I don’t mean to scare you but your first couple of 3D printing pens are likely to break down or leave you with a bad experience. Don’t be surprised if you end up buying several 3D pens.
Want to understand why?
Because 3D Pens are very sensitive to overheating among other mechanical issues. poor use or workmanship and maybe a poor choice of a 3D pen can mess you up.
The good news is you don’t have to go through all these bad experiences. There is always an opportunity to learn.
Read on as I guide you on how to use a 3D printing pen correctly.
What is a 3D Printing Pen?
We can simply define a 3D pen as a handheld 3D printer. This is because it also has a heating element and even an extruder, both of which are found in a typical 3D printer.
The only difference is you can manually control the 3D pen using your hand and not computer software like a 3D printer.
How Does a 3D Pen Work?
Just like most 3D printers, a 3D pen works by heating a plastic filament until it reaches its melting point. The melted plastic will then be forced out or extruded through the tip of the pen.
The melted plastic from the 3D pen is super soft and you can easily work on it to produce any design or shape. Once it is out of the pen, the plastic will start cooling and it will take the final shape that you wanted.
What Products can I Create with 3D Printer Pen?
Can I get serious products out of a 3D printer pen? As simple as it looks, a 3D pen is capable of producing an array of amazing products.
3D printing pen gives you the power to work on plastics and get the shapes that you want.
You can use the pen to decorate ordinary objects especially when it comes to adding some plastic decorations.
The pen is also an ideal solution when it comes to repairing and modifying other 3D printed products
Here are the steps to follow when using a 3D printing pen:
Step 1: Choose the right 3D Pen and filament
It always starts with having the right equipment. While there are many 3D printing pens for sale in the market, not all of them will give you the desired results. Although most of them tend to be similar, their features are not the same.
When choosing a 3D printing pen, you should consider basic aspects such as the type of filament that it uses, availability of its accessories, speed, and temperature settings, among others.
From these features, you will be able to tell whether the pen will suit your needs. It is critical to take your time and choose the best 3D printing pen as it may end up determining the quality of your work.
Step 2: Prepare Your 3D Printing Pen
Now that you have a pen, you can start the printing process. Preparing a 3D pen entails performing some basic tasks which include:
-Connecting the pen to the power source and staring it.
-Selecting the filament that you will use for printing
-Choosing the right temperature settings for printing. The temperature should be in tandem with the filament that you are using
-Insert the filament into its port on the pen
-Choose the right speed setting depending on how you would like the pen to print.
Step 3: Make 2D Sketches
Before you proceed to m print the desired object, sat by making its 2D version. This will give you a guide or a stencil of how your final 3D print should look like.
You can draw the 2D sketch on a white paper or a better alternative is to use free stencils that are on the internet.
Once your sketch is ready, cut it out the paper using a sharp object. You can smoothen the rough edges of the sketch.
Step 4: Prepare 3D Objects from the 2D Sketch
Use your 2D sketches to assemble the design of your 3D object. You will use different connectors to connect each side of the sketch until you have a 3D object in place.
Do the assembly on all the sides of the object. The assembly should be stable and you should trim the overhanging parts.
Step 5: Create 3D Objects in Space
This is the most delicate step as it entails creating the final product. It all starts by choosing an anchor point on your sketch as this is where you will start. Mark that point by making a large dot on it.
Lift the 3D pen on-air and start extruding at a low speed. Your hand should be at the same speed with the speed at which the extruder is pushing out the plastic.
When it comes to drawing straight lines, you can use a piece of plastic to align the pen. Stop extruding once you are at the end of the line. However, you should continue holding the pen still at the endpoints until the molten plastic solidifies.
Using a 3D pen to draw curved lines can be somehow technical. You should use a slow speed setting to extrude the plastic along the curved line. Keep pausing after extruding an inch of the plastic so that it can cool.
Once you have created two pieces of plastics, join them and hold the 3D pen at their junction for a few seconds. The plastics at the junction will remelt and be enjoined.
The best secret of using a 3D pen is to start with slow speeds the progress as time goes by.
You can finish up the process by trimming the overhanging parts of the plastic.
Before you sign out, check out the video below that gives a clear illustration of the basics of using a 3D printing pen.
I hope that this post has given you the push that you needed to get into 3D printing. Once you get the right 3D printing pen, you can embark on this fruitful and adventurous journey of 3D printing.
Like any other task, the journey may start with a bumpy ride but as time goes by, you will be able to master the art of using a 3D pen.
Of course, you can always consult 3D printing experts whenever you get stuck.