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Precious Plated Metal Material Information

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Beautiful Pictures of 3D Printed Precious Plated Metal

Finishes
14k Gold Plated 14k Gold Plated
18k Gold Plated 18k Gold Plated
14k Rose Gold Plated 14k Rose Gold Plated
Rhodium Plated Rhodium Plated
Price $30.00 handling fee
$22.00 per cm3
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Design Guidelines for Precious Plated Metal

The rules to follow in order to create successful products in Precious Plated Metal. 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 Precious Plated Metals, 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 molds used for casting.

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 consider 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 Precious Plated Metals, 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 the 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

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

For Precious Plated Metals, 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, or consider a material with a thinner minimum supported wall requirement.

Min unsupported wall thickness 0.8 mm thick

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

For Precious Plated Metals, 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 unsupported walls are thicker than the minimum requirement. If they are not, try making them thicker, adding supports, or considering a material with a thinner minimum unsupported wall requirement.

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 Precious Plated Metals, 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 0.8 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 Precious Plated Metals, 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

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

For Precious Plated Metals, 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. Details smaller than the minimum may also be lost or warped in the polishing process.

To ensure details come out clearly, make them larger than the indicated minimum. We may be unable to print products with details smaller than the minimum, since the final product will not be true to your design. If your design 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

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

For Precious Plated Metals, the minimum detail is determined by the casting process. Precious Plated Metal 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 be unable to print 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 that can print in 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 Precious Plated Metal products, a plaster mold is poured around a wax print of your product, and then Precious Plated Metal 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.

Precious Plated Metal 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 tiny gaps. Even if it does fully infiltrate the gaps, 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? We cannot make interlocking or enclosed parts in Precious Plated Metal.

Precious Plated Metal products are printed in wax, and then a liquid plaster mold is poured around them. Since the liquid plaster must be able to flow around the entire product, it is not possible to make interlocking parts.

Multiple parts per model file? We only allow identical parts for earrings and cufflinks. Multiple Rings, bracelets and necklaces or any other models are not permitted in one file.
Accuracy ± 0.125 mm

More On Designing for Precious Plated Metal

Material Traits
Internal detail may not be polished

We can only polish surfaces we can reach, 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 anything connecting them. This connecting beam is to prevent the wax from breaking away. Also, with thin and long prongs, the product will not be able to hold big stones. Make sure your stone will sit snug and tight.

Material Info

Look and feel

Precious Plated Metals are cast in Shapeways’ Brass before going through extensive hand polishing to create a smooth surface texture. After being cast, we underplate the brass with a tin-rhodium alloy to provide strength and durability. Your products are then plated with .25 microns of the precious metal of choice. The outcome is a beautiful shiny luster with a high level of detail and smooth surface finish. To provide additional protection against wear and tarnishing, we deposit a very thin nanocoating on top of the precious plating. However, this nanocoating will rub off with time and wear.

Shapeways' Brass consists of 15% zinc, 5% tin, and 80% copper. The tin-rhodium and precious metal electroplatings are about .25 micron each, but this can vary based on geometry.

Handling and care

Precious Plated Metal 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

Precious Plated Metal models are fabricated using a complex seven-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, and your product is carefully cleaned and hand polished. Each product goes through two plating steps - first a layer of tin-rhodium is applied to provide strength and durability. Then your selected precious metal plating provides the finishing touch.

Technical documents

What Others Are Creating With Precious Plated Metal

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 Porcelain, are not food safe.
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