Let’s start with some questions:
- Has your 3D printing journey started a long time ago?
- Are you looking for a filament different from PLA but still easy to use?
- PET-G causes too much stringing while ABS is shrinking too much?
- Do you need a material with better technical parameters such as impact strength and thermal resistance?
- Do you want prints that are easy to post-process and can be painted?
If you answered “yes” to any of the questions above, you may find our offer interesting. What would you say to BioCREATE – biodegradable and with thermal resistance comparable to ABS? 3D printing with it is easy, as long as you use the right printing parameters (more on this topic in section: ‘How to print BioCREATE?’).
What is BioCREATE made of?
The ingredients from which it is made are approved for contact with food. Although you need to keep in mind, that the responsibility of certificating a finished product for food contact applications, lies with the manufacturer of the aforementioned finished product.
The raw material, from which we make BioCREATE is a biodegradable polymer, which means that it is obtained from renewable resources. Moreover, it is possible to compost this polymer within 12 weeks, under strictly defined conditions (e.g. temperature and humidity as well as access to oxygen). As a result, a part made of BioCREATE is being decomposed to carbon dioxide and ammonium compounds. Heating up of the composted prism is a side effect of that process.
Materials based on renewable resources are created to protect fossil resources and close the carbon dioxide cycles. Renewable raw materials used for the production of biomaterials absorb carbon dioxide in the growth phase and bind it beyond the use phase. If the products biodegrade or are converted into energy at the end of their life cycle, only as much carbon dioxide is released as the plants have previously absorbed.
How to print BioCREATE?
|Printing temperature [degrees Celsius]||210 - 230|
|Bed temperature [degrees Celsius]||50 - 75|
|Print speed [mm/s]||20 - 80|
|Retraction amount [mm]||Bowden: 5-12; Direct: 0,8-3|
|Retraction speed [mm/s]||Bowden: 45; Direct: 50-60|
|Fan [%]||50 – 100 (starting from the 2nd layer)|
|Compatible bed surfaces||glass, PEI, toughened glass|
BioCREATE adheres well to various print bed surfaces. On a glass bed, you only need it to be clean. To achieve this, you can swipe it with a cloth soaked in IPA (isopropyl alcohol) or wash it with water and dish soap. Remember to recalibrate the bed before printing. With PEI sheets, we recommend the use of an adhesive agent. When degreasing smooth PEI sheet, it is best to use IPA. Acetone can be used occasionally, for surface renewal. Using it too often will weaken the PEI sheet by making it more and more brittle. Do not use acetone for degreasing textured PEI sheet.
T-Rex skull printed from BioCREATE. Photos and prints author: Arkadiusz Jackowski – Member of R&D ROSA 3D.
Here’s a checklist of actions that can improve print-to-bed adhesion:
- clean/degrease the print bed;
- level the bed, taking the layer height and nozzle diameter into consideration;
- lower the first layer print speed/increase the extrusion temperature;
- increase the print bed temperature, print in enclosure to stabilize the temperature and prevent drafts;
- use an adhesive agent.
BioCREATE can show shrinkage on bigger prints (meaning the ones that have a large contact surface with the bed). To prevent this, try to minimize the chances of a draft occurring. The easiest case is when you have an enclosed printer. If you don’t, at least close the door and windows in the room for the print duration. Remember to turn off the print cooling fan for the first layers.
According to the Testers from ROSA3D R&D Program, BioCREATE printouts absorb paint very well. One of them said, that there’s no need for using undercoat paint in order to achieve good and lasting coverage of the print surface with acrylic paint. Sanding, on the other hand, generates a small amount of dust and is relatively difficult. It is better to use a metal file than sandpaper for smoothing BioCREATE prints. Removing support structures doesn’t require special tools nor leave much of a trace.
Two pictures of a 3D printed BioCREATE pumpkin – before removing supports and after painting. Photos and prints by Piotr Styczyński – Member of R&D ROSA 3D.
Taking all of the mentioned BioCREATE properties into consideration, we can think of many different applications for this filament. Due to its non-problematic printing and painting, we would recommend it for models intended to be covered with paint. That could be miniature sculptures, superhero figurines or board games elements. Cosplayers will surely appreciate the ease of covering BioCREATE with paint. This material’s thermal properties allow it to be an alternative for ABS.
As you can see in the pictures, detailed models are not a challenge for BioCREATE filament.
Below, there’s a table with BioCREATE ‘s technical parameters. Further details, such as standards for determining these parameters, can be found in TDS on our website. The material has high values of VICAT softening point and tensile modulus.
|Softening point [degrees Celsius]||Vicat: 114|
|Elastic modulus [MPa]||3100 (ISO 527, 1mm/min)|
|Tensile strength [MPa]||26 (ISO 527, 5mm/min)|
Thermal resistance has been also tested on prototype coffee cups made for Formnext 2019. We’ve repeatedly poured hot coffee in them, then washed them in a dishwasher with no visible detriment to the integrity of the printouts.