Produces 3D printed fumes

Machining shop

Re: 3D printing: Federal Environment Agency warns of harmful effects

Contribution from techam ┬╗Thu 12 Jul 2018, 8:27 am

I hope that the Office's report is not written in the same bumbling, ignorant and generalized way as the hot article.

Obviously, a wide variety of processes are lumped together under the collective term 3D printing.

First of all, about FLM printing, which most of you will be familiar with.

This creates neither fine dust nor nanoparticles!
The energy balance of the machines is also quite decent, with less than 300W power consumption.

Most of the plastics used are also harmless. The big exception here is ABS, which produces really toxic fumes when printing, but that's why hardly anyone uses the stuff anymore, unless a property of this plastic is absolutely required.

Recyclability: As a rule, parts are made from 100% pure plastic, which can be easily recycled using our dual system. One of the most important current printing plastics, PETG is even very similar to PET from beverage bottles.

By far the most important plastic, PLA, is not only recyclable, but also compostable (biodegradable). In theory, you could even throw it in the brown bin, but in practice you should leave it alone due to the color pigments and possible additives.

In addition, this process produces almost no waste, neither in the production of semi-finished products nor in the actual printing. Not many procedures can claim that.

The main points of criticism do not apply to this consumer process.

So where did the knowledge come from?

SLM and SLS Druck work with powders, which can definitely be viewed as fine dust. Metal powders, in particular, are very dangerous due to their skin and respiratory properties.
For reasons of cost and effort, however, these machines are predominantly used in industry.

The energy problem also applies to these devices to a limited extent, due to the use of lasers in the kW range, the power losses are of course very high. Especially since an extremely large number of peripheral devices are necessary. The energy per component is therefore quite high, especially since the construction times are still quite long.

But conventional 15-30KW milling machines are no energy-saving miracles either, whereby the electricity balance per component is probably even better.

In addition, with SLM and SLS printing with a powder bath, a considerable amount of waste is generated, as the excess powder can only be recycled to about 30-50%.

We come to SLA printing, which works with UV-curable resins. These are actually very dangerous and should be treated with extreme caution, the processing can theoretically produce the finest aerosols of these liquids and the energy balance is not ideal due to the lasers used.

However, this scaremongering in the article is completely inappropriate.


MfG Christian
Lathe: EBK 450 with 550W FU conversion
CNC milling machine: Sorotec AL-Line 1105 with 2.2kW
Milling machine: Paulimot F207V
Drilling machine: AEG DTBM 10
Saw: FLEX SBG 4910
Welding machine: Stahlwerk TIG 200 pulse AC / DC + plasma
3D printer: fullmetal P3 Steel