RE: Duraform

From: Miller, Michael W (
Date: Thu Mar 19 1998 - 00:07:08 EET

Some light (personal opinions) info on DTM's new Duraform:

Duraform appears to be the most accurate and easiest material to build
with yet.

Duraform is a polyamide, essentially a nylon alloy, whose ingredients
are closely guarded by DTM, with mechanical properties somewhere between
plain nylon and glass/nylon. Material is fully recycleable except when
we screw up the build. There is some inconclusive evidence that the
ideal build temperature will lower slightly as the material is reused.

The material is very stable over time, especially after reaching
hydrostatic stability (time req'd unknown)... appears to be at least as
good as .0005 inches per inch.

One persistant problem is the accumulation of fairy frost (condensate)
on the laser window. Problem should be solvable by checking temperature
and flow of heated N2 to the window which likely requires replacing
seals on the tubing on older machines and verifying that heater is
working. Additionally, DTM says a new metal baffle (the tubular part
that the window mounts in) may also be required for older machines. I
have every confidence that DTM will solve this.

DTM is working hard on a glass composite version of Duraform which has
promise of even better strength, stability and ease of use. We are
hoping to utilize this new composite to manufacture light duty tooling.
Many thanks to Joe Mooring of DTM for his efforts on this project.

Michael W Miller (
The Boeing Company MS 17-PE B-XT62
Propulsion Experimental Hardware 206-655-3289
Rapid Prototyping 655-4366 Lab 655-4365

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