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Stereolithography (SLA)

High Speed Prototyping Utilized Through SLA

High speed, high accuracy, and high heat SLA prototyping has been one of The Technology House’s specialties since the company was founded in 1996. SLA offers the benefits of high-quality surface finishes and part accuracy of 0 .005-in for the first inch formed and 0.002-in per inch thereafter. Prototypes created using SLA are widely used for design review, fit and function, show, marketing and sales models, and urethane and casting master patterns.

How Does SLA Create High Precision Parts?

SLA prototyping machines build a 3D model of a component using a vat of liquid ultraviolet-curable photopolymer resin and an ultraviolet laser to form one thin layer at a time. The laser beam traces a cross-section of the model on the surface of the liquid resin for each layer. Exposure to the ultraviolet laser light cures and solidifies the pattern traced on the resin and joins it to the layer below. After the pattern has been traced, the SLA machine’s elevator platform is lowered by the thickness of a single layer and the process is repeated. After an SLA is printed, we remove the excess resin and cure the component in an ultraviolet oven. This high speed technique allows TTH to create and deliver complex 3D models of any shape and size in as little as a single day. Our standard resolution SLA machines can build prototypes at 0.005-in per layer, but when precision is especially critical, our Viper SLA machine can build at a standard resolution of 0.004-in/layer or a high resolution of 0.002-in/layer.

SLA Prototype Materials

TTH can produce one-piece SLA’s up to 20” x 20” x 11” in size, but we can easily create larger parts by bonding multiple pieces in our finishing department. SLA parts are ideal for use as master patterns for either prototype or production urethanes and metal castings.

  • Accura® Xtreme plastic:
    • Look and feel of a durable molded plastic
    • ABS-like material (gray, extremely durable)
    • Outstanding durability and impact resistance
    • Thermal resistance >60° C
    • Applications
      • Form, fit and function prototypes
      • Durable assemblies
      • Snap-fit assemblies
      • Tough enclosures
      • Consumer electronic components
      • Master patterns for RTV/silicone molding
  • RenShape® SL 7810:
    • ABS-like performance and appearance
    • White, high-gloss surface finish
    • Parts retain strength and dimensional stability, even in humid conditions
    • Good green strength requires minimal part finishing
    • Well suited for creating high-quality masters for vacuum casting parts
    • Applications include master patterns, concept models, functional prototypes and general parts.
  • RenShape® SL 5530:
    • High temperature resistance
    • Amber colored
    • Very rigid
    • Good water resistance
    • Suitable for under-the-hood applications
    • Suitable for electrical applications
    • Resists automotive fluids
  • RenShape™ SL 7545:
    • Offers properties similar to a polypropylene (PP)
    • Clearish, flexible
    • High green strength
    • Accurate material with wide process latitude
    • Excellent side walls and fine features
    • High durability
    • High elongation at break
    • Suitable for snap-fit parts
  • Huntsman SL 7870:
    • Ultra-clear, rigid, ABS-like material
    • Produces durable parts with excellent accuracy
    • Parts retain strength and dimensional stability, even in humid conditions
    • Good green strength requires minimal part finishing
    • Produces high-quality masters for investment casting of parts

sla-materials-chart

SLA Finishes:
Level 1 Finish: Support removal. Build lines will still be present in the part.
Level 2 Finish (Standard Finish): Level 1 Finish plus light sanding of support area and exterior and sand blast.
Level 3 Finish: Level 2 Finish and sand smooth/remove build layer stair-stepping.
Level 4 Finish: Level 3 Finish plus sanding interior walls, filling with body filler, and primer application. Part will be delivered with a primer finish.
Level 5 Finish (Mold-Ready Finish or Paint-Ready Finish): Level 3 Finish plus sanding interior walls, filling with body filler, and primer application. Part will then be painted or used as a silicone mold master.

Clear SLA materials:
Quick Clear Finish: Support removal, light wet sand of support area and exterior and clearcoat. Parts will be clear, but some build lines will be visible.
Supreme Clear Finish: Support removal, wet sand smooth/remove build layer stair-stepping and clearcoat. Ideal when a show quality finish is needed.

FDM Finishes:
Standard Finish: Support Removal. Build lines will still be present in the part.
Level 5 Finish (Paint-Ready Finish): Sand smooth/remove build layer stair-stepping, sand interior walls and fill with body filler, and apply primer.

SLS Finishes:
Standard Finish: Remove any un-sintered powder sticking to the surface.  Due to the porosity of the material, the surface finish will be rough.
Level 5 Finish (Paint-Ready Finish): Sand smooth/remove build layer stair-stepping, sand interior walls and fill with body filler, and apply primer.

Polyjet Finish:
Standard Finish: Support removal, and exterior sanding.

DMLS Finishes:
Unfinished: Removal of support material. Parts will have a raw finish.
Shot Peen: Through the use of plasticity, it will impact a surface with sufficient force to create plastic deformation.
Abrasive Blast: Propel high-pressure stream of grit and ceramic material against the surface of the part to smooth it.

Additional DMLS Finishes:
Electrochemical Polishing, Electroplating, Electrochemical Polishing, Micro Machining Process (MMP), and CNC Machining.

Additional 3D Printing Finishes:
Plating (gold, nickel, and chrome), soft-touch (grips), dye, frost, custom paint, and texture.

Click here for printable version.

 

Applications:

  • Design review
  • Fit & function tests
  • Show models
  • Urethane & casting masters

Choose The Best Rapid Prototyping Option For Your Next Project.

sla prototype and sla prototyping

high heat sla