Using PolyJet (PJ3D) additive manufacturing, Xometry can print multiple materials and properties on one part. This is used for simulating features like overmolds or co-molded geometries.
How to prepare a file for Multi-Material
Our machine operators can select and apply multiple materials to a single part as long as it has distinct shells. For example, the text in the images above actually are separate shells which we applied a translucent grey material. The outer border has a rubber-like material, and the main body is our rigid translucent/clear material. Here’s what it looks like from CAD.
- The Main Body
- The Extruded Text (Back)
- The Extruded Text (Front)
- The Outer Bumper
- The Final Assembly File (Ready for .stl export and upload)
If a part is to be printed in a multi-material, then the part is designed in CAD as an assembly. Each section of the part that is to be printed in a different material is created as its own part file, then integrated into the final assembly to make the multi-material part. Note: mated parts in the assembly should be flush to surfaces, any gaps will fill with support material and cause cosmetic or mechanical errors.
When the part is completed and ready for submission, Xometry requires that the assembly file is saved as a single part file with multiple bodies. STL format is preferred, but we can also accept other formats such as sldprt, ipt, or STEP. Xometry does not accept assembly files. This allows all the parts to be contained and managed easily in a single part file.
During production, parts are built just as a normal, single material PJ3D part, but with the print head depositing multiple materials at the same time instead of just one.
Xometry offers PJ3D parts in a wide array of materials ranging from translucent rubber-like to rigid black. Multi-material parts can incorporate as many of the materials that are desired.
Check out the full list of PJ3D material options here: https://www.xometry.com/polyjet-materials/