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Polycarbonate Filament

Polycarbonate is a strong, durable, high temperature and impact resistant used commonly in harsher environments
Overview | Positives & NegativesHardware Requirements

An Overview of Polycarbonate Filament

Polycarbonate (PC) is a high strength material intended for tough environments and engineering applications. It has extremely high heat deflection, and impact resistance. Polycarbonate also has a high glass transition temperature of 150° Celsius. This means it will maintain its structural integrity up to that temperature, making it suitable for use in high-temperature applications. It can also be bent without breaking and is often used in applications where some minor flexibility is required. Most available Polycarbonate filaments contain additives that allow the filament to be printed at lower temperatures, so make sure to consult the guidelines for your specific brand of plastic.
 

Polycarbonate is extremely hygroscopic, meaning it will absorb moisture from the air, which will affect its printing performance and strength. It should be stored in air-tight, moisture-free containers after opening. It also requires very high temperatures for printing and will exhibit layer separation if printed at too low of a temperature or with excessive cooling enabled. Polycarbonate is frequently best printed on a machine that has an enclosed build volume and is capable of handling high bed and extruder temperatures.

Positives

  • Impact resistant
  • High heat resistance
  • Naturally transparent
  • Bendable without breaking

Negatives

  • Requires very high print temperatures
  • Prone to warping
  • High tendency to ooze while printing
  • Absorbs moisture from the air which can cause print defects

Typical Hardware Requirements

Printer Bed

Temperature: 80-120 °C
Heated Bed Required
Enclosure Required

Build Surface

PEI
Commercial Adhesive
Glue Stick

Filament Extruder

Temperature: 260-310 °C
All-metal hotend required

Cooling Fan

Cooling Fan Not Required

Getting Started

Common Applications

  • High-strength parts
  • Heat resistant prints
  • Electronics cases

Popular Brands

  • Polymaker PC Plus, PC Max
  • Matterhackers Flameproof PC
  • eSun ePC

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