E3D Scaffold Filament


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Now out of beta, Scaffold has been tested and tweaked for optimal support generation. PVA-based, but different, E3D has printed some extremely complicated all-in-one gearing mechanisms thanks to this beauty.

As a support material Scaffold is distinctly superior to regular PVA, and is much easier to print. Scaffold prints easily, much like PLA, and forms strong clean support structures, with much improved adhesion to a range of materials. Scaffold is formulated to adhere best to Nylon materials, and PET/Co-polyester materials. Scaffold is a great match for Taulman Nylons, PET-G, ColorFabb XT, T-Glase and many others. Scaffold also works well with PLA, adhesion is not as strong as with PET or Nylon type materials, but good results are still very possible. Scaffold will adhere to ABS and most other materials too, but the adhesion is not as strong as with Nylons or PET/Co-Polyester materials.

Scaffold is an experimental material, and requires some care in use. The filament must be kept dry, the supplied resealable bag should be used for storage. If the filament does absorb moisture then it can be dried by gently warming the material to 50 degrees centigrade for a few hours. In use the material prints very nicely with excellent adhesion to itself and other materials when printed from 190-220C, just like PLA. Scaffold adheres exceptionally well to our UHU Glue stic applied to glass or any other surface. Scaffold can be printed onto a cold bed, or a bed temperature of up to 90C. Beyond 90C Scaffold will still print and adhere, but will become soft and be less reliable in forming strong precise support structures.

If left inside a hot nozzle for an extended period of time (over 15-20 minutes or so) Scaffold will begin to degrade and forms a nasty non-flowing substance that can be hard to purge out of the nozzle. It is important to purge the nozzle regularly, and slicer features such as prime towers for regular purging are recommended. 

Scaffold dissolves in standard tap water. The rate at which Scaffold dissolves is much increased if there is agitation. Scrubbing a print under warm running water with a stiff bristled dish cleaning brush rapidly removes Scaffold supports. Support structures deep inside hidden cavities can be hard to dissolve and remove, but a long soaking will eventually soften and dissolve material inside cavities. Regular agitation and warm water help a lot. If you have access to an ultrasonic cleaner this will greatly increase the rate at which Scaffold is dissolved - we use a bath temperature of 50C and full ultrasonic power.

Scaffold is a work-in-progress, and we're working on improving it. We think it's awesome, and ready for people to start experimenting with, however we must stress that the material is experimental and requires a bit of effort to get results. We're keen to get your feedback, and if you have any comments we'd love to hear from you.

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