PETG Filament Print Settings

PETG Filament Print Settings

Most people started 3D printing with PLA, a fantastic material for experimenting and learning the basics of 3D printing. PLA remains the default choice for projects that don't require specific properties like heat resistance or impact resistance. However, as individuals progress in their 3D printing journey, the next common material they explore is PETG.

Today we're delving into how to expertly print PETG. We will encompass the material itself, PETG prints applications, reasons for choosing to 3D print with PETG, and the specific hardware and slicer requirements associated with PETG printing.

What is PETG Filament?

PETG, Polyethylene Terephthalate Glycol, serves as a great material with unique properties, making it ideal for functional applications where PLA may fall short. While PETG is less demanding than materials such as nylon or polycarbonate.

PETG differs significantly from PLA in its thickness, demanding a slower printing pace and higher temperatures. To facilitate successful PETG printing, certain settings need adjustment.

Is PETG Food-Safe?

PETG exhibits excellent impact resistance, chemical resistance, and is entirely recyclable, adn is widely used in manufacturing, frequently employed in the medical industry and popular for food packaging. While PETG is generally considered food-safe in traditional manufacturing, this designation does not directly carry over to 3D printing. The layered structure of 3D prints provides a potential avenue for bacteria entrapment. 

The speaker discusses the impact resistance of common water bottles, which are typically made of PET (polyethylene terephthalate). PET-G, a variant of PET without glycol, is mentioned, and the speaker refers to an article on PET and PET-G for a deeper understanding of their chemical properties. PET and PET-G filaments are available for 3D printing, with PET-G being more common and popular due to its increased impact resistance.

Configuraciones de impresión para filamento PETG Propiedades mecánicas del filamento PETG
Nozzle Temperature 210 -235 ºC Tensile Modulus 3000 MPa
Bed Temperature 50 -80 ºC Tensile Yield Stress 53 MPa
Print Speed 30-70 mm/s Elongation at Yield 4%
Chamber Temperature 50-70 °C Tensile Strength 53 MPa
Cooling Fan 0-100% Elongation at Stress 4%
Stress at Break 19 MPa
Propiedades térmicas del filamento PETG Nominal Elongation at Break 31%
Shore Hardness 70 Flexural Modulus 2040 MPa
Vicat Softening Temperature 78ºC Flexural Stress 171 MPa
Glass Transition Temperature 80ºC Deflection at Flexural Strength 8.6 mm
PETG Density 1.27 g/𝑐𝑚3 Notched Izod Impact Strength 4.5kJ/𝑚2
Bulk Density 0.73 g/𝑐𝑚3 Unnotched Izod Impact Strength No Break
Intrinsic Viscosity 0.80 dl/g
Water Absorption 0.12%

Advantages of Printing with PETG

Printing with PETG offers several advantages, making it a popular choice for 3D printing applications, like adding impact resistance, flexibility, heat resistance, UV resistance, and chemical resistance. Additionally, PET-G is more translucent than PLA, as observed in raw pellet form. 

  1. Durability: PETG is known for its excellent durability and toughness, making it suitable for functional parts and prototypes that require strength and resilience. It can withstand impacts and is less prone to breaking or cracking compared to more brittle materials like PLA.

  2. Chemical Resistance: PETG is resistant to many chemicals, including acids, alkalis, and solvents. This property makes it suitable for applications where the printed parts may come into contact with various substances.

  3. Heat Resistance: PETG has a higher melting point compared to PLA, making it more heat resistant. It can withstand temperatures up to around 70-80°C without deforming, which is higher than what PLA can handle.

  4. Flexibility: While not as flexible as TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane), PETG has a degree of flexibility that allows it to bend without breaking. This property makes it suitable for applications where some level of flexibility is desired.

  5. Transparency and Clarity: PETG is transparent and has excellent optical properties, allowing for the creation of clear or translucent parts. This makes it suitable for applications such as light diffusers, signage, and display cases.

  6. Ease of Printing: PETG is relatively easy to print compared to some other materials like ABS. It has less warping and better bed adhesion, making it more forgiving for novice users or printers without a heated enclosure.

  7. Low Odor: PETG typically emits less odor during printing compared to ABS, making it more pleasant to work with, especially in indoor or poorly ventilated spaces.

  8. Recyclability: PETG is a recyclable material, which aligns with sustainability goals. It can be recycled and used to create new filament or other PETG products.

PETG Printing Temperature

The optimal printing temperature for PETG filament can vary depending on the specific brand and composition of the filament, as well as your 3D printer's hotend. However, a general range for printing PETG is typically around 230°C to 250°C for the extruder (hotend) temperature. It's best to start at the lower end of this range and adjust based on the results you observe during printing.

Bed Temperature

Build plate temperature around 70°C offers good adhesion, and caution is advised when going higher to avoid excessive binding. PETG usually adheres well to a heated bed. Some users also use adhesive materials like painter's tape, PEI sheets, or glue sticks to improve bed adhesion.

PETG Print Speed

Speed settings require careful consideration due to PETG's thickness. PETG prints best at moderate speeds. Starting with a speed of around 30mm/s to 60mm/s for printing and around 60mm/s to 100mm/s for travel moves is a good starting point. Top and bottom speed settings influence adhesion, and a slower initial layer speed ensures proper leveling and adhesion.

PETG Fan Speed

PETG is less prone to warping compared to ABS, but it's still important to have some cooling to prevent overheating and stringing. Typically, around 40% - 50% fan speed depending on your printer and the specific filament.

Additional parameters include acceleration control and jerk settings, which are advised to be conservative. PETG generally requires less retraction than PLA but more than ABS. A retraction distance of around 1-4mm and a retraction speed of 30-60mm/s are common settings.

Build Plate Adhesion

For build plate adhesion, using a skirt allows for real-time adjustments to nozzle height. It's a small investment of filament for valuable insights into your PETG settings.

Experimenting with different settings and fine-tuning your 3D printer to work harmoniously with PETG filament is key to producing successful prints. If you encounter any challenges along the way, don't hesitate to adjust settings and seek advice from the 3D printing community to enhance your printing experience with PETG filament.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Q1: Can I use the same print settings for PETG as I do for PLA filament?

A1: When transitioning from printing with PLA to PETG filament, adjustments to print settings are necessary due to the distinct properties of each material. While PLA typically operates well within a temperature range of 190°C to 220°C, PETG requires higher extruder temperatures, typically falling between 230°C to 250°C. Additionally, PETG often benefits from a heated bed, with recommended temperatures ranging from 70°C to 80°C, unlike PLA, which may not require heating or can suffice with lower bed temperatures. Unlike PLA, PETG is less sensitive to cooling, necessitating reduced or no part cooling to prevent warping and ensure optimal layer adhesion. PETG generally prints best at slower speeds compared to PLA, with recommended speeds of around 30mm/s to 60mm/s. While PLA may require retraction settings of around 1mm to 3mm, PETG typically demands less retraction, often within the range of 0.5mm to 2mm. Considering these differences and conducting test prints is crucial for optimizing settings when transitioning to printing with PETG filament.

Q2: How can I prevent warping when printing with PETG filament?

  • Set heated bed temperatures typically between 70°C to 80°C for PETG printing.
  • Additionally, applying adhesion aids such as glue stick, hairspray, or specialized bed coatings like PEI or PEO can improve adhesion.
  • Ensuring the bed is properly leveled is also important to achieve uniform adhesion across the print surface.
  • Printing PETG within an enclosure can help maintain a stable ambient temperature, reducing the likelihood of warping due to uneven cooling.
  • PETG is less sensitive to cooling compared to materials like PLA, so reducing or turning off part cooling fans during printing can help minimize temperature differentials and reduce the chances of warping.
  • Adjusting print speed,typically around 30mm/s to 60mm/s may also help mitigate warping issues.
  • Finally, printing with a brim or raft can provide additional adhesion and stability to the print, especially for larger or more complex parts. By implementing these strategies and fine-tuning print settings, you can minimize the risk of warping when printing with PETG filament.

Q3: Can Ender 3 print PETG?

Yes, the Creality Ender 3 is capable of printing PETG filament. Remember to experiment with print settings and perform calibration prints to fine-tune them for your specific printer and PETG filament. With the right adjustments, the Creality Ender 3 should be able to produce high-quality prints with PETG filament.

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