3D printed Carbon Fiber

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TRFfan

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Would 3d printed carbon fiber fins be as strong as CF fins cut from a plate?
 

ttabbal

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No. The CF filament just has some bits of CF mixed into the plastic. The plates are a composite material where the fabric and epoxy combine to give strength. There is no current 3D printer tech that can do this.

Frankly, I consider the CF filament to be false advertising. It's not any stronger than normal PLA, doesn't resist heat better, and doesn't even LOOK like CF fabric. It's a huge waste of money. At least the metal/wood filaments can be cleaned up to look like those things, and the metal ones add weight, which can be perfect for miniatures and such.
 

TRFfan

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No. The CF filament just has some bits of CF mixed into the plastic. The plates are a composite material where the fabric and epoxy combine to give strength. There is no current 3D printer tech that can do this.

Frankly, I consider the CF filament to be false advertising. It's not any stronger than normal PLA, doesn't resist heat better, and doesn't even LOOK like CF fabric. It's a huge waste of money. At least the metal/wood filaments can be cleaned up to look like those things, and the metal ones add weight, which can be perfect for miniatures and such.
Ok thanks.
 

eggplant

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There's also the MarkForged, which embeds continuous strands of CF or FG into parts. Still not as strong as a standard layup, but nylon filament and CF makes for some impressively strong prints.
 

nh4clo4

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No. The CF filament just has some bits of CF mixed into the plastic. The plates are a composite material where the fabric and epoxy combine to give strength. There is no current 3D printer tech that can do this.

Frankly, I consider the CF filament to be false advertising. It's not any stronger than normal PLA, doesn't resist heat better, and doesn't even LOOK like CF fabric. It's a huge waste of money. At least the metal/wood filaments can be cleaned up to look like those things, and the metal ones add weight, which can be perfect for miniatures and such.
The Markforged 3D printer can work with continuous carbon fibers. It is not an entry-level printer, but I am quite sure there are a few 3D printing outlets that have them.

https://markforged.com/materials/#carbon-fiber

It won't be cheap.
 

ttabbal

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I know about the Markforged printer. It's not nearly the same as a "real" FG/CF. I have no doubt something at least as good will happen eventually, but it doesn't exist yet.

I was trying to keep it a little simpler as when someone asks about printing in CF, they usually aren't into the hobby and just saw the CF filament somewhere. It's usually people wanting to print quadcopter frames asking about it. That's bad enough, but I wanted to make sure someone didn't print an HPR fincan and wonder why it failed. I know this is the MPR forum, but who hasn't stuffed a baby H in an MPR rocket around here? :)

3D printing tech is very cool, and can be very useful in rocketry. But we need to understand the limitations of the material and work within them.
 

TRFfan

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I know about the Markforged printer. It's not nearly the same as a "real" FG/CF. I have no doubt something at least as good will happen eventually, but it doesn't exist yet.

I was trying to keep it a little simpler as when someone asks about printing in CF, they usually aren't into the hobby and just saw the CF filament somewhere. It's usually people wanting to print quadcopter frames asking about it. That's bad enough, but I wanted to make sure someone didn't print an HPR fincan and wonder why it failed. I know this is the MPR forum, but who hasn't stuffed a baby H in an MPR rocket around here? :)

3D printing tech is very cool, and can be very useful in rocketry. But we need to understand the limitations of the material and work within them.
Yes, I was going along on the internet and saw the markforged printer, thats why i asked this question....anyway, Im building a 24 mm MD and was wondering if 3d printed fins would be strong enough to hold up against the stresses.
 

ttabbal

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Unless it's a crazy fast 24mm motor, I would expect ABS to hold up fine so long as you make them thick enough. However, as MD builds are usually going for altitude, you would probably be better served with some thin FG/CF plate. Lighter, stronger, less likely to flutter.

I would like to see 3D printing used more in the hobby, and plan to contribute designs and such as I go. I'm mostly working with parts that won't be subject to the stresses a fin would see though. It would be an interesting experiment to print a few fincans and test them with increasing motor sizes to determine how they hold up. It would need to be done with some distance though, as you have to expect at some point you're going to go skywriting.
 

dr wogz

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Yes, I was going along on the internet and saw the markforged printer, thats why i asked this question....anyway, Im building a 24 mm MD and was wondering if 3d printed fins would be strong enough to hold up against the stresses.
While they may be strong enough, I seriously doubt they would be the lightest option for the strength / structure / purpose.. Laminating a balsa fin or a fin cut from a supermarket foam meat tray would be much lighter, and probably just as strong if not more so than a 3D printed part...
 

TRFfan

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TRFfan

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How much will they charge you for what you need?
It's still a technology in process, they're working on printing actual carbon fiber (with enough strength as normal CF). Maybe in a couple years the technology will have progressed enough for rocketeers to use it but they're still working on it.
 
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