First off, an apology! Over the past year, I’ve been kept from posting for a number of reasons. Life happens. But now I’m back, and I’m ready to share more about my latest adventures in 3D printing. How about we start with a question?
Let’s say you are stranded on a desert island with a miraculously charged 3D printer, but you can have only one kind of filament. What do you choose, and what do you make with it? In my Q&A section, I cover a few of the different types, and there are others that constantly show up on the market.
For this highly unlikely scenario, you would first have to decide what would be more important for you at the time. PLA is the cost-effective and easy to print, but it can also be brittle–and money isn’t an object on a desert island. You could decide to aim for something tough and durable, like PC-Max (which I mentioned in an earlier article). Or you could aim for flexibility and use a nylon-based filament for tools.
There’s no right or wrong answer to this (though I’m going to say that you’re cheating if you want to bring food to be printed and then eaten). There are filaments specifically designed for all kinds of purposes. You could bring a filament that would conduct electricity to help you signal for your rescue or something that would glow in the dark so you can print out large “SOS” letters to display on the beach.
Remember that one of the biggest perks of owning a 3D printer is the accessibility you have to pretty much anything you want to design or build. Replacement parts, decorations, tools, or fun fidget toys to hold and play with are all only a quick print away. After you’ve tested a pattern on a basic filament, try upgrading to something more distinct to better match your purposes.