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IndustryArena Forum > Additive Manufacturing / 3D Printers and 3D Scanners > General 3D Printer Discussion > anyone make an caulk 3d printer? (silicone caulk with sped up cure using water)
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  1. #1
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    anyone make an caulk 3d printer? (silicone caulk with sped up cure using water)

    I have it in my head that a 3d printer could be made out of silicone caulk using an ultrasonic humidifier to supply the water. basically that is it... there is a humidifier constantly covering the print area with mist and an extruder constantly pressing thin layers of silicone together (layers with a bit of water in between them).

    maybe silicone diluted with mineral spirits will get better flow characteristics out of a nozzle and better penetration from the water mist? I want to 3d print "soft actuators" but also tough materials like metal.

  2. #2
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    Re: anyone make an caulk 3d printer? (silicone caulk with sped up cure using water)

    Interesting idea. What is the cure time of silicone caulk with a water mist? A typical 3D printer can print another layer after a very short cure time, something like 1 second. It would take forever to print something if you have a 1 minute cure time.

    Steve

  3. #3
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    Re: anyone make an caulk 3d printer? (silicone caulk with sped up cure using water)

    Wouldn't the water act as a release, preventing the layers from adhering to each other? There are syringe-type printers which work with paste-consistency materials like clay and caulk, but I've never heard of them using water. How are you planning to print in metal?
    Andrew Werby
    Website

  4. #4
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    Re: anyone make an caulk 3d printer? (silicone caulk with sped up cure using water)

    @steve323 - silicone in water will form a skin in seconds and after a minute the skin can be thick. If silicone is actively mixed with some water it turns white and cures hard in minutes. Since the layers are thin and the water droplets are tiny there may not be a long delay between layers the biggest problem is supporting a flexible model (lucky its relatively cheap). FYI the silicone I am thinking about is "GE Silicone I*"

    @awerby - I don't think the water will act as a release agent. IMO small amounts will be absorbed quickly especially under pressure of a new layer being printed. Some low temperature alloys (some melt with just body heat) could be printed but I was thinking about casting in silicone molds.

    I wonder if the mist would cause small amounts of cured silicone to build up on the nozzle eventually blocking the flow

  5. #5
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    Re: anyone make an caulk 3d printer? (silicone caulk with sped up cure using water)

    Get a tube of silicone caulk and squirt some out. Dump some water on it, and then try to add more caulk. See how well it sticks. Then let us know, okay?
    Andrew Werby
    Website

  6. #6
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    Re: anyone make an caulk 3d printer? (silicone caulk with sped up cure using water)

    I don't have any silicone caulk handy... Just a thing to think about I guess but printing with flexible material would be tricky

  7. #7
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    Re: anyone make an caulk 3d printer? (silicone caulk with sped up cure using water)

    Does it have to be silicon? What about using ninja flex filament?

    Sent from my SM-T813 using Tapatalk

  8. #8
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    Re: anyone make an caulk 3d printer? (silicone caulk with sped up cure using water)

    Quote Originally Posted by underthetire View Post
    Does it have to be silicon? What about using ninja flex filament?

    Sent from my SM-T813 using Tapatalk
    Or if you really feel like trying different materials, how about using a hot glue gun. It hardens much quicker than silicone. There are many types of hot glue. Some are more flexible than the standard "craft" type.

  9. #9
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    underthetire,

    Please send me an email. I've been trying to get in touch with you.
    I saw that you worked at Yamezen (from another post) and am wondering
    if you have worked on a Brother TC-22A?

    Email: toolnuts@hotmail.com

    Regards,

    Paul Hoffman
    Last edited by toolnuts; 08-21-2018 at 06:08 PM.

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