It’s been a really long time coming, but we now have a purpose-built sintering vessel for 3d printed metal. The Aluma crucibles that we sell in our store work well, but they are very expensive and aren’t quite ideal. This project was to bring a more suitable vessel online and make it available at the scale of our current customer demand. Oh, also, less expensive. We haven’t settled on a retail price yet, we only know that it will be lower than the Aluma versions currently in the store.
This version is also designed to distribute heat more evenly than the Aluma ones. These have a lot more mass to them. They heat more slowly, but also more evenly than other solutions we’ve tested. Intra container heat distribution can be a challenge. I don’t expect this product to completely solve the issue, but it will create a much wider margin of error for you to work within.
The magic recipe, after dozens of experiments is this:
4 parts Green Stripe Fireclay to
1 part ground borosilicate glass
(It looks so simple once complete)
They key elements of the recipe are a very low COE (coefficient of expansion), very little porosity and enough mass to heat evenly. Some of my tests were porous enough for gasses to pass through the clay which is a deal breaker (oxygen) during the sintering cycle (with metals anyway). By adding the glass powder we’ve gotten to a very solid body with little to no open-cell porosity.
We have a handful of these going out for testing but we could use a few more beta testers. I’ll send a few more to people that express interest. I only request that you be an active user at this moment. Please don’t request one if you won’t be using it immediately.