One of the many things that fused deposition modeling (FDM) printers lack is that smooth finish you always get from injection-molded parts. Instead, you often get a matte, rough finish with visible layer lines. A popular way to get rid of these layer lines is to sand and fill until the surface is smooth. This method, however, takes ages to get anywhere close to smooth.
Another way that’s not only faster but also much better in preserving accuracy is acetone smoothing, which can be applied to any material that can be dissolved in acetone. The most popular filament to acetone smooth is ABS.
In this article, we’ll take a look at how you can acetone smooth your own prints. Follow along as we show you the process of smoothing the pictured BuddaYoda.
There are countless methods of acetone smoothing your 3D print, some more dangerous than others. We have therefore constructed a simple design with normal household items. Here’s what you’ll need:
Acetone is a great tool for everything between cleaning your hot end to welding together two 3D printed parts. However, you need to know that acetone can also be very dangerous if used incorrectly.
Acetone is very flammable, so don’t use it near fire or something that can cause a spark. Also, be sure to work in a well-ventilated area since the vapor can cause headaches, dizziness, and a sore throat if breathed in too much.
Now that you have prepared all of the materials, you can finally start acetone smoothing your prints.
Feature image source: Alexander Issal / All3DP
License: The text of "Acetone 3D Print Smoothing – 6 Easy Steps" by All3DP is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.