Leapfrog 3D Printers has just released a new type of print material for the public. It’s an optimized version of PLA they refer to as ‘Engineering PLA‘. Leapfrog are marketing this new material as a functional build PLA rather than simply for prototyping. The main aim of developing the material is to provide a higher strength version of PLA.
While most printers utilize a range of materials, PLA is still the most popular. This is largely due to its ease of use and mass availability. PLA also incurs less warping than ABS, which allows for more accurate and much bigger prints. Furthermore, PLA is more resistant to mechanical stresses and weather conditions.
However, there are significants disadvantages presented by the material. One of the downsides to PLA is that it isn’t quite as resilient as ABS or Nylon. This has led to lower adoption rates in projects requiring high durability materials.
The core property they highlight is its strength. Leapfrog are touting it as stronger than ABS. This gives it a wider range of applications while retaining the accuracy of a PLA print. Leapfrog have also talked about the stronger adhesion levels that the prints achieve under this filament. This is a result of the high layer bonding that the material can operate at.
It’s clear that Leapfrog wants to retain all the benefits of PLA printing while adding speed and strength. They claim that the process of printing Engineering PLA can be sped up by raising the temperature. The standard extrusion temperature is 205-215 °C, however, the print speed can go up by about 30% if the heat level is kept somewhere between 220-230°C.
The company has stated that the material is particularly suitable for HS (XL), Xeed, XceL, Bolt printers.
|Filament Diameter||1.75 mm|
|Standard Temperature Range||205 – 215 °C|
|Recommended Bed Temperature||45 °C|
|Weight of Single Filament Roll||0.75 kg|