One of the criticisms often leveraged against SLA 3D printing is that the resins used are not strong enough for real world, useful applications. Formlabs has been steadily releasing new materials that each provide a new property to their users. Now, Formlabs has added a new resin to join Clear, Flexible, and Castable: Tough.
Formlabs claims that their Tough resin for their Form 1+ printer, will exhibit similar strain and impact resistance as an ABS printed part. They have provided multiple sample images showing their new resin being put to use in applications not usually seen in SLA prints.
This 3D printed chain is supporting a cinder block. The average cinder block weighs between 30-35 pounds, an impressive test for the new resin.
A set of 3D printed gears and a wrench show the mechanical capabilities of Tough resin.
To help celebrate and show off their new resin, Formlabs made one of every Makers’ favorite gizmos, a Rube Goldberg machine. Check out the video below to see lots of Tough resin 3D printed parts in action.
If you are a Form 1+ owner and have a great idea of how to take full advantage of this new Tough resin, Formlabs is holding a contest to get you started. The winners will receive a liter of Tough resin and a new resin tank for printing Tough in.
This isn’t the first example that has been demonstrated showing that SLA prints can be stronger than they are given credit for. At this year’s Mid West RepRap Fest, the Maker Juice team loaded a hook they had printed out of their G+ resin with everything they could find — until their scale reported an error from too much weight.
The combination of Clear, Flexible, and Tough should make for some very interesting prototypes from users who design assemblies that utilize all three resins. What other characteristics do you think would help make the Form 1+ or other SLA printers more useful?