ABS is a very strong material, but it also has some downsides. One of them, which is the necessity of having a printer with enclosure, completely discouraged me from using it, as it would be a waste of money. This is quite sad, because I cannot make prints that will be able to withstand a large load of tension without breaking.

Is there any way to print ABS without any enclosure? Maybe there are several types of this material and some are easier to print?

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    $\begingroup$ There are all sorts of materials you can print with properties similar to subsets of ABS's properties, without all the difficulties in printing and nasty fumes. PETG, nylon, pc, hips, asa, even delrin, ... $\endgroup$ Jun 25, 2019 at 8:41
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    $\begingroup$ @R.. Yes, I know about e.g about PETG and I use it, but I was told that printing nylon, carbon fiber etc. requires much more skill than I have as a beginner. But yes, I think I should give HIPS, ASA a try $\endgroup$
    – StLuke5
    Jun 25, 2019 at 9:20
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    $\begingroup$ My understanding of ASA is that it's basically superior to ABS in every way but cost, and easier to print. $\endgroup$ Jun 25, 2019 at 9:30
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    $\begingroup$ As R states above, no enclosure and/or filtering and draft free rooms sound like a perfect way to have a room full of toxic fumes. Sounds dangerous to me. $\endgroup$
    – Greenonline
    Jun 29, 2019 at 5:24

2 Answers 2


There is no requirement for an enclosure when printing ABS. Like many things in FDM, there are improvements to be made, but there is a scale of what is possible.

A heated bed is much more necessary (for similar reasons, the thermal expansion is significant and without a heated bed you have very high risk of warping).

An enclosure is important for high quality, large ABS prints. Otherwise, a warm location which is free of drafts will be fine, particularly for parts which are only a few cm high.

If you're not using an enclosure, the part cooling fan should probably not be used to print ABS. You should also be aware that ABS tends to generate more noticeable fumes than PLA (although this varies with product, and how sensitive you are).


I print ABS in my basement in an unenclosed Prusa3D i3m3s, just as I print other filaments. Perhaps an enclosure would be helpful, but I don't have problems as it is. Your experience may vary.

Before that I printed ABS on a large home-brew delta machine. No problems related to lack of enclosure.

Before that I printed ABS on a Thing-o-Matic, also with no problems.

I'm not saying that every print was perfect, but in the first two (chronologically) cases, the enclosure was not the largest contributor to print artifacts.


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