3D printing in Polypropylene - PP Natural

Polypropylene is the most widely used plastic in manufacturing and yet until recently if you wanted a prototype from this material your options were limited.

Well new developments in this material have just widened your design options. We can now cost effectively 3D print this material, using selective laser sintering, to produce a part quickly and cost effectively. It means that you can test your prototype for form and function and quickly reiterate and retest before committing to full manufacture.

Not only will this ensure that you get it right, but it could shave weeks or even months from your product development cycle.

  • 1 to 50+ parts
  • Shipped in 1 to 7 working days
Key Benefits
  • High Elongation at Break and Flexibility
  • Durability and Toughness
  • Low Weight

More Design Options

It also opens up your design horizons.  If you want to use this material for something a bit different you are no longer restricted by the manufacturing technology available.  3D printing enables you to design and produce whatever you want.  Whether it’s a honeycomb structure to save weight or organic shapes, the only limit is your imagination.

Why Polypropylene?

There is a good reason why polypropylene is such a popular material for products and parts.  It combines high durability and toughness with low weight.  It is also flexible, has a high elongation and excellent chemical resistance and electrical insulation.

Download our polypropylene product datasheet to find out more.

Choose your manufacturing technology…

It really is one of the most useful materials available to engineers.  Let’s take a car for example – fully 32% of all the plastic used in its construction is polypropylene.

Of course, 3D printing is not the only manufacturing option open to you. If you do not need a complex design or require high volumes then you may need to consider CNC machining or injection moulding.

The great thing about using Protolabs is that we offer all three technologies, so you will get unbiased advice on which is the best solution for you.

…and slash your product development time

It also means that we can shave weeks or even months from your total product development time.

From initial design and testing using 3D printing, through design for manufacturability analysis to ensure that your concept is suitable for mass manufacture, we can guide you through the entire process.  And if you have to wait weeks or even months for production tooling, we can even help you bridge that gap and develop bridge tooling to ensure that you get to market ahead of your competitors.

Read our blog to find out more.


Selective Laser Sintering Design Guidelines

Our Selective Laser Sintering design guidelines will help you understand the different capabilities and limitations and our design team is on hand to help you.

Selective Laser Sintering

Other 3D Printing Technology

Stereolithography is just one of an expanding range of additive manufacturing processes available from Protolabs that include:

Selective Laser Sintering (SLS): Laser-sintered nylon powder, creating 3D printed parts that are stronger and more heat-resistant.

Metal Multi Jet Fusion (MJF): Uses inking agents across a bed of nylon powder, to give smaller features and improved surface finish compared to SLS.

Direct Metal Laser Sintering (DMLS): Laser-welds powder alloys, creating nearly 100% dense metal parts with wrought-type properties.

Polyjet (PJ): Jets and UV cures droplets of photopolymer, with the ability to change select color or hardness throughout your part. Also available in a 65A 3D printed silicone.

a metal 3D printing technician removes support structures from a DMLS part

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