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3D Printing at the Library of Engineering and Science: Filament Guide

Disclaimer

If providing your own material, please write your name and Purdue email on the box/spool and drop it off at the 2nd floor desk in the Wilmeth Active Learning Center (WALC) during regular library hours.

We prefer to print with co-polyester and PLA filaments.  Below are a variety of suggested filament types, as well as materials we've had issues with.  If you'd like to print with a material not on this list, but of an acceptable type, we are generally willing to make a good faith effort to print.  Please email walc3dpr@purdue.edu with any questions.

We will do our best to print with your material, but failures do occasionally happen, especially with filaments we don't have experience with.  We cannot refund or replace material lost to print failures.  (Any failures using our provided material do not count against your 100g limit).

Recommended Standard Filament

Almost any brand of 2.85mm or 3mm PLA will work with our printers.

3D Fuel 2.85mm PLA

*Provided Material Type

A reliable PLA.  This is the filament we will use unless you specify otherwise in your request.

 

Hatchbox product image

Hatchbox 3mm PLA

Hatchbox is an excellent all-around filament, suitable for most printing needs.

 

eSun product image

eSUN 2.85 or 3.00mm PLA

 A reliable PLA filament. May be listed as 2.85mm or 3mm- either is fine.
 
 

LulzBot PolyLite PLA Polymaker Filament, 2.85 mm, 1 kg Reel, True Black

PolyLite 2.85mm PLA

Prints well and is available in a variety of colors.

 

 

nGen Product ImagenGen by colorFabb

This co-polyester material is a newer development designed to remove the downsides of PLA and ABS.  It is a very versatile filament that can print with high detail; supports remove easily and cleanly (after some minor cleanup).

Recommended Specialty Filament

NinjaFlex product imageNinjaFlex 3mm TPU

*Provided Material Type (Gold, Clear, & Black.  Up to ~25g per print.  Email for more info)

Flexible filament that creates non-rigid prints.  Depending on the print settings, the final product can be anywhere from slightly springy to completely collapsible.  Feel free to email with questions about printing with this material type.

 

PolyWood Product ImagePolyWood by Polymaker

*Provided Material Type

This PLA uses foaming technology to replicate the texture and density of wood.

 

Woodfill Product ImagewoodFill by ColorFabb

This PLA based filament has actual wood pulp mixed in to create a print that can be sanded, stained, and otherwise treated like wood.

Filaments to Avoid

Magnetic Iron PLA product imageMagnetic Iron PLA

Caused damage to our printer during testing.  We will not print with this material.

 

 

Nylon Product ImageBridge Nylon by Taulman 3D

Prints have been inconsistent, often with noticeable warping. 

 

 

ABS - Any company

We've had significant issues with warping when printing with ABS.  Smaller prints may not have a problem, but larger prints seem to fail more often than not.  Purchase at your own risk.

 

 

PETG product imagePETG - Any company

This material caused damage to our print surface during prior use.  We will consider smaller prints, but cannot complete large items.  Please email us if you want to use PETG before submitting your request.

 

 

PRILINE product imagePRILINE brand PLA

From our experience, this filament had inconsistent width and prints failed repeatedly.  Some spools may be fine, but purchase at your own risk.

 

Snapmaker PLA FilamentSnapmaker brand PLA

From our experience, this filament was very fragile and had a tendency to break fairly frequently.