Stratasys – PolyJet Support Removal Tip

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If you use standard PolyJet breakaway support, you know how nice it is to quickly clean off a 3D printed piece using the waterjet and be left with your final part with relatively little work. But you also probably know some of the challenges that come with cleaning smaller internal geometries and undercuts, or when you have a large quantity of parts to clean.

One method we use on most prints to help reduce the amount of hands-on support removal time, is to let the part soak either in just plain room temperature water, or in a solution of water and dish detergent (or for FDM users, a weak NaOH solution) for an hour or two to really loosen up the support material. Another tip, to get rid of that last bit of support coating, is to soak the part in the detergent solution after you've manually removed the support.

While soaking may add extra time to the total post processing, it definitely helps reduce the amount of hands-on time by loosening up the support material and helping to break out some of the harder to reach undercuts. The greatest benefit is when post-processing larger quantities of parts at one time.

Note: It is important to not use warm water as PolyJet parts tend to soften and warp in heat.

SolidWorks

The part shown above was printed in matte finish, and soaked for 1 hour in plain water. The left image is after 1 hour, the middle image is after gentle agitation and shaking off loose support, the right image is after ~15 seconds of water jet.

 

 

Owen Lu

Application Engineer | Additive Manufacturing

Computer Aided Technology