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3D Printing Material Guide

Overview of Resins, Plastics & Metals

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3D Printing Material Guide

Overview of Resins, Plastics & Metals

Watch Video

All Industrial 3D Printing Materials Explained

Forge Labs offers a number of  end-use industrial resins, thermoplastics and metals that are most commonly used in industrial additive manufacturing and 3D Printing. This guide is designed to assist you to select the best material for your next project or improve the quality of your prints with advice from our experts.

There are 3 primary types of materials used in Industrial 3D Printing across 6 unique technologies:

Thermoplastics

Thermoplastics are the most commonly used plastics, capable of going through multiple cycles of melting and reformation into a solid structure. This makes the material popular for high throughput, industrial 3D Printing technologies such as Selective Laser SinteringMulti-Jet Fusion & Fused Deposition Modeling. Parts built using these technologies can be either extruded or selectively sintered into a solid structure. The process is also reversible allowing plastic parts to be melted down and recycled. Parts tend to be highly durable and suitable for end-use applications in demanding environments.

Thermosetting Liquid Resin

Thermosetting resins are used in 3D Printing technologies such as Stereolithography, PolyJet Matrix and Digital Light Processing. Parts are formed using a curing process such as UV light to solidify layers and achieve ultra-crisp fine details with injection molded-like surface finishes. Unlike thermoplastics, these resins decompose when heated rather than melt and cannot return back to its original form. They also tend to be less functional and more brittle than thermoplastics.

Metals

Metals are produced using industrial a industrial laser melting process known as Direct Metal Laser Sintering. Parts are formed using a high-powered laser to fuse fine particles of alloy together to form a solid structure. These metal parts share are isotropic and possess similar mechanical properties to machined parts and are well suited for demanding, end-use applications including automotive and aerospace industries.

Use the table below to to sort materials based on their mechanical properties & characteristics. Once you have selected a material, click for more details, data sheets & application information. If you need help selecting a material, please don't hesitate to contact us!

All Industrial 3D Printing Materials Explained

Forge Labs offers a number of  end-use industrial resins, thermoplastics and metals that are most commonly used in industrial additive manufacturing and 3D Printing. This guide is designed to assist you to select the best material for your next project or improve the quality of your prints with advice from our experts.

There are 3 primary types of materials used in Industrial 3D Printing across 6 unique technologies:

Thermoplastics

Thermoplastics are the most commonly used plastics, capable of going through multiple cycles of melting and reformation into a solid structure. This makes the material popular for high throughput, industrial 3D Printing technologies such as Selective Laser SinteringMulti-Jet Fusion & Fused Deposition Modeling. Parts built using these technologies can be either extruded or selectively sintered into a solid structure. The process is also reversible allowing plastic parts to be melted down and recycled. Parts tend to be highly durable and suitable for end-use applications in demanding environments.

Thermosetting Liquid Resin

Thermosetting resins are used in 3D Printing technologies such as Stereolithography, PolyJet Matrix and Digital Light Processing. Parts are formed using a curing process such as UV light to solidify layers and achieve ultra-crisp fine details with injection molded-like surface finishes. Unlike thermoplastics, these resins decompose when heated rather than melt and cannot return back to its original form. They also tend to be less functional and more brittle than thermoplastics.

Metals

Metals are produced using industrial a industrial laser melting process known as Direct Metal Laser Sintering. Parts are formed using a high-powered laser to fuse fine particles of alloy together to form a solid structure. These metal parts share are isotropic and possess similar mechanical properties to machined parts and are well suited for demanding, end-use applications including automotive and aerospace industries.

Use the table below to to sort materials based on their mechanical properties & characteristics. Once you have selected a material, click for more details, data sheets & application information. If you need help selecting a material, please don't hesitate to contact us!

Common Industrial 3D Printing Materials by Technology

SLS

Selective Laser Sintering

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Nylon PA12

General use, highly durable isotropic material suitable for end-use parts and production

Material Datasheet
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Nylon PA12 Black

General use, highly durable isotropic material suitable for end-use parts and production

Material Datasheet
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Glass Filled PA12

Wear resistant glass filled polymer offering high rigidity, strength and good elongation at break.

Material Datasheet
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Alumide

Alumide is a rigid, metallic polyamide powder mixed with fine aluminum particles.

Material Datasheet
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ESD PA12

Static dissipative PA12 thermoplastic for functional electronic prototyping and end-use part production.

Material Datasheet

SLA

Stereolithography

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Accura Xtreme White

Ultra-durable industrial resin for high detail parts, master patterns and functional assemblies.

Material Datasheet
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Accura Clearvue

High transparency polycarbonate-like resin for prototyping of functional assemblies with high clarity

Material Datasheet
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Accura 25

General use, highly durable isotropic material suitable for end-use parts and production

Material Datasheet
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BioMedical Resin

 Resin ideal for medical applications that require long term skin or mucosal membrane contact

Material Datasheet
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Accura Bluestone

General use, highly durable isotropic material suitable for end-use parts and production

Material Datasheet
 
 

FDM

Fused Deposition Modeling

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ABS-M30

Highly cost effective general purpose material for prototyping as well as end-use functional applications alike. 

Material Datasheet
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ASA

General purpose UV stable thermoplastic ideal for end-use outdoor applications & infrastructure.

Material Datasheet
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ABS ESD7

Static dissipative ABS thermoplastic for functional electronic prototyping and end-use part production.

Material Datasheet
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PC-ABS

Functional thermoplastic for functional applications requiring heat resistance & impact strength

Material Datasheet
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Polycarbonate

High tensile and flextural strength for demanding parts, tooling, fixtures and patterns

Material Datasheet
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TPU 92 A

 Highly functional, heat resistant elastomer material for end-use flexible parts in shore A92

Material Datasheet
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ULTEM 9085

High performance thermoplastic with an excellent strength to weight ratio and UL94 V-0 compliant.

Material Datasheet
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ULTEM 1010

High performance resin with exceptional heat resistance, dimensional stability and chemical resistance

Material Datasheet
 

Direct Metal Laser Sintering

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Stainless Steel 316L

Widely used high-strength, high-hardness metal with excellent corrosion resistance 

Material Datasheet
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Aluminum

 Strong & light weight ideal for thin wall parts for aerospace and automotive applications.

Material Datasheet
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Titanium Ti64

High performance material for parts that require corrosion resistance and/or biocompatibility

Material Datasheet

Common Industrial 3D Printing Materials by Technology

SLS

Selective Laser Sintering

Image

Nylon PA12

General use, highly durable isotropic material suitable for end-use parts and production

Material Datasheet
Image

Nylon PA12 Black

General use, highly durable isotropic material suitable for end-use parts and production

Material Datasheet
Image

Glass Filled PA12

Wear resistant glass filled polymer offering high rigidity, strength and good elongation at break.

Material Datasheet
Image

Alumide

Alumide is a rigid, metallic polyamide powder mixed with fine aluminum particles.

Material Datasheet
Image

ESD PA12

Static dissipative PA12 thermoplastic for functional electronic prototyping and end-use part production.

Material Datasheet

SLA

Stereolithography

Image

Accura Xtreme White

Ultra-durable industrial resin for high detail parts, master patterns and functional assemblies.

Material Datasheet
Image

Accura Clearvue

High transparency polycarbonate-like resin for prototyping of functional assemblies with high clarity

Material Datasheet
Image

Accura 25

General use, highly durable isotropic material suitable for end-use parts and production

Material Datasheet
Image

BioMedical Resin

 Resin ideal for medical applications that require long term skin or mucosal membrane contact

Material Datasheet
Image

Accura Bluestone

General use, highly durable isotropic material suitable for end-use parts and production

Material Datasheet

FDM

Fused Deposition Modeling

Image

ABS-M30

Highly cost effective general purpose material for prototyping as well as end-use functional applications alike. 

Material Datasheet
Image

ASA

General purpose UV stable thermoplastic ideal for end-use outdoor applications & infrastructure.

Material Datasheet
Image

ABS ESD7

Static dissipative ABS thermoplastic for functional electronic prototyping and end-use part production.

Material Datasheet
Image

PC-ABS

Functional thermoplastic for functional applications requiring heat resistance & impact strength

Material Datasheet
Image

Polycarbonate

High tensile and flextural strength for demanding parts, tooling, fixtures and patterns

Material Datasheet
Image

TPU 92 A

 Highly functional, heat resistant elastomer material for end-use flexible parts in shore A92

Material Datasheet
Image

ULTEM 9085

High performance thermoplastic with an excellent strength to weight ratio and UL94 V-0 compliant.

Material Datasheet
Image

ULTEM 1010

High performance resin with exceptional heat resistance, dimensional stability and chemical resistance

Material Datasheet

Direct Metal Laser Sintering

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Stainless Steel 316L

Widely used high-strength, high-hardness metal with excellent corrosion resistance 

Material Datasheet
Image

Aluminum

 Strong & light weight ideal for thin wall parts for aerospace and automotive applications.

Material Datasheet
Image

Titanium Ti64

High performance material for parts that require corrosion resistance and/or biocompatibility

Material Datasheet
Forge Labs Icon

3D Printing Technologies

50+ 

Unique Materials

1M+ 

Parts Produced 
Forge Labs Icon

3D Printing Technologies

50+ 

Unique Materials

1M+ 

Parts Produced