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Brass Material Information

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Beautiful Pictures of 3D Printed Brass

Finishes
Gold Plated Gold Plated
Polished Polished
Raw Raw
Price $30.00 handling fee
$22.00 per cm3
$20.00 handling fee
$18.00 per cm3
$10.00 handling fee
$16.00 per cm3
Ships in
See current status
15 business days
19 business days for products larger
than 56 mm in all dimensions
12 business days
16 business days for products larger
than 56 mm in all dimensions
10 business days
14 business days for products larger
than 56 mm in all dimensions

Design Guidelines for Brass

The rules to follow in order to create successful products in Brass. Read more on model checks
Max bounding box 89 × 89 × 100 mm

For us to be able to make a product, each of its pieces must fit within these dimensions.

For Brass, the maximum bounding box is determined by the size of the printer we use to create a wax version of your product, as well as the limitations of the plaster mold it is cast in.

To ensure the successful creation of your product, make sure the bounding box fits within our maximum limit. If it does not, you can try scaling it down, removing unnecessary features to reduce the bounding box, or considering another material with a bigger maximum bounding box.

Min bounding box 2.4 × 2.4 × 0.6 mm

For us to be able to make a product, each of its pieces must be bigger than these dimensions.

For Brass, the minimum bounding box is determined by our ability to successfully cast very tiny products.

To ensure the successful creation of your product, make sure the bounding box of your product is larger than our minimum. If it is not, you can try scaling it up, thickening, combining, or enlarging parts and features, or trying a material with a smaller minimum bounding box.

Min supported wall thickness 0.8 mm thick 0.6 mm thick

A supported wall is one connected to other walls on two or more sides.

For Brass, the minimum supported wall is determined by our ability to successfully print your product in wax and then cast it in a plaster mold. Walls that are too thin will break in the mold-making process.

To ensure the successful creation of your product, make sure supported walls are thicker than the minimum requirement. If they are not, try making them thicker.

Min unsupported wall thickness 0.8 mm thick 0.6 mm thick

An unsupported wall is one connected to other walls on less than two sides.

For Brass, the minimum unsupported wall is determined by our ability to successfully print your product in wax and then cast it in a plaster mold. Walls that are too thin will break in the mold-making process.

To ensure the successful creation of your product, make sure supported walls are thicker than the minimum requirement. If they are not, try making them thicker or adding supports.

Min supported wires 0.8 mm thick

A wire is a feature whose length is greater than two times its width. A supported wire is connected to walls on both sides.

For Brass, the minimum supported wire is determined by our ability to successfully print your product in wax, create a plaster mold, and then cast and polish the metal object. Wires need to be strong enough to not break during the wax printing and plaster casting process, and to allow metal to flow within the part during metal casting.

To ensure the successful creation of your product, make sure supported wires are thicker than the minimum requirement. If they are not, try making them thicker, or consider a material with a smaller minimum supported wire requirement. If you have bulky areas of a model connected by thin wires, these wires will need to be significantly thicker than the minimum to allow the metal to successfully flow within the model.

Min unsupported wires 1.0 mm thick

A wire is a feature whose length is greater than two times its width. An unsupported wire is connected to walls on less than two sides.

For Brass, the minimum unsupported wire is determined by our ability to successfully print your product in wax, create a plaster mold, and then cast and polish the metal object. Wires need to be strong enough to not break during the wax printing and plaster casting process, and to allow metal to flow within the part during metal casting.

To ensure the successful creation of your product, make sure unsupported wires are thicker than the minimum requirement. If they are not, try making them thicker, or consider a material with a smaller minimum unsupported wire requirement. If you have bulky areas of a model connected by thin wires, these wires will need to be significantly thicker than the minimum to allow the metal to successfully flow within the model.

Min embossed detail 0.40 mm high & wide 0.35 mm high & wide

A detail is a feature whose length is less than twice its width. Embossed details stick out from a surface.

For Brass, the minimum detail is determined by the wax printer's resolution. When detail dimensions are below the minimum, the printer may not be able to accurately replicate them.

To ensure details come out clearly, make them larger than the indicated minimum. We may refrain from printing products with details smaller than the minimum, since the final product will not be true to your design. If your product has details smaller than the minimum, try making them larger, removing them, or considering a material with finer detail.

Min engraved detail 0.35 mm high & wide 0.30 mm high & wide

A detail is a feature whose length is less than twice its width. Engraved or debossed details go into a surface.

For Brass, the minimum detail is determined by the casting process. Brass products are printed in wax, and then a liquid plaster is poured around them and solidifies into a mold. When liquid metal is poured into this mold, the pieces of plaster that create engraved details can break off if they are too small.

To ensure details come out clearly, make them larger than the indicated minimum. We may refrain from printing products with details smaller than the minimum, since the final product will not be true to your design. If your product has details smaller than the minimum, try making them larger, removing them, or considering a material with finer detail.

Min escape holes 4.0 mm diameter for one escape hole


2.0 mm diameter when there are two or more escape holes

Escape holes allow unbuilt material inside hollow products to be removed.

To create Brass products, a plaster mold is poured around a wax print of your product, and then Brass is cast into the plaster mold. For products with hollow areas, escape holes are essential for two parts of this process. First, the liquid plaster must be able to enter the hole to fill in the hollow area. Then, once the metal is cast, the escape hole must be large enough to allow removal of the hardened plaster from the hollow area. If escape holes are too small, the hollow area may be completely filled in with metal or plaster.

To ensure the successful creation of your product, make sure the escape holes are large enough to allow the plaster to get in and out. Multiple holes make this process easier. If your holes are not big enough, you can enlarge them, add more, or fill in the hollow areas so they are solid. Positioning escape holes at the opposite ends of a product (one on top, one on the bottom) will help the finishing process.

A single escape hole at the end of a cavity will not allow material in the corners near the escape hole to fully escape. So we recommend multiple escape holes at both ends of the cavity.

Clearance 0.3 mm clearance

Clearance is the space between any two parts, walls or wires.

Brass products are printed in wax, and then a liquid plaster mold is poured around them. If the clearance between features is very small, the plaster may not fully infiltrate the tiny gap. And if it does, a plaster wall that is too thin can break when the liquid metal is poured around it. Both issues can cause defects in your product.

To ensure the successful creation of your product, make the clearance between walls and wires greater than the indicated minimum. If your clearance is too small, try making the gap bigger, or consider fusing the features if their independence is unnecessary. You can also try a material with a smaller minimum clearance.

Interlocking and enclosed parts? No.

Multiple parts per model file? No, except single pairs of mirrored or identical parts such as earrings and cufflinks.
Accuracy ± 0.125 mm

More On Designing for Brass

Material Traits
Some detail is lost during polishing and plating

Polishing and plating give this material a beautiful finish, but can have an impact on fine details. During the polishing step, fine or sharp-edged details may be polished down or even broken off. During plating, intricate engravings or holes may be filled in partially or completely. Keep this in mind when you're designing fine details.

Internal detail can not be polished

We can only polish well-reachable surfaces, so tight internal spaces may remain unpolished and show slightly uneven plating.

Design tips
Avoid long unsupported stone holding prongs

Prongs for holding stones cannot be too long without any support structure. Supports and connecting beams prevent wax from breaking in the production process, and allow the final model to hold the stones securely.

Material Info

Look and feel

Gold Plated Brass and Polished Brass both go through extensive hand polishing to give them a smooth, shiny finish. Polished Brass has a bright yellow coloring and, with 22k plating, Gold Plated models will resemble authentic gold objects. They are both perfect for jewelry and precious products.

Raw Brass has a rustic matte look, with rough surfaces and some tarnishing (color spots). It is great for antique-looking objects, functional parts, jewelry prototypes, and metal models that you'd like to polish and finish yourself.

Shapeways' Brass consists of 15% zinc, 5% tin, and 80% copper.

Handling and care

Like all brass, our Polished and Raw offerings will tarnish over time and may need to be polished.

Gold plating is durable, but can still scratch or wear through

Gold Plated Brass is a durable material, but can still scratch or wear through. Prolonged surface wear can rub off the finish. To prevent damage, we recommend storing your item in a soft cloth pouch away from other products, and avoiding exposure to household chemicals and cleaning products.

How it's 3D printed

Brass models are fabricated using a complex five-step process. First, the model is printed in wax using a specialized high-resolution 3D Printer. It is then put in a container where liquid plaster is poured in around it. Once the plaster sets, the wax is melted out in a furnace, and the remaining plaster becomes the mold.

Molten brass is poured into this mold and set to harden. The plaster is broken away, revealing your new product. Raw Brass is briefly tumbled. Polished and Gold Plated Brass are carefully cleaned and hand polished. Gold Plated Brass goes through a final electroplating process for an outside coat of 22k gold. Please be aware that polishing and plating can wear down or fill in very fine details and edges.

What Others Are Creating With Brass

Raw Brass
Polished Brass
Gold Plated Brass
Disclaimer:
Please note that the 3D printed products are intended for decorative purposes. They are not suited to be used as toys or to be given to underage children. The products should not come into contact with electricity and be kept away from heat. Our materials, except for 3D printed glazed ceramic, are not food safe.
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