What is Low Detail Plastic?

Low Detail Plastic is a type of material used in Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) technology. FDM is a 3D printing technology that works by “depositing” material layer by layer.

The model or part is produced by extruding small beads of thermoplastic  material (material that can be melted and formed into the desired shape) through a nozzle to form layers. The material hardens immediately after it gets extruded from the nozzle. FDM uses two different types of thermoplastic materials: Low Detail Oil-Based (commonly ABS) and Low Detail Bio-Based (commonly PLA).


FDM Optimization


If you want to make your part using FDM, there are  two (2) major factors to keep in mind to optimize your print:

  1. The volume of your parts, and
  2. The amount and angle of overhangs.


With all 3D printing, the volume of your part is directly proportional to the amount of material required to print it. To lower your parts volume (and optimize your print) you can consider making your piece hollow like in figure 2 (pending) or if you only need a functional part, you can make a more aesthetic part as in figure 3..


An overhang is an area of the design that is unsupported by anything (figure 3 pending). Because of the nature of FDM printing, an unsupported (overhang) part of the design will fall and not be printed. There are two ways to avoid overhang misprints. You can limit the overhang to no more than 45 degrees (figure 4 pending) from the base of the structure to print successfully. Another way to limit the overhang is to create supports on the overhang (figure 4 pending) and remove them after the printing is complete.


FDM Materials

Learn about PLA Learn about ABS

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