College of Engineering |

DECS

Fill

When printing a solid object, such as a cube on the MakerBot, you can replace the solid inner structure with a honey-combed pattern fill that can vary in size, depending on how strong the object needs to be. This reduces materials used, cost of the object and build time. The fill is needed when printing the top layer of the object becasue it gives the layers something to rest on and adhere to.

An object with a small honey-comb fill pattern
An object with a medium size honey-comb fill pattern
An image with a large honey-comb fill pattern
 
Images of the different fill sizes. Fill size is measured in percentage; the higher the percentage, the smaller the honey-comb fill pattern.

Supports

MakerBot is an extruder and builds layers upon layers. Sometimes there are gaps or overhangs in an object's design that do not provide a base for the MakerBot to build upon. Supports are automatically added to fill these gaps. These are removed after the object is completed (unlike the fill that is encased in the object), but can leave an uneven surface on the part. If a smooth surface is needed, you may need to reconsider the design of your object or contact the DECS Support Office for assistance with your build.

Image of a support structure
Image of a support structure
A surface without supports
 
Images of the support structures. The non-solid part of the build is removed after the object has finished printing. The red image on the right shows what the surface looks like after the supports are removed.

Disks

If the object spans the majority of the length of the build bed, it is possible that the outer edges may warp. To reduce warping, disks can be added to the corners of an object to help stabilize it. These disks are easily removed after the object is completed.

 

Contact the DECS Support Office, 1325 Engineering Building, 353-8891, support@egr.msu.edu, at any point in your build process with questions or assistance in designing your object. There are displays of each type of support available in the Support Office.