DIY ForumCategory: Pre-preg LayupsTo Prepreg or not to Prepreg DIY
Ryan asked 2 months ago

My 3D printer is running really well finally and want to make molds for carbon Fiber projects. Looking for advice on prepreg or wet layup processing or maybe something that i am missing.

3 Answers
Common Fibers Staff answered 2 months ago

Are you intending on making 3D printed molds or would you be wanting to make plugs that you could pull fiberglass molds from?
I ask because the biggest question here is temperature required. 
If you go with a pre-preg you are going to need a 3D printing material that can take repeated and sustained elevated temperatures.  Many at home 3D printers utilize PLA and ABS.  PLA has a glass transition temperature of around 145 F and ABS has a glass transition temperature around 205 F.  Both of these plastics would not be good materials to print straight to mold for pre-preg applications since pre-preg typically gets processed above 250 F.
PLA and ABS would be good for wet lay-ups but they need to be sealed and released before hand so that you end up with a mold that can make a couple parts.

Ryan answered 2 months ago

I have some polycarbonate that I will be testing and I have recently upgraded to print even hotter materials like peek if need be.  If my material glass transition is above 250, wpuld tgat seem like a valid way to use 3d printing or shpuld I be using 3d printing to make a plaster type mold first?

Ryan answered 2 months ago

I have some polycarbonate that I will be testing and I have recently upgraded to print even hotter materials like peek if need be.  If my material glass transition is above 250, wpuld tgat seem like a valid way to use 3d printing or shpuld I be using 3d printing to make a plaster type mold first?