Stereolithograph (SLA) 

We use SLA for prints that require high detail or for transparent objects. Prints can be a maximum of 177 x 177 x 228mm in size. The minimum wall thickness is 1mm, any thinner and the walls will lack the strength to support themselves. The minimum detail which SLA will capture is 0.3mm.

Materials

Casting Resin - FireCast resin is designed specifically for investment casting, including for jewelry and parts. Prints burn out clean with little to no ash. There is little thermal expansion during the heating phase. Shrinkage is minimal from printing and post-curing until burnout. 

ABS Like - This resin replicates the properties of ABS. ABS is a common material used in FDM Printing but using this resin with SLA captures far more detail and provides a higher quality finish than FDM allows.

Clear Resin - Great for prints which require a transparent finish. Whilst not completely clear this resin is about as close to clear as 3D Printing allows with todays technology.

Technology

Stereolithography is used to build your design with this material. Starting from a 3D model, a model is built by cutting it into thin layers via specialized software. A support structure is created, where needed, in order to deal with overhangs and cavities.

The process takes place in a large tank, and begins when a layer of liquid polymer is spread over a platform. This machine then uses a computer controlled laser to draw the first layer onto the surface of a liquid polymer, which hardens where struck by the laser. The model is then lowered and the next layer is then drawn directly on top of the previous one. This is repeated until the model is finished. In this way, layer by layer, an object is “drawn” in the liquid by the beam, with the layers being consolidated throughout the process.

When the object is complete, it is raised out of the tank via the supporting platform – much like a submarine rising to the surface of the water – with the excess liquid flowing away. The supports are removed manually after the model is taken from the machine.