How Strong is Your 3D Print (VIDEO)

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People are often amazed at how lightweight and strong our 3D printed Nylon plastic can be with the correct geometry.  It is an important part of the design process to test your 3D printed designs to breaking point.  Prototyping a product before releasing it for sale to others in your Shapeways shop is essential to ensure that your design will stand up to the stresses of use, and not make your customers find out for you.

“People keep asking me, how strong is that printed chassis. My answer usualy was..”uuhhmm pretty strong I think”

Following is a video by Martin of Magic’s Models on his VRCP channel on YouTube that tests his Wild Willy chassis for losi mrc remote control car 3D printed in Nylon by Shapeways.

People keep asking me, how strong is that printed chassis. My answer usualy was..”uuhhmm pretty strong I think”… Well since version 3 is being build right now, I have version 1 and 2 lying around doing nothing. Might as well break one to see how much force it takes. And now for the scientific part, torque is force times lever-arm distance…

In this case the distance from the applied torque to the scale (to measure the force) is about 20 cm (about 8 inch). The force measured at the time of the snap is about 2 Kg (2000 g or about 4.4 lbs). This means the torque applied at the time of the snap is probably more than it will ever be driving the chassis around on any trail…. 

testing strength shapeways 3D print

Check out Martin’s unboxing video showing how perfectly his 3D printed part fits into his existing car shell.


  1. D3Dstuff

    Wonderful items! I wonder how cheap it is compared to none 3d printed jewelry similar crafts. would be great to hear more about few comparisons.

  2. Benny

    It would be cool if there was also a cheaper option of just getting high detail brass without the gold plating. That would be really useful for making parts on miniature brass etch kits aswell as model railway parts. As bras is non magnetic it is often used in model trains. utilizing this it would be possible to make an entire working model train locomotive minus motor and wheels on shapeways. Also for replicating brass ornaments in old houses, steam punk gadgets and making conductive components in electronics that can be soldered on.

    Yesterday I actually considered using this material for a cog that needed to withstand a lot of force which had broken earlier when it was made out of strong and flexible plastic. but I deemed it too expensive.

    I hope to see a cheaper brass only version soon.

    1. Gabe Leader-Rose

      Benny – thanks a lot for your feedback! We are constantly looking at new metal options to offer, and it’s always good to hear about ways you can use them. For Gold Plated Brass, much of the cost isn’t just from the plating, but from the meticulous hand polishing that’s necessary for all the complex designs we print. However, we are aware that there are many applications for metals that might not need a snazzy finish, so we are evaluating ways to bring our users some less expensive offerings. Stay tuned!

  3. Hunter

    Can you not stop after the “durable” nickel plating, or allow us to choose how many nickel “dips” it goes through? I know it’s been asked but I still wonder why we weren’t offered plain high-detail brass. If much of the costs come from hand polishing (non-robot labor) why not eliminate it? Let us grind down the sprue. Let us do the plating. Shapeways is becoming more than a storefront to buy pre-made goods, but is finally becoming a legitimate replacement for manufacturing methods.

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