Why do you need a thickness analysis in 3D printing?

Why is it necessary to perform thickness analysis in 3D printing? First, 3D printing is characterized by the equipment that makes the product. Second, 3D printing is characterized by the chosen 3D printing technology. In both cases, the main parameter that determines the quality of 3D printing is the resolution of the 3D printer and technology in combination. The output resolution will be manifested not only on holes, chamfers, mates, but also and mainly on thicknesses. If the thickness of the walls or of a certain area turns out to be less than the resolution of the equipment, then we may face the following problems:

  1. The 3D printer will not print a thin-walled area.
  2. The 3D printer will print a thin-walled area with gaps and interlayers.
  3. The model will be incorrectly bent and shrink in the section of a thin wall.

Typically, the distribution of minimum thicknesses and 3D printing technologies is done in the following order:

3D printing technology Minimum wall thickness
SLM 1 mm (thickness less align with the expert)
FDM 1.2 mm (thickness less align with the expert)
MJM (MJP) 0.3 mm (thickness less align with the expert)
SLA (DLP) 0.5 mm
SLS 1 mm

To avoid such moments, when preparing a model for printing, you must be able to analyze the thickness. To do this, you need to master one tool in Meshmixer or NetFabb. Please note that before checking the model for the correct thickness, you need to make sure that the model meets the rest of the requirements for 3D printing.

Thickness Analysis in Meshmixer?

After importing your model, go to the “Analysis” tab and click on the “Thickness” button. In the “Min Thickness” block, set the minimum allowable thickness.

Анализ толщин в MeshMixer

The program will highlight in red those areas where the wall thickness is less than the minimum specified value.

How to check in NetFabb?

After importing your model into the working area of the program, you need to click on the “Wall Thickness” button.

Анализ толщины в Netfabb

Next, you must set the minimum wall thickness in the Wall Thickness Threshold window.

Анализ толщины в Netfabb

By analogy with MeshMixer, the program will show you in red those areas where the wall thickness will be less than the specified one.

Анализ толщины в NetfabbFor analysis from our side, write to 3dprint@studia3d.com