How to print with Ultimaker PC

PC (polycarbonate) is a very strong and tough material that can be used for various engineering applications. Here are guidelines for getting started with Ultimaker PC and to achieve the best 3D print results.

Please note that the preconfigured Cura profiles for Ultimaker PC have been exclusively developed for the Ultimaker 2+ and Ultimaker 2 Extended+. The instructions on this page are for these 3D printers only. Printing with this material on other Ultimaker printers is at the users risk; is not supported and may void the warranty. Always use the latest version of Cura (2.1.3 or higher) and make sure that your 3D printer is updated with the latest firmware version to include the correct material profile for Ultimaker PC.

Recommended Settings

Temperatures

The nozzle temperature for printing with Ultimaker PC should always be 260 °C and the build plate temperature should be 110 – 115 °C.

Nozzle diameter (mm) Nozzle temperature (°C)  Build plate temperature (°C)  Print cooling fan speed (%)  
0.25260110-1150
0.4260110-1150
0.6260110-1150
0.8260110-11525

These temperatures are used for Ultimaker PC print profiles in Cura (version 2.1.3 or higher) for the Ultimaker 2+ and Ultimaker 2 Extended+. For best results, it is crucial to select the right printer, nozzle diameter and material type in Cura. Also, make sure you have selected the correct material on your Ultimaker 3D printer.

Cooling

None of the preconfigured Ultimaker PC Cura profiles requires print fan cooling except for the 0.8 mm nozzle. The regular print cooling fan speed for the 0.8 mm nozzle is 25%, as the amount of extruded material is much higher and it cools slower. For optimal results for small layers, the print cooling fan speed is gradually increased to 50%.

Cura Adhesion Settings

It is highly recommended to use a raft when 3D printing a large model. In the Cura profiles, the raft is selected as the default build plate adhesion method for Ultimaker PC. This will put a grid structure between the 3D print and build plate, that allows for better adhesion. The raft will additionally lead to a more even distribution of temperature through the initial layers of the 3D print. After the 3D print is finished, the raft can be removed. If the build plate is still warm, removing the raft will be easier. A brim can be sufficient for adhesion when 3D printing small models.

Adhesion

PC is not an easy-to-print material because it tends to warp and delaminate if the printing environment and settings are not perfect. We strongly recommend using the adhesion sheets included in the Advanced 3D Printing Kit to achieve the best adhesion to the build plate when printing Ultimaker PC. Alternatively, you can apply a thin layer of glue (included in the accessory box of your 3D printer) to the glass plate but the adhesion won’t be as reliable as with the adhesion sheets.

For more tips on how to improve the build plate adhesion, see this page.

Accessories

Use of the adhesion sheets and the door included in the Advanced 3D Printing Kit is strongly recommended when printing with Ultimaker PC. The use of the adhesion sheets included in the kit ensures optimal adhesion to the build plate. The use of the door will ensure a controlled environment inside the 3D printer, with a stable temperature of about 45 ºC. This provides a higher print success rate, better quality and performance of the printed parts.

Health and Safety

Ultimaker PC is safe to print when using the recommended temperature settings listed above. To ensure a comfortable and healthy environment, we recommend 3D printing in a well-ventilated area.

For more information, download the safety data sheet for Ultimaker PC here.

NOTE: The information provided here applies to Ultimaker PC, but may apply to PC filaments from other suppliers. The use of PC from other suppliers is not covered by the Ultimaker warranty.

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