By joezlo
To those who have experience with 3d printed parts:

I just got a Ben of Kent 80% Neutrona Wand for my spirit pack, and I was wondering about the textured surfaces of some of the 3d printed parts.

Is it common to sand them for a more natural finish?

Joe Z
By err404
It’s your call, but you will probably want to finish the surface. Get a can of filler primer and spray on several layers. This will fill in most of the layer lines and be relatively easy to sand. You can also use wood filler or bondo to cover larger gaps and seams.
Fill and sand until you get the surface you want.
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By NotSabbat
Im not familiar with BenOfKents work, but I am super familiar with smoothing out 3d printed parts. XTC 3D is a two part epoxy made for smoothing out 3d printed parts. Its works really well and it also strengthens yours parts, which is the best part in my opinion.
Bondo Glazing putty is another go to for me when smoothing out 3d printed parts. Smooth it on, let it dry and then sand.
While XTC3D can get you part smooth by itself I find that its good to do 2-3 thin coats of XT3D, fill in the remaining striations with the glazing putty, sand with 300 grit, maybe another layer of XTC3D (it will soak into the putty as well) then follow up with layers of paint, sanding to as fine a grit that you want.
Its a lot of sanding (good ventilation is a must BTW), but you can get a mirror finish if you want.
By davidkram2003
I use a wood filler for my 3D parts. Doesn’t have a smell and is easy to use. Very rarely do I have to sand it down. Only if use too much in a certain spot.
By +Halomobilo+
I'm in the process of assembling a 3D printed pack at the moment and have used wood filler on some parts as well as XTC 3D and both have worked really well. I'm still getting used to the XTC 3D and have had some good results with both although I have still done quite a bit of initial sanding and post processing but I think that's more a case of me getting used to the products. Wood filler used sparingly is a nice cheap solution and as davidkram2003 said, no fumes which is great if you only have a confined space in which to work.
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By Banjo
My entire pack is 3D printed. I use a Creality CR10. you can see pics on my build thread (GB1 pack from a little bit of everything) That said, I have been able to get nice results from just pre-sanding, not too aggressively, with 120 grit, then using high build sandable primer and finally wet-sanding everything with 220 grit paper, then put on the top coat of whatever paint you need.
It is also important to have parts made from high quality 3D models, and printed on a machine that has been tuned well. Before I got my settings tweaked in, some of my prints needed some serious help,and I still have lots of room to improve.
I have no experience with Benofkent, but I would hope that if he's selling parts, that they are of a pretty good quality to start with.
The other suggestions put up here are all good too. Every one is a decent technique to have in your toolbox.
Good luck, and have fun.
By livewire008
I had a BenofKent trap kit which was completely 3D printed, and I found using a filler first then sanding worked much better than simply sanding. I used "Bondo glazing & spot putty" and it worked wonderfully.
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By WindDrake
It's much easier to fill the striations than sand them. PLA is very, very hard, and irritatingly deforms when warm (while sanding!). Fill and sand. Bondo Spot Putty is probably your best bet. A runner up would be the Rustoleum Automotive Filling Primer.
By err404
I’ve been trying XTC 3D for the first time on my build and overall I like it a lot. I am struggling to get a smooth/consistent finish and I am still spending a fair amount of time sanding it smooth. But the layer lines are gone and it is easy to sand. The biggest advantage is that it can be used indoors with no/minimal vapors, whereas I can’t really use spray paints right now due to cold weather.
For what it’s worth my process has been: prep the raw part of most print defects (blobs, stringing, supports etc), epoxy glue the parts together (in logical sections to make sanding easier), fill in gaps/defects slightly thick (I have been using wood filler), rough sand these areas with 100 grit, apply primer (helps to reveal defects), apply XTC 3D in a thin layer, sand to desired finish, repeat primer and or XTC and sanding until you have the desired results.
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By timeware
I've been working with ABS. Experimenting with different settings. So far I'm not impressed with the material but I don't have an enclosed 3D printer. Prints are coming out very brittle and layers aren't sticking together. I'm using an Alfawise U 20 which is about the same as the CR10. The pieces that have come out as successful are easy to sand because of how brittle the material is.
I printed a TMNT mouser with the ABS. I was shocked I got a clean pull off the heat bed. When I pulled the supports off the figure the little guys legs snapped clean off. Simple matter of gluing the pieces back together. if your starting out in the hobby this isn't the material to work with.
By err404
I’m guess that you were printing at too low of a temp for the layers to adhere. Unless you are interested in vapor smoothing, I would recommend moving to PETG. It has most to the advantages of ABS (strength, flexibility, temp stability) but with less shrinkage. As a result an enclosed chamber is not needed and bed adhesion is less of an issue.
I don’t know if the U20 has an all metal hot end, but if it doesn’t, be careful with ABS or PETG. They run at a temp that is close to the Max for a PTFE lined hot end and can lead to quickly degrading print quality if they get too hot.
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By NotSabbat
You really need to have an enclosure if youre printing with ABS. Pretty much all the layers need to be heated or they contract and causes symptoms like, layers not adhering, etc.

PETG is my go to for stronger parts. Its a little finicky to get right, but once you have your settings its pretty consistent. Print at around 30mm/s.

PLA is the best material to start with. Its very forgiving.

so, if that was info you were looking for, there you go.
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By WindDrake
Printing with ABS is a chore, even with an enclosure.

PETG is my go-to for tough items. It's strong and fairly easy to get tuned well. My general settings are ~70mm/s.

PLA is a fantastic starter material, and now that more and more types of HTPLA's are coming out with higher glass transition temperatures, it's even better. I'm still generally printing in PLA where available.
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By DarkSpectre
I recently upgraded to the Adimlabs Creality knock off. I love the printer and while the surface texture isn't usually an issue to me, I've found that auto filler primer, Bondo glazing putty or wood filler works really well. I don't have any experience with XTC. Heard good things but it does take longer and PLA can old take so much surface sanding.
By joezlo
Filler primer with a little sanding worked great. But the 3d printed material sucked up the primer worse than some porous woods I've made guitars out of.

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