming Age of Networked Matter. We can confirm that every letter in the name of the new material can be found in the short story, however the new material has NOT been tested by Bruce Sterling, yet.
You MAY be able to see, touch and smell the latest material next week at SIGGRAPH in L.A.
In our mission to enable everyone to make, buy and sell their own
products, we know that the price of each product is important. Whether
you're making something for yourself or selling your design in our
shops, a product that's too expensive immediately sends you back to the
drawing board. Shapeways' model is and will be to give everyone access
to state of the art 3D printers at the best possible price. As a
result over the years, our prices have come down substantially. White
Strong & Flexible is one of our most popular materials, and we are
continuously working to lower our cost to enable us to lower prices for
Before we can further lower prices, we've run
into an issue that's holding us back: Some products are very large yet
use very little material - typically these are "wiry" in design and have very low density, meaning they use very little material for the size of the object.
In some cases these products take up an entire print tray in our
largest printers. The technical term is that these products have a large
"bounding box with low density". As a result, some of these products
cost us much more than what we charge to produce today. In some of the
most extreme cases, we might charge $100 for a product today that costs
us $3,000 to make. I'm sure you understand this isn't a healthy
situation for us, particularly as our goal is to make 3D Printing
affordable for everyone.
As part of our effort to
lower our prices across the board, we have to solve this issue with a
change in our pricing structure that will only impact these "extreme"
For the White Strong & Flexible, the pricing change will be as follows: for models with an overall bounding box of 10,000cm3 or more (for instance, a cube of 20 x 20 x 25 cm) AND that have a density less than or equal to 2.6%, we switch to a new pricing scheme.
Instead of a price per material volume, the new price will be based on the total bounding box volume. This will more accurately reflect the actual costs. The price per volume of bounding box will be $0.0385/cc.
be clear: products that are either small enough OR have a sufficiently
high density will not be affected by this change – this only affects
very large models with very low density.
Today's change is a necessary step in moving towards a lower price for
the White Strong & Flexible and this price change addresses a few
edge cases that were blocking this effort. All existing models will be
updated with the new pricing models as will all future uploads.
the change goes live we will monitor what happens and are confident that
it will enable us to lower prices for the rest of the products made in
Strong & Flexible in the future.
Our mission at Shapeways
has always been to enable anyone to make anything they want. First, we
built a system to allow Makers to design and purchase models for
themselves. Then we created Shapeways Shops to enable anyone to launch a
business and sell their products worldwide. Now, we want to make it
easier for Makers to gain access to the newest 3D printing materials on the market and test them with us. Think about it like one big, global 3D Printing R&D team.
excited to announce the launch of our first 'Maker Only' material: a
flexible, rubbery plastic called Elasto Plastic! The finish, color, and
properties are not yet ready for sale to a wider audience, but it's a perfect
material for any Maker out there who can work with a textured surface and
maybe a little extra powder arriving with their model.
The new, improved Elasto
Plastic is a great option for Makers as it is an incredibly durable
material with a lot of really interesting properties such as high impact
resistance, flexibility and compression (depending on the geometry), along with a high level of static friction because of the surface
texture. Though not strictly water-tight, it can hold liquids, but it does
not like high temperatures or fire. It is a valuable addition to our 3D Printing material options here on Shapeways that we are sure you will
find incredibly useful and fun.