Silicone 3D Printing

3D-printed silicone comes in a variety of shore-A hardnesses, is biocompatible, and functional in a range of temperatures

translucent white silicone parts

Source: Spectroplast


True silicone is 100% pure silicone that is available in different shore-A hardness as detailed below. The material is suitable to produce both functional prototypes and end-use products, which can be used in a temperature range of -30
°C to +180°C (-22°F to +356°F).

The material shows high resistance to harsh environments conditions, various acids, bases and nonpolar solvents. Silicone parts are water repellent, insulating, and have a high gas permeability.

Silicone has passed the following tests for biocompatibility: ISO DIN EN 10993-05 (tests for in vitro cytotoxicity) and ISO DIN EN 10993-10 (tests for irritation and skin sensitization).

The material is offered in two colors:

  • Translucent white: Available in all durometers
  • Black: Available for 60A

Primary benefits include:​

  • high temperature and wear resistance
  • elasticity and high reproducibility after deformation or stress
  • a range of durometers (20A to 60A)

Silicone 3D Printing Properties

Property Test Method Value
Shore-A Hardness ISO 7619-1 20 35 50 60
Density ISO 1183-1 A 0.038 lb/in3 0.039  lb/in3 0.040  lb/in3 0.041  lb/in3
Tensile Strength ISO 37 Type 4 711 psi 798 psi 1,052 psi 1,233 psi
Elongation at Break ISO 37 Type 4 >1,000% 650% 530% 360%
Tear Strength ASTM D624 Type C 33 lbf/in. 57 lbf/in. 63 lbf/in. 97 lbf/in.
Rebound Resilience ISO 4662 >80% >80% >80% >80%
Compression Set DIN ISO 815-1 Type B <25% <20% <20% <20%

 

Property Test Method Value
Shore-A Hardness ISO 7619-1 20 35 50 60
Density ISO 1183-1 A 1.05 g/cm3 1.08 g/cm3 1.11 g/cm3 1.13 g/cm3
Tensile Strength ISO 37 Type 4 4.9 N/mm2 5.5 N/mm2 7.25 N/mm2 8.5 N/mm2
Elongation at Break ISO 37 Type 4 >1,000% 650% 530% 360%
Tear Strength ASTM D624 Type C 5.8 N/mm 10 N/mm 11 N/mm 17 N/mm
Rebound Resilience ISO 4662 >80% >80% >80% >80%
Compression Set DIN ISO 815-1 Type B <25% <20% <20% <20%

 


True Silicone Comparison to Common Elastomers

true silicone material comparison
Soft (30-35A) material comparison.

true silicone material comparison
Harder (60-70A) material comparison.

Design Considerations

Our basic guidelines and design considerations for 3D-printed silicone will help ensure a manufacturable part and overall quality.

  US Metric
Maximum Part Size 4.7 in x 2.8 in. x 3.9 in. 119.38mm x 71.12mm x 99.06mm
Minimum Feature Size X-Y Plane: 0.01 in.
Z Plane: 0.016 in.
X-Y Plane: 0.25mm
Z Plane: 0.40mm
Minimum Thickness Supported Walls: 0.012 in.
Unsupported Walls: 0.02 in.
Supported Walls: 0.30mm
Unsupported Walls: 0.50mm
Tolerances The tolerances for well-designed parts in the X / Y / Z direction are +/- 0.004 in. for first inch plus 0.1% of nominal length The tolerances for well-designed parts in the X / Y / Z direction are +/- 0.1mm for first inch plus 0.1% of nominal length

Applications for 3D-Printed Silicone

True silicone is well-suited for small prototyping runs before investing in tooling for injection molding or manufacturing silicone parts with complex, organic geometries. Typical parts include:

  • Custom, patient-, or customer-specific parts
  • Seals, gaskets, and grommets
  • Keypads and buttons
  • Surgical models
  • Dental liners
  • Wearables

white silicone 3d printed parts
Source: Spectroplast


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