Why should you start 3D printing with Stainless Steel? | Sculpteo Blog

Why should you start 3D printing with Stainless Steel?

Posted By Lucie Gaget on Dec 3, 2019 | 0 comments

If you want to 3D print with metal, you might wonder which metal to choose? Which one could be the best fit for your 3D printing project? As an online 3D printing service, our mission is to help you make the best choice possible. This is why, today, we are going to focus on the Stainless Steel material. 

Here is a complete guide of 3D printing with Stainless Steel. Binder Jetting, DMLS, or FDM, which technology should you choose? Stainless Steel 316L or Ultrafuse 316L, which material is better for your project? What are the benefits offered by these technologies and materials? Let’s find out. 


What are the benefits of Stainless Steel

The interest in metal 3D printing keeps on growing, new 3D printers are unveiled new technologies. Stainless Steel has actually great potential when it comes to additive manufacturing. While starting to consider metal 3D printing, businesses are looking for a technique enabling them to create technical parts, resistant and durable. If that is precisely what you are looking for, it looks like Stainless Steel could be the perfect match for your metal project.


There are actually many good reasons for you to start using Stainless Steel. Indeed, this metal material is offering high tensile strength, but also great resistance to heat and corrosion! The material provides strong resistance against corrosion and is distinguished for its high ductility, making it a good candidate for several different industries. 


This metal material is, obviously, very resistant, but can also handle really complex shapes! Additive manufacturing will offer you the opportunity to create accurate and technical parts. It is even easier to achieve a complex design with metal additive manufacturing than other traditional manufacturing methods such as foundry or machining. Highly detailed designs can be printed with Stainless Steel.


Metal 3D printing is a perfect technique to produce your fully functional parts, and at the same time, whelp you reduce your assembly time. Moreover, 3D printing Stainless Steel will be the perfect way to get durable metal products, and also lightweight because additive manufacturing allows you to rework the design of your part. Maybe you could incorporate lattices in your 3D design.


What are the possibilities applications of Stainless Steel

This 3D printing material can actually be used for diverse different sectors. Automotive, medical, military, aeronautics or jewelry are all sectors starting to make the most of the advantages of this material. So, what is it possible to 3D print in Stainless Steel? 


This 3D printing material can be used to manufacture bracketry or custom tools. Indeed, metal 3D printing is clearly a big advantage for any tooling process, it is offering the opportunity to produce resistant and accurate tools perfectly adapted to your missions and to your needs. Medical devices can also be printed with this material! 


The applications of 3D printing in the medical sector are growing every day, and metal 3D printing is part of this incredible revolution, allowing us to create devices from tools to implants. 


From prototyping to the production of end-use parts, Stainless Steel is a good option for your metal parts. 

Stainless Steel 316 04-min

How to 3D print Stainless Steel?

Now that you know all the advantages of this metal material, you certainly want to know you could start using it for your own project? There are actually two different ways to get your Stainless Steel objects 3D printed: you can invest in a metal 3D printer, or you can start using an online 3D printing service to produce these parts for you. 


Stainless Steel 3D printer: What is available on the market?

3D printing metal is not the most affordable thing to do. Indeed, getting your own desktop 3D printer might be really expensive and is more addressed to bigger businesses in this case. If you want to develop your project at home using a desktop 3D printer, keep in mind that these printers are difficult to operate and require high temperatures. But for each problem, 3D printing has an answer! You still can use Fused Deposition Modeling technology (FDM) with plastic filaments with added metal powders. 


However, great metal 3D printers can help you manufacture your Stainless Steel projects. Here are a few examples of Stainless Steel 3D printers:


  • The DM P2500 3D printer, developed by Digital Metal, a Swedish company. This printer is based on Binder Jetting technology. This machine is an industrial 3D printer  
  • The Metal X 3D print system, a powerful 3D printer to produce Stainless Steel. 
  • Desktop Metal also offers a metal 3D printer using Binder Jetting technology, with the Studio System 3D printing machine.


Use an online 3D printing service 

This might be the less expensive option if you need Stainless Steel parts. Using our online 3D printing service, you will have to choose between three different printing technologies: Binder Jetting, Direct Metal Laser Sintering or FDM. Order your Stainless Steel parts right now! 


Using Binder Jetting, our Stainless Steel 316 will be more specifically made for small size parts. Regarding the 3D printing process with this technology, the part is created additively with a binding agent.


With Direct Metal Laser Sintering or DMLS, Stainless Steel 316L parts are created layer by layer. The powder is sintered at a temperature of around 1500°C and 1600°C. The metal parts printed with the DMLS technology will need supports, that will be removed manually. Some geometries such as overhangs can’t be printed without these supports. This technology is producing a part with great mechanical properties.


Last but not least, do you know that filament 3D printing is also possible using Sculpteo’s online service? You can now get metal parts 3D printed you can also use our Ultrafuse 316L material! Created by BASF, Ultrafuse 316L filament is composed of 90% stainless steel and 10% polymer which allows it to be used in any FDM/FFF printer. 

This engineering-grade metal filament is affordable and might become the best option to production your metal parts. This 3D printing process if perfect for tooling, for molds or even for jigs and fixtures. You can print any of your functional parts using Ultrafuse 316L



Are you ready to 3D print your project using one of our Stainless Steel options? Upload your 3D file on our website and we will take care of the rest! Your parts will be ready and delivered to you in a few days.

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