Woodfill 3d printing? Yes it’s true, you can 3d print with wood. Woodfill filaments are a combination of wood particles and PLA. In most cases the makeup is around 60% wood fibres and 40% PLA. This means that most 3d printers can print objects that look and feel like real wood. You can even sand down designs that have been printed in woodfill. Woodfill has actually been about for a few years. This photo was taken at the 2013 3dprintshow in London and shows Colorfabb filament on display. The outcomes can be truly impressive.
Woodfill looks and feels like real wood.
Yes, it really does look and feel like real wood. The major benefit being you can 3d print more complex, impressive designs that you couldn’t make by traditional wood manufacturing techniques. The examples show here couldn’t really be made from any other technique. The opportunities for good design from 3d printing with woodfill are immense.
Woodfill filament comes in the same spools are normal plastic filament. However, due to the material make up, woodfill can be quite brittle from our experience. When a part is 3d printed, the outcomes are relatively good in terms of strength properties and, as mentioned, if you need to smooth the print you can sand a print down. It is worth noting that every time we have printed with woodfill, we have printed onto a cold bed and used blue painters tape to print onto. Also we slow the speed down from 120mm/s to about 50mm/s. The image here was taken at the 3dprintshow colorfabb stand and was being printed on an Ultimaker Original. Before 3d printing with woodfill make sure that you refer to the manufacturers specifications.
Woodfill won’t print on every 3d printer.
You may think that you can print in woodfill on any 3d printer? But you can’t, we found this out the hard way a few years ago. We had a solidoodle 2 machine and when woodfill was released we bought a role straight away. However, we couldn’t get it to print on our printer and the extruder was always getting blocked. After many hours researching the issue we discovered that you need a certain type of extruder nozzle to print using woodfill. This being an extruder nozzle that has PTFE tubing inside of it. If you have a 3d printer with a basic brass nozzle without PTFE tubing inside it, there is a higher risk of blockages. This is worth checking out before you try and 3d print with this material. All the main 3d printers have been tested and approved for use with woodfill. These include, makerbot ultimaker and beethefirst.
Examples of 3d printing with Woodfill
We 3d printed this example in woodfill with great outcomes. We printed it using a makerbot replicator 2 and the printer handled the design with no problems. The layer height was 0.2mm and the time taken to 3d print was about 4.5 hours. Obviously this is for decoration purposes and its best to keep woodfill away from water.