You Can Mass Finish FDM Parts
Stratasys posted on April 05, 2013 |

Mass-finishing, stratasys, objet, FDM, parts, manual labor, For additive manufacturing applications where surface finish is important but volumes are too high for hand-finishing, some at Stratasys have long suspected that mass finishing would work. This time-tested method of polishing parts by the batch is traditionally used on metal components, so the company's applications engineers set to work experimenting on Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) parts. After much testing with various mass-finishing media and processing times, the company now recommends this process for FDM parts built with ABS-M30, PC, PC-ABS, ULTEM 9085 and PPSF thermoplastics.

Deformation of the surface is the technical term for this process, which cuts and/or burnishes the surface to smooth out FDM layer lines. Economically, mass finishing makes it possible to process many parts at the same time to make them primer-ready or paint-ready, or give them a smooth finish that resembles injection molding. Consistency among parts is greater with mass finishing, as well as being able to repeat a desired surface finish time after time. 

For an introduction into mass finishing, check out the video:

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