Designing for 3D printing can save you time, material, and costs.

Designing for 3D Printing

When you design for 3D printing, you may need to design differently than you do for subtractive machining. Simply removing pockets such as in the first example in the video can save many hours of print time. In my second example, removing a block of material saves me three hours in print time (and some cash).

Support Material

In the third example, I optimize my part so it can be manufactured free-standing, without additional support material. The support material holds up sections of your design that jut off the main body. My example shows how a single degree difference in the angle of a face can change whether or not you need to use support material.

Hacking Your Design

My last example shows how some creative thinking and additional geometry can save time. I used a trapezoidal prism under the battery pack.  The support material will be printed on top of that shape, instead of from the printing plate and on parts of the design itself.

Taking a second to imagine the printing process and viewing your design in Markforged’s 3D Printing software Eiger can help you tweak your design to save time, money, or material. Some changes might increase material use but decrease printing time. Other changes do the opposite. You must weigh your priorities and adjust your design accordingly.

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