Different 3D printing methods - FDM or LCD UV?
It’s worth discussing the real pros and cons of Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) and resin-based methods. Both of them are designed for different purposes. FDM (sometimes “Fused Filament Fabrication” or as Zatrax calls it “Layer Plastic Deposition”) technique uses melted and extruded thermoplastic filament. As thin layers of material cool, they combine together becoming finished 3D object. Resin-based techniques use photopolymerization to fuse liquid into a 3D printed object. Professionals divide them into three main categories depending on the light source - DLP, SLA and LCD. The last one, used by Zortrax, uses a UV LCD display to harden sensitive resin liquid.
While FDM printers have wider range of filament types they can use, including Nylon, ABS, PLA, TPU etc., there’s also a nice collection of resin materials. You can use standard resins, engineering-grade, clear, ceramic or even flexible ones. Ultimately, there’s no doubt FDM offers more variety.
UV LCD printers have smaller working space, than devices that use filaments. That’s because higher resolution, and the fact that display has to cover the whole working area. Thanks to that, resin techniques are the best with dealing with the smallest details.
If it comes to the print speed there’s no clear winner. People who like tinkering around device settings may notice that FDM printers give a little more possibilities. But higher speed always comes with some quality trade-off.
Zortrax unique equipment
When you have Zortrax printer you can use their other dedicated accessories. Even if resin-based printing methods are easy in post-processing, it is sometimes required to remove excess material. Ultrasonic Cleaner uses high-frequency ultrasound to clean up your recently printed object without any additional manual work. DSS station, on the other hand, will remove all of the water-soluble support material from your FDM models. This automatic device doesn’t need any additional solvents to post-process prints with PVA or BVOH support material structures created by dual extrusion Zortrax printers available in Botland.store.
HEPA cover is an optional filtering device for the whole line of Zortrax printers. Thanks to the fan, carbon and HEPA filters, it eliminates unpleasant smells and catches over 99% of 3D printing emissions. Additionally, it maintains a constant temperature inside the working area, preventing ABS-based materials warping.
3D printing software and possibilities
Thanks to extensive connectivity of Zortrax printers, they can be easily used in scaled-up 3D printing farms, manufacturing large, durable products. Zortrax devices have Wi-Fi and Ethernet connection, allowing you to control them remotely due to cameras installed inside the working area. Special slicing and farm management software will help you divide your model into smaller pieces, allowing you to print them on one or many devices simultaneously. Zortrax created its own dedicated software - Z-SUITE. It offers many original ideas like edible supports for FDM prints, thin walls detection, optimization of model rotation on the build platform, and automatic triangle mesh repair.