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best pla filaments

The Best PLA Filaments in 2021

Author: Robert Wilson

Electronics & Peripherals Expert

Welcome to our big Filament Test. Here we present you all of the filaments that we have tested. We have put together detailed background information for you.

We want to make the purchase decision easier for you and help you find the best filament for you.

You can also find answers to frequently asked questions in our guide. You will also find some important information on this page that you should definitely pay attention to if you want to buy filament.

  • Filaments are cord-like printing materials that 3D printers need to manufacture objects. Filaments can be made of different materials.
  • The most commonly used filament is made of ABS or PLA, but there is a whole range of other materials such as wood, nylon, flexible PLA, etc.
  • Filaments are available in different price ranges and qualities. They are usually sold in rolls of 1 kg

Best PLA Filaments

TECBEARS PLA 3D Printer Filament 1.75mm Black+ White

TECBEARS PLA 3D Printer Filament 1.75mm Black+ White
  • [Premium PLA Filament] TECBEARS PLA 3D filament has the…
  • [Clog-free & Bubble-Free] Completely dried for 24 hours…
  • [Less-tangle & Wide Compatibility] Full mechanical winding…
  • [Dimensional Accuracy & Consistency] Advanced CCD diameter…
  • [Printing Tips] Recommended Extrusion/Nozzle Temperature…

PLA+ 3D Printer Filament 1.75mm

PLA+ 3D Printer Filament 1.75mm
  • ①【PLA+ Advantages】→ PLA+ filament is stronger than…
  • ②【Spool Diameter】→ Spool Diameter: 8.00″, Spool…
  • ③【1.75mm Diameter】→ Dimensional Accuracy +/- 0.02mm….
  • ④【Recommend Settings】→ We recommend printing at a…
  • ⑤【Professional Team】→ SUNLU is a high-tech…

OVERTURE PLA Filament 1.75mm with 3D Build Surface

OVERTURE PLA Filament 1.75mm with 3D Build Surface
  • [1 kg PLA Spool x 1 & Build Surface x 1] — Each PLA spool…
  • [Clog-Free & Bubble-Free] — Designed and Manufactured with…
  • [Less -tangle and Easy to Use]– Full mechanical winding and…
  • [Dimensional Accuracy & Consistency] — advanced CCD…
  • [Cost-effective and Wide Compatibility] — With over 8…

Shiny Silk Gold Silver Copper PLA Filament Bundle

 Our Pick
Shiny Silk Gold Silver Copper PLA Filament Bundle
  • Popular Silk Metal Colors:Include Silk Filament…
  • Strong Compatibility:High Quality, No Bubble, Low…
  • Package: Pack Contains 3 Spools, Each Spool Contains…
  • Extra Gift: One Premium Quality 3D Print Remove Tool…
  • Warranty & Notice:We are Confident about PLA Filament…

HATCHBOX PLA 3D Printer Filament - Black

HATCHBOX PLA 3D Printer Filament – Black
  • 1 KG (approximately 2.20 lbs) Spool
  • 1.75mm Filament Diameter (Dimensional Accuracy +/- 0.03mm)
  • PLA (Polylactic Acid) 3D Printer Filament Vacuumed Sealed…
  • Recommended Extrusion/Nozzle Temperature 180°C – 220°C
  • Spool Diameter: 7.88″ – Spool Width: 2.69″ – Spool Hub Hole…

HATCHBOX PLA 3D Printer Filament - Orange

HATCHBOX PLA 3D Printer Filament – Orange
  • 1 KG (approximately 2.20 lbs) Spool
  • 1.75mm Filament Diameter (Dimensional Accuracy +/- 0.03mm)
  • PLA (Polylactic Acid) 3D Printer Filament Vacuumed Sealed…
  • Recommended Extrusion/Nozzle Temperature 180°C – 210°C…
  • Spool Diameter: 7.88″ – Spool Width: 2.69″ – Spool Hub Hole…

AmazonBasics PLA 3D Printer Filament - Neon Green

AmazonBasics PLA 3D Printer Filament – Neon Green
  • 3D printer filament (1.75mm diameter, neon green; 1 kg…
  • Made of PLA, a commonly used thermoplastic material known…
  • Engineered to reduce jamming
  • Backed by an Amazon Basics 1-year limited warranty

AmazonBasics TPU 3D Printer Filament - Blue

AmazonBasics TPU 3D Printer Filament – Blue
  • 3D printer filament with 1.75mm diameter + / – .05mm;…
  • Made of strong yet flexible thermoplastic polyurethane…
  • Spool’s built-in gauge shows percentage of material…
  • Engineered to reduce jamming; resealable storage bag…
  • Measures 9.8 by 9.3 by 16.1 inches (LxWxH); weighs 2.2…

Frequently Asked Questions: PLA Filaments

Which filament types are there?

There is now a huge range of different filament types made from a wide variety of materials. In addition, the filaments also differ in their strength. Depending on which 3D printer you have, you can process different types of filament.

ABS and PLA filaments are particularly well-known and popular. Almost every 3D printer can process either or both of these materials. Both are made of thermoplastic. The special thing about this material: At high temperatures, thermoplastic becomes liquid and can therefore be processed by your 3D printer.

You can buy most plastic filaments in a wide variety of colors and special mixtures. Another highlight among the plastic filaments is flexible PLA – this filament remains elastic after 3D printing, so that rubber gloves, for example, can also be printed with this material.

Furthermore, there are now all kinds of materials on the market. For example, you can use wood filament to print objects that have a very real-looking grain. There are also various metal filaments, for example made of aluminum, steel, iron or titanium.

3D printing with food is now also possible. For example, you can print a beautiful figure out of chocolate.

Printing material can be purchased in two different filament thicknesses: On the one hand, there is materials with a smaller diameter of 1.75 millimeters or with a larger diameter of 2.85 or 3 millimeters.

How much filament do I need for a 3D print?

Unfortunately, this cannot be answered across the board – because consumption depends largely on the type of filament, the object you want to print and your 3D printer. It is also crucial which layer thickness you choose for 3D printing.

Nevertheless, as is well known, there is a solution for (almost) everything on the Internet. The filament calculator helps you to calculate how much filament the 3D printing will use for your individual object.

How stable is filament?

The stability depends on the material of the filament. PLA, for example, is more sensitive to heat and becomes soft at 60 degrees Celsius. ABS, on the other hand, is more dimensionally stable and only changes its consistency from around 80 degrees Celsius.

Most filaments are ideally suited for hobby and hobbyist needs because of their stability. Many 3D printing media are also suitable for spare parts, but before 3D printing you should make sure that the material chosen for your object meets your requirements.

Types of Filament

Basically, one can distinguish between two main types of filaments:

  • ABS filament
  • PLA filament

The two different types of filaments differ in their material composition and each have their own advantages and disadvantages. ABS and PLA are the most commonly used filaments. These can also be found in special filaments.

Here they are mixed with other fabrics to create filaments that are used in different areas to give your own creation a certain look, e.g. To lend wood, sandstone or metal. Depending on what things you value most, a different type of filament will work best for you.

In the following section we would like to help you find out which filament is best for you. We will introduce you to the two types of filaments mentioned above and clearly show what their advantages and disadvantages are.

ABS Filament: Advantages & Disadvantages

ABS, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene, is a synthetic polymer that belongs to the group of thermoplastics and is one of the most common plastics in the world.

ABS scores with the following properties: high achievable stiffness, toughness and strength and is generally very impact and scratch resistant. Thanks to its relatively soft surface hardness, ABS is very well suited for post-processing: sawing, milling, varnishing, painting, gluing, grinding and drilling are therefore no problem. It is also particularly resistant to oils, greases and high temperatures.

Advantages

  • Resilient
  • High rigidity, toughness and strength

Disadvantages

  • Moderate weather resistance
  • Warping
  • Unpleasant smell

One of the few disadvantages is the moderate weather resistance – still many times higher than PLA. The weaknesses are mainly to be found in the low UV resistance, which means that ABS yellows quickly and also becomes brittle if it is exposed to UV for too long. Furthermore, ABS tends to warping due to its thermal properties. This means that the corners and edges could loosen, warp or shrink during printing.

It should also be noted that ABS has an unpleasant smell and develops a dark smoke that smells of scorching plastic. It is best not to inhale this. It is therefore important to ensure adequate ventilation during the printing process.

PLA Filament: Advantages & Disadvantages

PLA, polylactide, are synthetic polymers that belong to the polyesters. The raw material is obtained from regenerative sources such as Corn starch and is therefore biocompatible. Along with ABS, PLA is one of the most widely used plastics in the filament market.

PLA is primarily characterized by its biocompatibility, which makes the plastic food-safe. It is less brittle, has hardly any warpage and can also be used with 3D printers without a heatable print bed.

Advantages

  • Biocompatibility
  • High surface hardness and rigidity

Disadvantages

  • Moderate impact resistance
  • Moderate temperature and weather resistance

The low moisture absorption of the raw material ensures easier storage and high UV resistance, as well as low flammability. Basically, PLA has a high surface hardness, rigidity and tensile strength, but only moderate impact resistance.

PLA is moderately temperature and weather resistant. The dimensional stability is around 65 degrees, i.e. PLA is the wrong raw material for thermally intensive applications and objects.

PLA Filament: Purchase Criteria

In order to be able to decide which filament is the right one for you, we present some factors below, which you can use to compare and evaluate 3D printing materials.

These are the following purchase criteria:

  • Type
  • Printing Temperature
  • Diameter
  • Available Colors
  • Heatable Print Bed

Here you can read how you can use the individual purchase criteria to evaluate which filament is right for you.

Type

The most important factor when buying is the type of filament – is it ABS, PLA, flexible PLA, nylon, wood, …? In order to achieve optimal printing results, you should of course know which printing materials your 3D printer can process.

The most common filaments are made of ABS or PLA. As soon as you know which filament can be processed by your 3D printer, you can choose your printing medium accordingly.

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Printing Temperature

The printing temperature is crucial for a successful print. If the temperature is too hot, the result will be imprecise and fuzzy. If the temperature is too cool, the individual layers will not bond properly and will therefore not adhere.

The correct printing temperature for the filament varies from manufacturer to manufacturer. It is true that temperature ranges are often specified in the product description in which the filament can be processed. Often, however, this means that you have to determine the exact temperature yourself by trying it out. It often depends on one or two degrees colder or warmer how good your 3D printing result will be.

When buying the filament, you should make sure that your 3D printer can be set to the printing temperature range specified by the printing material manufacturer. This way you can be sure that you can actually process the filament you have bought.

Diameter

Filament is available in different strengths and diameters. The most common dimensions are 1.75 or 2.85 or 3 millimeters.

Often the filaments are “only” 2.85 millimeters thick with the specified 3 millimeters. This is because with many 3D printers the feed to the extruder is exactly three millimeters. A print medium with a filament thickness of a little less than three millimeters is required for the smooth supply.

If your 3D printer can process 1.75 mm and 3.00 mm thick filament, it is often a matter of taste which thickness you use. The filament thickness has only a minimal influence on the accuracy of the printed object, as the printing medium is melted and brought to the same layer thickness by the printing nozzle.

Available Colors

With most filaments you have a large selection of colors – this can be especially worthwhile if you want to work creatively with your 3D printer. That is why it can be crucial which colors a filament is available in.

You may also want to print in multiple colors with your 3D printer, i.e. insert different colors one after the other during the printing process.

It often makes sense to use filament from one brand so that the different colored layers can optimally connect. This can also be a reason to pay attention to the color range of a filament manufacturer.

Heatable Print Bed

With some printing materials it can be advantageous or even necessary to use the heated print bed of your 3D printer. ABS, for example, should not be processed with a 3D printer that does not have a heatable print bed.

Even with PLA filaments, it can make sense to use the heatable print bed during the printing process. For example, the heat from below can make other adhesive materials, such as adhesive pads or glue sticks, superfluous.

In order to produce optimal printing results with your filament, the manufacturer often specifies a temperature range for the heated printing board. If you want to print as comfortably as possible and want good results, when buying filament you should make sure that you can set the appropriate temperature for your print bed on your 3D printer.

Facts about PLA Filaments

Can I make my own filament?

Many who work with 3D printers have asked themselves whether misprints can be reprocessed or whether filament can be made from other plastics that would be thrown away.

Kickstarter projects make this possible: Filabot or Filastruder manage to recycle plastic from shampoo bottles or product packaging in order to produce new filament for your 3D printing. You can buy the devices or the individual parts on the Internet, but they are not cheap.

Last product update on 2021-01-16 | Source: Amazon Affiliate