Printing With CC3D Filament


There are not many reviews of specific brands of filament. So I grabbed 10 rolls of filament from 10 different branch to actual test the filament and tell you what I found. Here is what I found about this roll of filament from CC3D

CC3D filament prints well at temperatures between 185 °C and 225 °C and tends to clog the nozzle at lower temperatures. Color prints very consistently with little warping. The filament diameter tends to be slightly under 1.75 mm but within the specified tolerance.

I purchased this roll of CC3D sapphire blue filament Amazon. Here are the details about the tests I did and what I found out about this filament.

CC3D Filament

The filament came in a white box with CC3D logo printed on the front. From the back of the box we find that this filament was made in China by Hangzhou Zhuopu New Materials Technology Co., LTD.

The first concern is that this may be cheap, low quality Chinese filament. However, this filament is in the same price range at the time I purchased it as the other rolls I ordered.

Inside the box, the filament roll is sealed in a convenient resealable bag and protected with bubble wrap.

On the spool is a sticker identifying the color and recommended temperature range. A QR is printed on the sticker that identifies the batch the roll came from for quality care purposes.

It is not clear from the photos, but this filament has a nice glossy shine.

Filament Thickness

First Pre-Print Measurement1.73 mm
Second Pre-Print Measurement1.74 mm
Third Pre-Print Measurement1.74 mm
First Post-Print Measurement1.75 mm
Second Post-Print Measurement 1.74 mm
Third Post-Print Measurement 1.76 mm

All but one of the measured diameters were less than the 1.75 mm expected.

The first 3 measurements occurred after the roll was freshly open. The second set of diameter measurements were done after the test prints and a couple other personal prints were done.

There is not tolerance rating on either the packaging or the Amazon listing. The most common tolerance for 3D printing filament is ±0.02 mm. All measurements are within this level of tolerance.

Temperature

The temperature print tower came back looking great at all temperatures except 180 °C, where the nozzle got clogged. This indicates that this filament is not great for the lower end of the standard PLA temperature range.

Some of the Amazon reviewers indicated clogging problems. This test confirms that if the temperature is set too low, it will clog. Knowing that, all future test prints will be at 200 °C to avoid the potential of clogging.

The label indicated a print temperature range for this filament of 190 °C to 225 °C.

It is hard to see in the photos, but some stringing can be seen at all temperatures. It is much more pronounced at higher temperatures but it is very minor.

Color Consistency

From the temperature test, we can see that this filament has good consistency at the full range of temperatures.

Nozzle Temperature200 °C
Bed Temperature70 °C
Layer Height0.1 mm

This Benchy from Thingiverse was also printed to test for color consistency. Different layers print at different speeds. The lower layers take longer to print as they include the outer walls and the infill. After the deck top layers finished, the upper layers printed faster.

The faster printing higher layers are printing on top of layers that had less time to cool. This shows up on the Benchy hull.

Layers that took longer to print have a more matte look while the faster printing layers printed more glossy.

Interestingly, we can see the same thing happen in the temperature tower as the layers with no opening that took longer to print appearing less glossy than the faster printing layers.

Filament Swatch Test

Nozzle Temperature200 °C
Bed Temperature70 °C
Layer Height0.2 mm

Here is what I found printing out this filament swatch test from Thingiverse.

A filament swatch test is used to test multiple facets of a filament. Several elements of this print are more dependent on the printer than the filament.

Some filament specific aspects we can see are the warping on the comb area in the bottom right of the print. No brim was used in this print. I had originally printed this with a large brim and it showed no warping. This reprint reflects how well the filament stick in more narrow areas.

The layers thickness segments tell us how transparent the filament is and how thick you need to print to prevent light from getting through.

At 0.4 mm, we can clearly see light coming through the print. By 0.6 mm, no light shines through. These thicknesses are approximate as it is impossible to get the distance of the bed from the nozzle to be perfect.

Warping

Nozzle Temperature200 °C
Bed Temperature70 °C
Layer Height0.1 mm

To test the warping resistance of the filament, I printed a warp test print from Thingiverse.

Despite being designed to test for warping, no warping occurred in this print.

This print is 14.3 mm wide while the comb bristles on the swatch were only 1mm wide. If you want to print anything with thin foot prints on the print bed, be sure to use a brim.

Flow Rate

The last thing I checked was the required flow rate for this filament.

We already know that the diameter of the filament is slightly under the 1.75mm that it is rated for.

The flow rate is used to increase or decrease the amount of filament extruded. If the filament is not exactly 1.75mm in diameter, the amount of filament that comes out of the nozzle will be more or less than expected, depending on if the filament is thicker or thinner.

We could change the filament diameter setting rather than the flow rate. This is set in the machine settings in Cura and are a bit hidden.

It is easier to change the value for flow.

I grabbed a plain cube from Thingiverse. I don’t want anything on the outside like the calibration cube has as these interfere with measuring the wall thickness.

Here are the printer settings I used.

Nozzle Temperature200 °C
Bed Temperature70 °C
Layer Height0.2 mm
Wall Thickness0.8 mm
Top Layers0
Bottom Layers1

The wall thickness was set to be twice the nozzle width. This is what we measure to determine the flow rate.

We measure the thickness of the walls and come up with an average.

Wall Thickness
0.78 mm
0.81 mm
0.80 mm
0.79 mm

The average measured wall thickness is 0.795 mm. My calipers are only accurate to 0.01 mm. Due to the limitations of the calipers, the true average is between 0.785 mm and 0.805 mm. If we want to be more precise, we can increase the wall thickness.

The error in the thickness is less than 1%, so a flow rate of 1.0 is perfectly adequate for this filament.

Verl Humpherys

I have been 3D printing since 2017, using both FDM and SLA printers. My prints have varied from small D&D figurines to full sized baby Groot. I printed mounts for my various game consoles and my Oculus Rift. Any problem you can have with a 3D printer, I have had. And I am here to tell you what I have learned.

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