We have been testing wire 3D printing technique because we had to create some prototypes as fast as possible.
Wire 3D printing can speed up the design process incredibly: of course the resulting prototype is just for esthetic evaluation.
We have used an FDM printer to perform the tests and came up with some considerations that might help.
- The filament will come out of the nozzle in mid-air so it must solidify quickly else it will fall down.
- set extruder fan to maximum
- print speed must be relatively low in order to give the filament time to solidify
- nozzle temperature could be slightly lower than material recommendations: for PLA we normally set nozzle temperature to 200° but you might lower the temperature to as much as when the filament starts to melt (PLA flow will be slower so if you do this you also must tweak feed rate and print speed)
- an initial horizontal wire allows better cohesion of the wires at the bottom and gives rigidity to the object (see next video)
- consider delaying the transition from one segment to the next inserting a little circle in the node: this will create a better connection between the layers
This is an ongoing investigation and your comments and critics are absolutely welcome!
Also, if you wish to collaborate with us on this project then use the contact form.