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Working with 3d printed parts

Kurt Johnson

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I have recently ordered a kit of a 1/24 scale Ford-Cosworth engine dfv Lotus 49 engine. I have never worked with 3d printed parts before. I have no idea about the properties of these parts and how to work with them. I haven’t figured out the correct combination  

of words to search this to any satisfaction. Can anyone point me in the correct direction? Thanks in advance.



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The parts will most likely be a bit more flexible than normal resin parts (more like plastic) but also a bit more brittle than plastic.

Check the parts for any remaining support structures and any support pin locations (look like dimples) and sand them down. If there are supports; be careful to remove them using snips or small saws to not put pressure on delicate parts.

Painting and assembly is like normal resin parts (CA or other glue as plastic glue will not hold)

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  • 4 weeks later...

It depends heavily on what resin has been used to print the parts.  Some 3D resins come out like ABS plastic, but the high detail ones I've used are very brittle. Drilling thin walled holes can be a thrilling and daring experience and cutting parts with a scalpel can result in breaks additional to the one you were intending.


Just test some parts and see. The resins also tend to become pliable at relatively low temps. 70-80°C.


I use CA glue and epoxy for joining. 

  • Haha 1
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As mentioned brittle (but possibly less brittle than cast resin), I find clear printed resin to be particularly brittle.

It sands well but you should take precautions as like all resin it's potentially toxic if inhaled (I wet sand to keep the dust down).


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