Home Practice & Makers YouTuber uses 3D printer for injection molding production

YouTuber uses 3D printer for injection molding production

YouTuber Stefan from CNC Kitchen has shown the possibilities and challenges of using 3D printers for injection molding processes in a video.

The project began with the design of a simple injection mold using CAD software. The mold was then produced using a Formlabs resin printer made from heat-resistant resin. This material is particularly suitable for injection molding applications due to its temperature resistance and rigidity.

Initial trials with a modified Prusa MK4 3D printer showed that standard PLA filament did not completely fill the mold. High-speed PLA and other materials such as ASA and PETG also failed to produce satisfactory results.

A decisive improvement was achieved by preheating the mold to 120°C. This prevented the plastic from cooling down too quickly during injection. In addition, the use of a more powerful hotend proved to be advantageous.

Using a Peopoly Magneto X printer, equipped with a high-performance hotend and a 1.8 mm nozzle, the mold was finally filled almost completely. Particularly good results were achieved with flexible TPU filament.

The experiment showed that a precise design without undercuts is essential for more complex shapes. In addition, the injection pressure plays a critical role. Despite the challenges, the project demonstrates the potential of 3D printers for low-volume injection molding. It enables the production of detailed parts from flexible materials that are difficult to realize with conventional 3D printing processes.

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