Ever wondered how PolyMaker Filaments are made?

Author: Matt Tyson/Sunday, 1 May 2016/Categories: 3D Printing News, 3D Printer Filament

Ever wondered how PolyMaker Filaments are made?

You sit down after a hard day of work, it’s your nephews birthday tomorrow and he is a huge Batman fan. The shops have closed but you have your brand new 3D Printer, why not print him a unique figurine? After downloading a detailed model generously uploaded by a talented 3D artesian, you realise this model will take 7 hours to print! No time for failed prints or warping. You have a fresh roll of PolyMaker PolyPlus PLA that you ordered after reading it prints hassle free. You had never used PolyPlus before but it came packaged with some recommended settings so you decide with some faith to give it a try. It just so happens that the roll you ordered was a nice translucent blue PLA, perfect for that nostalgic Batman T.V show look. Fifteen minutes into your print, “so far, so good” you think to yourself. Two hours pass and you realise you are on your way to a successful print out of the box. You sit down and smile, enjoying the odourless printing of PLA as your 3D Printer behaves, masterfully printing layer by layer quietly and peacefully. No nozzle jams, odour or warping!

We love PolyMaker filaments partly because they are so easy to use!

So what exactly goes into PolyMaker filaments to make them so easy to use?

Here at Polymaker we pride ourselves on our quality control. We take our manufacturing seriously and that’s why we decided to share just how serious we take it. This level of care and control has not been seen within the industry to date. We do not wish to simply adhere to current standards, but aim to raise it to a new level for filaments in the 3D Printing Community.” - PolyMaker

Concept, Development and Testing

The journey starts just outside Shanghai, China at the PolyMaker headquarters. It is here that they focus on developing and testing new and innovative 3D printing materials for manufacturers and the growing 3D maker community. These filaments are vigorously tested in PolyMakers 3D Printer lab which boasts over 25 different 3D Printers! Whilst this lab may seem like a Disney land for ambitious makers, the work here is important for ensuring the best printer compatibility for their filaments. With their filament optimised, PolyMaker complete a trial production run, this run allows them to test their machine setup so the customers receive a consistent product eg. Quality, Diameter and Colour.

Production is ready to start, with 8 steps of Quality Control in place to ensure the best product.

COMPOUNDING

Quality Control Step 1

The raw materials are blended and tested for consistency, purity to make sure they reach PolyMakers quality specifications. 

The blend then tumbles into a volumetric hopper, melted compounded and extruded. After extrusion the material is pelletised.

Quality Control Step 2

These pellets are tested to ensure compositional accuracy.

Filament Extrusion

The material is thrown into the hopper for online drying, after being gently brought up to heat the material is extruded to become what we know and love, filament! 

Quality Control Step 3

PolyMaker use a custom designed device to ensure the extruded filament is only the best quality!

The filament is gradually cooled, and blow dried by 45 mph winds.

Quality Control Step 4
A state of the art laser guage is used to monitor filament and roundness in real time.

Post Processing and Spooling

Quality Control Step 5

Each batch of filament is texted to ensure they meet PolyMakers specifications (melt flow, softening point, diameter, roundness etc.)

The filament is then post processed by PolyMaker. This part is TOP SECRET 

Quality Control Step 6

All filaments are forced to pass through a ring guage with a precise I.D. to ensure that there are no abrupt changes in filament which could cause a nozzle jam.

Drying & Packaging

Quality Control Step 7

All PolyMaker filaments are dried to a moisture level of <0.1% to ensure the best printing quality.

Quality Control Step 8

The filament is then vacuum packaged in a resealable bag with a dessicant bag, and are left for 24 hours before boxing to ensure that they are leak-free.

The products are then packaged with care and are shipped across the globe to PolyMakers international distributor and reseller network. This includes Australia’s sunny shores where they reach the door here at 3D Printing Solutions.

It is great to see the craftsmanship and care PolyMaker put into their products from conception to packaging and we are proud to to offer their empowering products across Australia.

You can read about the entire PolyMaker range HERE!

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