A Quick Guide to 3D Printing Finishing Processes

A Quick Guide to 3D Printing Finishing Processes

While it would be ideal, not every 3D-printed part is ready for its end users when it is finished printing. A variety of 3D printing finishing processes are available to improve the appearance and/or functionality of your printed part.

Depending on the desired outcome, 3D print finishing can be a time-consuming manual process. For example, a high-gloss painted finish might involve several stages of filling, sanding, primer and top-coat applications. If you don’t have the time or other resources for that kind of process, Proto3000 offers a full roster of professional 3D print finishing and assembly services.

On Overview of 3D Printing Finishing Services

The following are among the services available from Proto3000:

Bonding & Gluing

Need a model that’s larger than your print bed? Want to assemble a final product from 3D-printed parts? Bonding and gluing, including hot-air plastic welding, ultrasonic spot welding, and fasteners (mechanical), can be the answer.

Bead Blasting

Sanding can be a multi-application and imprecise process that takes hours. Bead blasting takes the place of sanding without the need for sandpaper, fillers and solvents.

Electroplating

Electroplating adds strength, durability and the look of metal to a part. In addition, you can electroplate with different alloys, including chromium, nickel, copper, silver & gold.

Painting

You can paint a part to improve its aesthetics and/or functionality. Some parts may require preparation and polishing stages before you paint them. Others may be ready for paint as soon as they are printed.

Dyeing

Paint adds an extra layer to the surface of a part. If your part cannot afford that extra layer, dyeing is an option to achieve similar detail, colour and creativity as painting.

Sealing

Whether to get a smoother surface or create a protective seal against harsh conditions, different sealing methods are available to suit your needs.

Other 3D Print Finishing Processes

With the filling, sanding and polishing mentioned above, and with vapor smoothing, support removal and parts assembly, there’s a 3D printing finishing process to meet your specifications.

If you found this post helpful, check out our article “Why Your Finished Product Is Better with Rapid Prototyping“.

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