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We have a 3D ceramics printer in our school, but since the access to it is a bit limited, I want to know as much theoretical stuff so I can learn more from each test.

We load the clay inside the printer tube, and it's just like the clay we use for pottery (except softer for the machine) - so we let it dry and fire it like any other piece. It does not use ceramic-loaded plastic filament for burn-out and kiln sintering.

  • Any tips for using the printer?
  • Points to consider while building the model?
  • Any good resource to learn more about it?

I don't remember the specific model, but it's a fairly simple printer, and I'm mostly looking for general tips

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    $\begingroup$ It is a commercial paste extruder 3D printer? Not a home made affair? Not to be crass, but is there a manual you could read? It’s a pretty niche machine, and expertise from fdm 3D printing may not cross over, other than the motion system. Not even sure if you can use the same slicing programs. $\endgroup$ Jul 30 at 18:51
  • $\begingroup$ "I don't remember the specific model"... If you could take a look and add the make and model, that would probably be very useful. Apart from that, this seems to be a bit of an open-ended question. $\endgroup$
    – Greenonline
    Aug 2 at 5:13
  • $\begingroup$ @Greenonline That's what I was aiming for, I'm looking for mostly general advices and that's why I haven't thought the model is so important $\endgroup$ Aug 4 at 5:32
  • $\begingroup$ @ChinchillaWafers Thanks, I understand now it's very different. I'll try to update the question a bit more $\endgroup$ Aug 4 at 5:33
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    $\begingroup$ But that isn't how Stack Exchange works, unfortunately. How would you accept an answer if there isn't a definitive issue to be solved..? IMHO, I think that this question should be closed due to "lack of focus" on any one specific issue that you have with the printer. That said, I hope that you get some good tips posted. Good luck. $\endgroup$
    – Greenonline
    Aug 4 at 7:46
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Some 3D printing basics to look into are layer height and what angle you can build unsupported (and how high since pottery can't take tension like plastic and would likely separate from a base from weight of an overhang).

Beyond that, look into pottery basics. How will your trapped air escape? This should affect the slicing algorithms, and how fat a block you can build without cracking. How will you minimize trapped air between material the printer lays? Will the shape promote uneven heating (consider the flow of hot air and heat flowing from where it makes contact), and what can you do to avoid cracking from that?

Ponder these before you try it out. Look at the concepts separately and consider the interactions. Look at some pictures online and ask why they chose to build that part and in that particular way.

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  • $\begingroup$ Understanding how material properties and the printer's movement physics interact with part shape is critical to quality in 3d printing. Even with a good slicer, small changes to part shape that can be insignificant for functionality and looks can drastically change quality and part strength. $\endgroup$
    – user10489
    Aug 2 at 2:57
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks, I'll think about it :) $\endgroup$ Aug 5 at 8:37

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