Silver 3D printing design rules

This documents describes the applicable design rules for the Silver 3D printing process on Shapeways.


  1. Self-contained features smaller than 0.5 mm are difficult to reproduce.

  2. Features which are to fragile to support the mass of the rest of the object don’t survive the production process. For example: two solid objects connected by a thin wire.

  3. Large thin surfaces are difficult to reproduce.  A 25x25mm square that is 1 mm thick will turn out where a 50x50mm square 1 mm thick probably will not turn out.

  4. We can reproduce features down to tenths of a millimeter as long as the feature is defined on top of or into another thicker feature.

  5. Long narrow cavities will turn out solid. A good rule of thumb is: cavity diameter = 2 x cavity depth.

  6. Free floating objects are not feasible in the Silver process. A chain or a ball in a cage are examples for free floating objects.

We'll surely be learning more about this process as we start using it, so keep an eye on our blog for updates on these guidelines.


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