Raise3D N2+, better than SLS :)

Thoughts about Raise3D, 3D printing and making in general.
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Joined: Sun Aug 07, 2016 8:19 am

Raise3D N2+, better than SLS :)

Postby Pierre » Sat Sep 10, 2016 12:05 pm

Hi All,

We at Solidexpress are using SLS machines since our beginning in 2003, 13 years ago... Time goes so fast.

When we looked at fdm machines 5 years ago, none was an option to replace PA12 sintering, even the stratasys one, because of price of material.

Then last year came the Zortrax, that made us change our mind a little, because it was able to produce parts we can sell with the same quality level our customers are used to, and because it was the first machine that works. I mean the first machine you where sure to find your part in the morning :)
But problem with zortrax is that you just can't produce big parts without troubles, mainly because of ABS.

And then came the Raise3D N2+ !!!

Since we have it we never stopped printing on it, some prints where more than 100 hours long.

Of course, we had some Buildtak problems and Z-hop settings troubles, but the main things are :

1) it works !!!

2) it produces parts with better surface and better overall material characteristics than SLS.
SLS parts are harder to finish that the one made on FDM
with its about 3% retractation, PA12 is not so easy to use when complicated geometries and big flat parts.

3) it can produce very big parts




Our usual customers says that the parts produced with the N2 in Polymax are stronger and easier to finish than the one they use to buy made by SLS in PA12.
We could now replace 50 % of the parts we produce by SLS with the one made with the N2.. The other 50% can't be replaced because of complicated supports.

So the N2+ is qualified for us and we bought 2 more last week.

Of course, the main weekness of FDM remains compared to SLS : supports are still needed !!
We thought that we could deal with it using the dual extruder and special filament, but we didn't..

That's why We would like to suggest something for the N3++ :)
Please put a second head able to move 0.5 mm in Z with high precision ( maybe a piezzo linear actuator ?..?)
I hope that it's not patented yet :)

Let's talk about speed :

We can say that FDM is slow compared to SLS. SLS is 3 or 4 time faster at the same resolution but if you add the machine price criteria, you can calculate the opposite :

With 150 k$, you can buy 1 SLS machine and produce for 168 hours per week
with 150 k$, you can buy 35 N2 machines and produce for 5880 hours per week ...

When you count like this, no doubt that N2 is much faster than any SLS :)

So congratulations to the raise3D team, and please keep raising 3D !! If you make the water-soluble support work, it will be the beginning of the end of non-metal SLS if they keep there crazy machine prices.

Have a nice day

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Re: Raise3D N2+, better than SLS :)

Postby Vicky@Raise3D » Sat Sep 10, 2016 4:54 pm

Thanks for you support! We are so happy that our printers can help your work.

We are testing Esun's PVA currently. Works OK up to now. Maybe you can get a spool and take a try.

Andy Cohen
Posts: 170
Joined: Mon Mar 21, 2016 4:43 pm

Re: Raise3D N2+, better than SLS :)

Postby Andy Cohen » Sat Sep 10, 2016 5:56 pm

I would really doubt any FDM machine could beat an SLS for all use cases. But for sure based on cost the Raise3D N2 and N2+ are hard to beat. However... there's issues, that in our opinion, need to be fixed before either model gets a complete thumbs up from us:
1. The factory set bed is a joke. Make it user adjustable... 5 points. Just do it and stop being foolish. Designing for newbies first is not the right way to go. This is a big pro machine. As such it has to support switching plates. Just waving your hand at it and saying the thumbscrew height adjustment is good enough shows that Raise3D doesn't want to understand.
2. Redesign the extruder feeder so it is more reliable. The unsprung approach works for a period of time, but sprung and adjustable will always be more reliable.
3. Change the stepper driver settings to increase the strength of the X Y motion control. This is a big machine. It goes in a shop or the garage, not the desktop. Silence is NOT a requirement, but reliability is!
4. Incorporate the mods for internal cooling of the controller board
5. Fix the extruder fans so they cutout when the extruders go under 50C
6. Design a proper, controllable RADIAL downward fan and duct for both single and dual extruders
and lastly for an N3:
Redesign as a core XY and get FAR away from Ultimaker's design.

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