3D printers can print with many different kinds of materials, creating objects with surprising strength. Still, a critical consideration for all 3D printed projects is what type of infill will work best for that specific project.
Gyroid 3D print infill is strong, and it is one of the strongest infills available. Gyroid infill uses constantly curving lines that fill up the internal space of the 3D print. These lines create an infill stronger than many other patterns, so it is ideal for objects that need tensile strength.
The rest of this article will explain a few topics related to the gyroid 3D print infill, including why infills are essential in 3D printing, what makes the Gyroid 3D print infill unique, and some of the pros and cons of using a gyroid 3D print infill.
Why Is Infill Essential in 3D Printing?
Infill is essential in 3D printing since it provides an internal structure, or backbone, inside your 3D print, helping it stay intact no matter how much pressure you put on it. While decorative models might not need much infill, mechanical parts would break without it.
You may need a different type of infill for each project. To help you determine what pattern you should use, you may need to consider:
- How you plan to use your 3D print
- How much force you plan to put on your object
- Weight limitations
If you plan to print something with incredible durability that can withstand force and has a low weight, a gyroid infill might be the right choice for you. However, if you have other plans for your 3D printing project, you might need another pattern.
In addition to choosing the infill pattern, the creator must also determine what density to print with.
Printing an infill with a thicker density may be more robust but less pliable. It will also take more filament to create infill, which results in higher material costs, higher electrical costs, and a longer printing time.
On the other hand, thinner infill densities create more flexible prints that are not very durable.
What Makes Gyroid 3D Print Infill Unique?
Gyroid 3D print infill is unique since it is a naturally occurring structure found in cell membranes and butterfly wings. It distributes tension better than angular infill patterns.
The gyroid pattern was first discovered in 2017 by researchers working with graphene at MIT. Their results showed that using the gyroid pattern created a solid structure regardless of the type of material used to create the shape.
3D printers create gyroid infill as a constantly curving line that fills in the available space but doesn’t double back on itself. This pattern looks a bit like woven fabric, and it uses cross-sections to maximize your print’s strength.
This smooth curve improves the print’s resistance to tension when applying force from any direction. It also allows for a lower density of printing which reduces filament costs and decreases overall print time.
If you haven’t seen or used this infill pattern before, here’s a great video that shows what it looks like to print using a gyroid infill:
Pros and Cons of Using a Gyroid 3D Print Infill
Many creators turn to the gyroid infill pattern when making 3D prints for prototype and production purposes. Here are some of the pros and cons of using this infill pattern.
- It creates an (almost) isotropic structure. Printing with a gyroid infill pattern results in an almost truly isotropic design. That means that it is resistant to forces applied to any axis, unlike an infill pattern that is resistant along only a single axis.
- It is orientation-independent. With most 3D print infills, the final product can only withstand pressures applied in one direction. With the gyroid 3D infill, you can apply pressure from any side without damaging the printed item. So, when designing your infill, you can orient the gyroids in any direction you want, and your print will still be durable.
- Shorter printing time. The gyroid infill pattern prints much faster than other infill patterns. Compared to different patterns printed at the same density, the gyroid infill pattern will print more quickly by 2% and 5%.
- Less filament is needed. Since the gyroid structure is strong, you can use it at a much lower print density than other patterns. This lower print density means less filament is needed to complete the infill printing process.
- Lower end weight. Since less filament is needed, the final 3D print will weigh less than if you used other patterns for the infill. Gyroid infill creates a finished product that you can use in more locations without worrying about the overall weight.
- Beautiful design. Although you don’t typically see a 3D print infill pattern after the initial print job, internal aesthetics are essential to many 3D print designers. Some infill designs don’t include print perimeters which means the infill pattern will be visible in the final product. Gyroid infill has a sleek look that adds more detail to your print.
- High printer vibrations. Since the gyroid design is a continuously moving curve, the bed of the 3D printer is constantly moving as the filament extrudes across the project. These vibrations from constant movement can cause a print to fail if they become too severe. Still, you may be able to mitigate this problem by slowing down the print speed.
- Long slicing times. When printing in 3D, the final project is “sliced” down into individual layers. It may take a while for your slicer to break down a gyroid infill pattern since it curves, so you may lose time when you slice your models.
Gyroid infill creates a final product that is extremely strong and can withstand pressure from any direction. It also requires less filament than most other infill patterns, resulting in a faster print time and lower material costs. Using a gyroid infill is an excellent solution for any project that needs to be strong, and as a bonus, it makes for a quick print job.