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Investigating the Effects of Ironing Parameters on the Dimensional Accuracy, Surface Roughness, and Hardness of FFF-Printed Thermoplastics

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-07-26, 15:50 authored by Javaid Butt, Raghunath Bhaskar, Vahaj Mohaghegh
Ironing is a useful feature for parts made by fused filament fabrication (FFF), as it can smooth out surfaces using heat and extruding a small amount of material. Like any other processing parameter for FFF, ironing also requires optimisation to ensure a smooth surface can be achieved with limited adverse effects on the other features of the printed part. Even with such a beneficial use case, ironing is still considered experimental and, therefore, this study aims to investigate its effects on dimensional accuracy, surface roughness, and the hardness of two commonly used amorphous thermoplastics, i.e., ABS (acrylonitrile butadiene styrene) and ASA (acrylonitrile styrene acrylate). An extensive comparative analysis has been provided where parts have been manufactured using a low-cost, desktop-based 3D printer, with the two materials at three different ironing line spacings (0.1 mm, 0.2 mm, 0.3 mm), three different ironing flows (10%, 20%, 30%), and three different ironing speeds (50 mm/s, 100 mm/s, 150 mm/s). The study focuses on evaluating the effects of these different ironing parameters and determining the optimal combination for bespoke product requirements. The results showed that ASA was more adversely affected by the changes in ironing parameters compared to ABS. However, the different ironing parameters were proven to improve the smoothness as well as hardness of the parts, compared to the un-ironed samples of ABS and ASA. This work provides a good comparison between two popular amorphous materials and offers ways to leverage ironing parameters to achieve dimensional accuracy, optimal surface finish, and better hardness values.

History

Refereed

  • Yes

Volume

6

Issue number

5

Page range

121

Publication title

Journal of Composites Science

ISSN

2504-477X

Publisher

MDPI

File version

  • Published version

Language

  • eng

Legacy posted date

2022-05-16

Legacy creation date

2022-05-16

Legacy Faculty/School/Department

Faculty of Science & Engineering

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