Z resolution vs Torque (3d Printed)

Recently I noticed that models that are thin  and vertically printed in PLA had a very low tolerance to rotational and lateral torque. This came as a surprise as generally my experience with PLA and ABS have both made them feel quite sturdy and they stand up very well to compression lateral torque in general. While experimenting to make these structures stronger through print parameters I noticed that the parameters to pay attention to are not just the fill material internal structure but also the Z resolution of the print.

Initially this my inclination was to assume that a higher resolution meant a sturdier object. Though I noticed quickly that I was wrong.

I ended up making 5 prints with the corresponding Z resolution 0.15mm, 0.20mm, 0.25mm, 0.30mm, 0.35mm.

WP_20131209_16_24_13_Pro (1)_mod

All had the same medium fill rate and were all printed with the same speed on a Afinia H-Series.

To my surprise the 0.15mm broke in my hand before I could event test it. So I don’t have any info on that test.

I found that there isn’t a huge difference between the print resolutions.

resolution Weight
0.15mm Unknown very weak
0.20mm 38lbs
0.25mm 46lbs
0.30mm 38lbs
0.35 41lbs

Interestingly enough it’s not linear which might be due to the fact the slight mistakes on my alignments in the vice where I applied the torque. My prediction is that with higher resolutions there are further breaking points within the structure that might weaken it since each layer is added one at a time.

Any idea’s and comments on the results and thoughts are most welcome.

video of one of the tests here:



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