3
$\begingroup$

What kind of 3D printer (filament vs resin) and what kind of filament is recommended for individual LED diffusing?

The issue is that I am using a WS2812B-2020 LEDs (2mm x 2mm) so the size of my prints are quite tiny.

I am looking for a semi-opaque/frosted finish like on an LED strip diffuser.

For reference, I found a Youtube video which uses a regular filament printer with 0% infill, LED Mood Lamp:

$\endgroup$

2 Answers 2

3
$\begingroup$

If you want just covers - thin surfaces - then the printer choice doesn't matter. FDM with textured bed will give you neatly textured surface on the first layer (so if you print them upside-down, which would be the intuitive observation, that will be the outer surface), but in either case you can achieve the matte finish with some sandpaper.

Also, you don't even need transparent filament, just make the "diffuser surface" 1-2 layers thick and LEDs will shine through just fine, through any not-too-dark filament, if a little dim. You can even integrate the pockets in the chassis, printing everything in one go, most of chassis thick, "LED windows" 1-2 layers thin, no multiple materials, no multiple parts needed.

The case is different if you want fibre optic guides for the lights - LEDs located a good distance from where the glow is expected to appear. That requires high internal transparency and smooth surface to guide the reflections. In that case resin is vastly superior, allowing for truly transparent prints - FDM will create a bunch of imperfections at layer interface.

OTOH there is a technique - print just the small diffuser, then use heat to weld a piece of the transparent filament to the back side of it, bend the filament to shape (using heat) to fit the LED-diffuser path, then polish the end surface (where it takes the LED light in) to smooth finish. Unprocessed filament like that acts as decent optic fibres.

$\endgroup$
1
$\begingroup$

My suggestion here is that you should work with a 3D printer that operates with powdered material, even if it is expensive. You can take a look at this link, Ultrasint PP 3D Printer Powder, for some ideas.

The printing material you will use will emit a much smoother light within the LED as it is printed in very thin layers.

Cube made using the sintering technique, and the material used is PA2200

The cube in this photograph has been made using the sintering technique, and the material used is PA2200. We printed with a powder 3D printer that we use in my company.

$\endgroup$
0

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .