Using Co-Part Assemblies and Continuous Fibers to Print Stronger Parts
When it comes to the strength of parts, choosing the right 3D printers and materials makes all the difference. While many 3D printers can print common plastics such as PLA, ABS, and Nylon, the resulting parts are not suitable for many industrial uses that demand qualities such as strength, stiffness, heat and chemical resistance, plus durability.
While a number of 3D printers can print in stronger carbon fiber, Markforged 3D printers in particular can achieve even greater strength improvements. Markforged composite printers combine a base material discontinuously reinforced with carbon fiber (Onyx) with reinforcing continuous fibers laid through the part.
Continuous Fiber Reinforcement (CFR) is a proprietary process that allows Markforged printers to produce impressively strong composite parts. Reinforcing fiber materials include Carbon Fiber, Fiberglass, HSHT (High-Strength High-Temperature) Fiberglass, and Kevlar®.
When designing co-parts, you also need to make a trade off between print time, support material usage, and some other factors. The best strategy that I’ve found is to arrange the co-parts such that applied load attempts to pull one part through the other.