MaterialGuide PLA

Overview

PLA (Polylactic-Acid) is very easy to print and one of the most commonly sold filaments for FDM 3D printer. Is is plant based (most times corn or sugarcane is the basic crop used) which leads to advantages like a low printing temperature an entry level price, but it also makes it not the hardest material and it gets soft at relatively low temperatures.

PLA was one of the first materials available for 3D printing. Therefor is is one of the most developed materials and available with a range of additives that give it special features. Just to name a few, Wood and Metal filaments are based on a PLA blend.

PLA is recyclable under correct conditions. It will break down naturally overtime but at a slow rate. Certain factors like heat can speed up that process.

PLA prints with a lightly sweet smell when it is printed. Due to the low printing temperature PLA is less likely to warp. This combined with the good dimensional accuracy the material has it is easy to print.

The 3D prints with PLA can be extraordinary, detailed and beautiful to look at. We can recommend it for all general purpose prints, prototypes and test prints. It is great filament to start with.

Key Facts

Strength80%
80%
Printability100%
100%
Durability40%
40%
Stiffness100%
100%

features

Easy to print
affordable filament
Dimensional accurat
No bad odor while printing

downsides

not for warm climates
Low flexibility / can break
Not for outdoor use

Typical Prints

Low Poly Gecko by TK3DPrinting

PLA is easy to print with a slight shiny finish

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