Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM)
How It Works
Fused Deposition Modeling operates in X, Y and Z axes, drawing the model one layer at a time. This process is similar to how a hot glue gun extrudes melted beads of glue. The temperature-controlled extrusion head is fed with thermoplastic modeling material that is heated to a semi-liquid state. The head extrudes and directs the material with precision in ultrathin layers onto a fixtureless base. The result of the solidified material laminating to the preceding layer is a plastic 3D model built up one strand at a time. Once the part is completed the support columns are removed and the surface is finished.
3D printers that run on FDM Technology build parts layer-by-layer from the bottom up by heating and extruding thermoplastic filament. The process is simple:
- Pre-processing: Build-preparation software slices and positions a 3D CAD file and calculates a path to extrude thermoplastic and any necessary support material.
- Production: The 3D printer heats the thermoplastic to a semi-liquid state and deposits it in ultra-fine beads along the extrusion path. Where support or buffering is needed, the 3D printer deposits a removable material that acts as scaffolding.
- Post-processing: We can easily break away support material or dissolves it in detergent and water, and the part is ready to use.
- The technology is clean, simple-to-use and office-friendly
- Supported production-grade thermoplastics are mechanically and environmentally stable
- Complex geometries and cavities that would otherwise be problematic become practical with FDM technology