Accellerated Support Printing

Had an idea to make some prints go faster, when printing at the finer layer-heights. There is really no need for the support structure to be printed at the same layer thickness as the actual part, as such the base and supports can be printed at the faster 0.1mm until just before the lowest feature of the part begins, at which point the printer would switch to the selected thickness. This could result in a significant time savings, especially for small parts at 0.025mm, where printing the base often takes as long or longer than the part itself.

A rough example based on the estimated time in PreForm, and a simple small object I designed.

Layer Height    Object [No Support]    Object+Support    Support Time     Estimated, using fast support    Savings

0.1                   34min                          58min                   24min                 —                                                —

0.05                 69min                          117min                 48min                 93min                                          24min

0.025               142min                         245min                103min               166min                                        79min

[Hopefully the table above doesn’t get munged]

Something tells me they are already working on this for the next software release. I heard they will show new software features during the MakerFaire.

If they are not working on this, then they should. They should also give us a way of controlling the exposure times, etc, so that we can try some third party resins.