Stratasys GrabCAD Print is a sophisticated 3D printing app that allows designers and engineers to prepare, schedule and monitor 3D printing jobs. Since its release, GrabCAD has continued to make exciting updates to this software and we will be updating you every other month on its new features. In this set of release notes, we will be looking at versions 1.29, 1.30 and the just-released 1.31.
Advanced FDM Is Available For The F170 & F270
You read that right (I couldn’t believe it either). I will even repeat it, ADVANCED FDM IS AVAILABLE FOR THE F170 and F270! This means that every current FDM machine in the Stratasys product line minus the new F120 is compatible with Advanced FDM. Don’t fret if you have an older Fortus System as some of them, like the 400mc and the early generation 900mc machines, are still supported with the new Advanced FDM tool.
Please, please, please, if you own a Stratasys F123 or Fortus machine watch the video in the link below. The link will take you to a blog we did a few months ago on how to use Advanced FDM (not to mention you get to hear my soothing voice). This is an amazing tool that can truly shift the way you set up your parts for FDM, it's a game-changer.
Use Model As Support for FDM
Every time the printer switches between model material and support material while printing, time is wasted. To minimize this loss, it is now possible to have the majority of the support structures on your print to be printed in model material with only support material being used for the last few layers where the support structure actually makes contact with the part. Previously, this option was only available when using the Insight Software and has always been a go-to option to speed up print times on tall prints with support running the full height of the part. Depending on the size and geometry of your part, this can sometimes remove several hours of time off a print job. It is important to realize there are limitations when using this option, as the majority of the support will not dissolve in the wash tank and can become trapped inside of cavities and voids.
The Best Little Button Ever
This little button completes the circle between GrabCAD Print and Insight. Now you can send your setup Insight CMB files directly to a GrabCAD Print tray with one click from inside of Insight. If you missed it a few months ago, the newest version of Insight is now embedded within GrabCAD Print. From the GrabCAD Print application, simply go to Apps > Launch Insight to open the newest available build of Insight.
PolyJet’s Advanced Slicer Is Now Live
If you haven’t been part of the Advanced Slicer Beta Program then you might not be aware of some of the capabilities that are packed into the J735 and J750 printers. To turn on the Advanced Slicer go to File > Preferences > PolyJet > Enable Advanced Slicer. The video below will skim through some of the quick features of the PolyJet Advanced Slicer.
PANTONE Certified Colors
First in the long list of features available with the use of the PolyJet Advanced Slicer features is the use of PANTONE certified colors. With the Advanced Slicer turned on and having the Vivid color set plus VeroBlackPlus, VeroPureWhite and VeroClear loaded, when you select the geometry you can designate a PANTONE color rather than the traditional color picker. Each color in the drop-down list will also indicate how accurate to expect the PANTONE color to match the designated color in the PANTONE Coated book.
Clear + Textured and Parts-Inside-Parts
The other benefit, is that the Advanced Slicer will also automatically boolean cut your Texture-Mapped VRML parts so you don’t need to worry about overlapping geometry. This means you can simply toss your CAD model into a larger solid shape and then set the solid shape to have transparency in GrabCAD print. GrabCAD Print’s Advanced Slicer for PolyJet will automatically handle clipping out the overlap, giving you one solid transparent print with your model floating inside of it.
Additionally, when you use clear pixel data in your texture mapped VRML files, you will have full-color textured parts that have clear sections within them. To do this, you will need to use .PNG files instead of .JPG files as your texture mapping images in your VRML. If a single pixel on the model has any level of transparency, then the PolyJet Advanced Slicer will automatically set up the model to be printed so the base material of the part is clear rather than white. Think of the possibilities, floating full-color 3D models inside a clear cube, a highly detailed brain inside of a clear head or wrapping graphics around a clear sphere. The possibilities are endless.
Additional PolyJet Color Training
These features are rather advanced and it will take more than a few blog posts or written tutorials to fully maximize the use of your J Series or Connex3 printer. To make things more ‘clear’ (bad pun), I would suggest reaching out to TriMech and asking about our Advanced J750/J735 Color Training. In this two-day on-site class, our Applications Engineers cover multiple methods of producing full-color, clear, textured and bump-mapped parts to help your team to take color 3D printing to the next level and work with your company on your exact needs to make sure you are fully leveraging your 3D printer investment.
Minor But No Less Important Updates
Last but not least, we have a handful of very useful new features that these versions released. You can also see a list of new features for each version within the GrabCAD Print application by going to Help > Show Release Notes.
- Updated native CAD file support – Now supports SOLIDWORKS 2019, Inventor 2019, Creo 5.0, NX 12.0 and more
- Support for the new Stratasys F120 FDM printer
- Repair meshing errors on VRML files
- Better CMB from Insight conflict resolution
- Improved error messages for unsupported file types
- GrabCAD Print Server has been updated to 2.0
- Printer History error fixes
Not yet signed up for GrabCAD Print? Download the software for free by clicking the link below.