Monday, November 14, 2016

Experimenting with PVA Dissolvable Support filament from Rigidink Video

I've wanted to play with PVA for a long time, and now I have, thank you very much to for sending me the sample. What I've learned is:
  1. It does indeed dissolve
  2. ABS and PLA do stick to PVA
  3. PVA sticks to the build plate
  4. but PVA doesn't stick to ABS or PLA
When I had the opportunity to observe one of the big boy 3D printers their dissolvable supports were on point. They'd anchor to the side of a vertical wall and build up to the area needing support, growing, taking advantage of the small overhang they're capable of minimize material needed. It was glorious and not anything that PVA is capable of that I can tell. 

I actually have some of this magic support material, pilfered from a roll that the chipped enclosure insisted was empty. Yup, the big ones are pulling the inkjet model, only for $100 per cartridge. The problem with their dissolvable filament is it requires a caustic solution to dissolve it in. 

But back to PVA, it definitely shows promise, but you have to take into account a few things:
  1. Manually set your supports so that they go down to the build plate in at least part. Do not rely on it sticking to the material
    1. Simplify3D's support control is great for this
    2. Manually creating a support object is another way
  2. Turn off the ooze wall. Since every other layer is PVA, and it won't stick to the build material, it will only end in tears
  3. Try to avoid traveling your resting nozzle across the material
    1. This is just good advice for life
I think it goes without saying that this option exists only for those of us with dual feed systems. I don't see any way this could by done by swapping filament midway. isn't paying me to say any of this, and especially not this: I love how sells PVA. I would order this in nothing but sample sizes and keep it in the bag until you need to use it to avoid the water situation. Because while it's really dry here, PVA will dissolve over time if not kept dry and individual factory sealed baggies are the best way to do that.

Hilbert Cube by tbuser is licensed under the Creative Commons - Attribution - Share Alike license.

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