Material Evidence

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Comparing 3-D printer materials

Compiled by Shawna Kulpa

Originally published August 2017

A casting is only as good as its model, and today many models are being built by 3-D printers. However, shopping for a printer can be an overwhelming experience. Given all the technical data you need to absorb (build speeds, achievable accuracies, build envelopes) it can be easy to overlook other details—such as the materials that will actually be used to create the models. And while some machines allow only for the use of specific materials, most are open—which means that your choices are wide open as well. So how do you know which material will best meet your needs?