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  1. #1

    Do YOU know a 3D printer that can print a micro part at .002"-.004" wall thickness?

    I need a micro part that can print .002" - .004" wall thickness for the medical field. I need to prototype before manufacturing. Please let me know if you have any recommendations or if you can help me with this.

    I believe stereolithography may be an appropriate option. Thank you!

  2. #2
    Student
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    Add CarterTG on Thingiverse
    0.002" and 0.004" equate roughly to 50 and 100 microns. (0.050mm and 0.100mm)

    DLP Stereolithography printers have been dipping below the 50 micron X-Y detail since 2012-2013.

    My envisionTEC micro stated it's X-Y resolution at 39-31 microns and 25-micron Z layer height. For the prints I task it with, I've never found need to push and verify those limits.

    My next addition was the B9 Creator v1.0 Kickstarter printer. It used a 1024x768 DLP projector and was configured to squeeze those pixels into an area that gave 50 micron detail. At the time, B9's Red resin was all there was and I had the time to see how far it could be pushed:

    http://www.b9c.com/forum/viewtopic.p...tart=100#p5445

    The community started to learn that pigment level in the resin could be used to fine-tune the amount of curing. Greater control meant higher detail.

    When the B9 Creator v1.2 printer released with improvements and new features, it used an HD projector to squeeze 1920x1080 pixels into a region featuring 30 microns X-Y. Additionally, a Black resin became available. The model in this thread should demonstrate the crisp level of detail nicely:

    http://www.b9c.com/forum/viewtopic.p...p=37940#p37940

    I do recall someone printing an insanely small lattice structure. Not sure if the image is still on B9's social media feed.

    One additional bonus with the higher-pigment black resin, things that took several hours on my v1.0 with the Red now prints in 15-20 minutes with my v1.2 machine.

  3. #3
    Engineer-in-Training
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    SLA would be my choice for that. The parts would be insanely fragile.

  4. #4
    The band that I want to print is 7mm X 13mm X .004 inch thick = we currently use ultra thin Mylar or stainless steel for this purpose so it would be great if I could print this with a material that results in something just as flexible. I understand I could get that thin but will the material have some flex to it or just be rigid and break?

  5. #5
    Engineer-in-Training
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    The flexibility depends on the resin that they use.

  6. #6
    Any recommendations of a company that is capable of this? I found a few different companies online below but I'm open to any other suggestions. I was told by an engineer at a micro-manufacturing company that 3D printing might not work. But like anything else, it might all depend on who you talk to.
    http://www.potomac-laser.com/services/
    https://www.stratasysdirect.com/
    https://www.protolabs.com/

  7. #7
    Engineer-in-Training
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    Where are you located? There is probably a prototyping house close to where you are. There are several here in Cleveland. Protomold I have used for injection molded parts and they were easy to work with and are fast with turnaround.

  8. #8
    I'm located in south Florida. I reached out to a local prototype house named blueringtechnologies. He said he could print .002" thickness but it would be brittle. I assume I would need a material like ninjaflex filament in order to create a thin part that won't break. Therein lies the challenge.

  9. #9
    Engineer-in-Training
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    There are flexible resins but man after looking at that part i would not get my hopes up. I have designed foaming soap pumps that use very thin walls to seal the liquid from the air. We had to go to prototype molds.

    That is where companies like protomold come into play. They have an auto quoting process and can turn molds around quick. Standard turn around is 3 weeks from order to parts but can be expidited down to a week. Then you can tweak that mold before comiting to hard multi cavity molds.

  10. #10
    Is this the company? https://www.protolabs.com/injection-molding/
    Also, do you know that they have the capability to mold micro thin walled parts. I was looking at manufacturers that specialize in micro injection molding like this company for future runs: http://mtdmicromolding.com/portfolio/

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