Are 3D Printers Safe for the User?
3D printing technology is still a novelty. This may result in fears, doubts and questions. One of the most common questions pertains to safety: are 3D printers safe for their users? Is their operation detrimental to our health? These are reasonable questions, seeing as 3D printers are also used at home. Let us see how safe they are.
3D Printers and Health
We are flooded with results of research about how bad various technologies are for our health. In some cases this research comes to naught as one paper will contradict another. A number of such research projects were conducted with regard to 3D printing. Some came to the conclusion that dust was harmful, other emphasized that there was nothing to worry about.
The truth is that there actually are no reasons to be worried. With tried and tested 3d printers the process is not harmful for humans. Zortrax 3d printers boast certificates which prove that they meet health and environment norms. The same goes for the materials used in Zortrax 3d printers.
Of course, you have to remember that 3D printing is a process in which material is melted, so the 3D printer should be located in a place that has some space around and good ventilation. Still, you can have the 3D printer at home or in your office without providing any unique environment for it. If you want, you can add dedicated side panels for additional protection.
3D Printing and Overall Safety
3D printing with plug & play devices such as the Zortrax M200 and M300 3D printers is generally safe and easy. You just need to follow some basic rules, which are all logical once you get the hang of how the 3D printer operates. First of all, it heats up to a very high temperature, as much as 716 degrees F for the extruder and 230 degrees F for the platform. Touching either of these elements during operation will cause burns. You shouldn’t put your hand inside the 3D printer until it finishes printing and cools down. When removing the 3D printed model you should use dedicated tools. When I got my own Zortrax M200 3D printer, it came with a starter kit with protective gloves and tools which facilitate removing the item from the printer and applying finishing touches. Before you start using your 3D printer you should also read the manual to ensure that you can operate the printer safely and without mistakes.
Another safety-related issue is the placement of the 3D printer. It should be located on a stable base, such as a worktable or desk since toppling it could be dangerous (but these are the most basic safety rules). As electronic devices 3D printers have to be protected from overvoltage as well as too high and too low temperatures. This is also standard: in this aspect you operate a printer the way you’d operate a PC or TV and you won’t have any problems.
3D printing is also safe and uninvasive, you won’t have to continually monitor the process. The printer will shut down once it’s done. You can leave it alone for the duration and do other stuff without risk.
3D Printers are Safe
Even though 3D printers operate in very high temperatures so as to melt the material, there are no reasons why they should be dangerous for the user or their surroundings, especially if we look at Zortrax 3D printers. Both the printer and original materials are tested and comply with all norms. As long as you follow the user’s manual and common sense, the device is completely safe. Jest remember to put it in a room with normal airflow and a stable base. A few minutes later you’ll be able to start 3D printing without any worries.