3D printing is everywhere. It’s used by hobbyists, makers, designers, engineers, and more – for such a variety of different purposes.
And just like 3D printing is everywhere, so are the SOLIDWORKS Champions! Danute Petrova-Nikolova is a designer and a SOLIDWORKS Champion from Germany who also runs a YouTube channel, D Workshop.
Among many things, one of the things Danute is exceedingly passionate and knowledgeable about is 3D printing. With this year’s switch to include SOLIDWORKS Champions as LIVE Design stars, Danute was a natural fit to speak on FDM printing. This article explores just 6 of the fantastic tips Danute shared, but be sure to watch the full appearance below for many more!
SOLIDWORKS has included a variety of 3D printing functions for many years, but, as there is so much capability packed into the software, it can, at times, seem easy to miss! With 3D printing’s popularity and use cases only increasing year-over-year, we were happy to host Danute as Danute engaged the audience on a variety of 3D printing tips and tricks from Danute’s own experiences.
Pro Tip #1: Printing a Leveler for Your Printer
As Danute acknowledges early on: there are a vast variety of 3D printing options today. Danute experienced her printer not sitting perfectly level; to remedy this, Danute printed a leveler print to correct this.
Pro Tip #2: You Can Print Threads!
More than 1mm pitch is necessary. And when you are 3D printing threads, it is important to consider how your part will be oriented as it prints, which is something Danute explains here.
Pro Tip #3: Use Print3D inside SOLIDWORKS
Danute explores the Print3D feature in depth throughout the episode. In this specific example, Danute shows how you can set a bottom plane for your model. With the hole oriented the way that it is about this particular part, it is important to have it set on the bottom – instead of having the part print in its natural 3D model orientation.
Pro Tip #4: Use Chamfers to Support Thin Walls
As Danute discusses, if walls are too thin, they can prove to brittle in the physical world and break. Danute advises using chamfers to firm these walls with more support – a tip that got lots of ‘ahas!’ in the YouTube live chat!
Pro-Tip #5: How to Tell if Faces Require Support
All printers have different properties. Within the Print3D tool in SOLIDWORKS, you can input your printer’s degree of acceptable overhang to evaluate which faces on your 3D model will require support when printed – as seen here in Danute’s example.
Pro-Tip #6: Use Delete Body Features to Manage Quick Multi-Body Prints
In this example, Danute shows some quick ways to separate bodies for multi-body prints. Depending on your printer and its capabilities (including the prep software you’re using), this could be a good method. Danute also shows, later on, how to take advantage of configurations in a part or assembly file for a similar purpose.
If you’re interested in watching more episodes of SOLIDWORKS LIVE Design, as well as our other livestream programs like SOLIDWORKS LIVE, please be sure to subscribe to our SOLIDWORKS YouTube channel for more! Check out live.solidworks.com for more information on previous and upcoming streams.