Airwolf 3D recently announced the release of their all-new AXIOM 3D printer series. One of the first things that enthusiasts pointed out about the printer is its use of a ceramic glass build plate instead of the tried-and-true tempered glass plate that most users are accustomed to. For years, 3D printing enthusiasts have been trying to find ways to incorporate ceramics into their heated build plate designs. Some 3D tinkerers have even used ceramic floor tiles as their 3d build plates, with mixed results. Thanks to advances in ceramics a new material has emerged with exactly the right characteristics for use in 3D printing applications. So, what makes ceramic glass so much better than other traditional print bed materials?
Thermal Shock Resistance
Ceramic glass build plates are extremely heat resistant. Traditional 1/4″ glass, like the kind used in windows, typically breaks when heated to 230°F and plunged into 50°F water. This is an example of “thermal shock,” which describes the cracking or shattering that can occur when a build plate is exposed to excessive heat, uneven temperatures, or rapid changes in temperature. Tempered glass, which is the most common build plate material, fares much better than untreated glass. It can sustain temperature changes of about 428°F down to 50°F before sustaining thermal shock damage. Airwolf 3D’s ceramic build plates, on the other hand, are designed to endure temperature changes as high as 1292°F down to 50°F without sustaining thermal shock damage. These temperature extremes far exceed the operational temperatures of Airwolf 3D’s AXIOM printers; so the likelihood of damaging the AXIOM’s build plate through normal use are extremely remote. Even with one of the hottest running print heads in its class (315°C/599°F) the JrX does not even come close to reaching the heat tolerances of its new ceramic glass build plates.
Thermal Fatigue Resistance
Traditional tempered glass loses its strength over time. Repeated heating and cooling cycles (up to 600°F) can degrade the strength of tempered glass by as much as 30% over time. Ceramic glass, on the other hand, will not fatigue after repeated heating and cooling cycles. Its strength remains consistent throughout its entire service life which makes it an ideal material for 3D print beds. The ceramic glass plate used in the AXIOM also undergoes almost zero thermal expansion which virtually eliminates the possibility of build plate bowing and warping.
While Airwolf 3D’s build plate is termed “ceramic glass”but it is actually not glass at all. Rather it is a transparent ceramic material that is commonly used in applications that require heat resistance and durability such as stove tops, fireplaces, and outdoor space heaters. As a ceramic product it already possesses strength advantages over tempered and untempered glass; however, the ceramic glass plate used in the Airwolf 3D AXIOM series printers also features a camber reinforced backside that adds extra strength and rigidity to the plate. As an added bonus, the ceramic material also allows better heat transmission to the print object which promotes better adhesion with most 3D printing materials. If you would like to learn more about the AXIOM’s build plate you can click here to view the Ceramic Glass Plate in our online store.
ABOUT AIRWOLF 3D
Airwolf 3D is committed to designing and manufacturing high-performance consumables, accessories and 3D printers that are fast, affordable, durable and easy to use. All Airwolf 3D printers are made in America, manufactured in the company’s 12,000 sq. ft. facility in Costa Mesa, Calif. Airwolf 3D printers can be found in Fortune 500 companies, engineering firms, government agencies and schools worldwide. For more information visit www.airwolf3d.com, telephone (949) 478-2933, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit the company’s showroom at 130 McCormick, Suite 105, Costa Mesa, CA 92626 for a free demonstration.