For those who--want to--print with .105 trimmer line

I’ve started to venture into printing with trimmer line (the stuff that a weed eater whips around to cut tall grass). Most of the filaments I’ve used for trimming are of decent quality and consistentcy and are almost exclusively made from nylon copolymers. This could be an affordable way to dial in nylon settings before switching over to the more expensive Taulman nylons for final production of prints. That said here is a weird anomaly that has become a possible gem that could make printing in nylon the cheapest filament option out there–kind of excited I hope this stuff works out. :smiley:
It’s a little less than $9 for a 3 pound spool! It seems weird because the 5 pound rolls are more than double so I ordered two rolls and they will be prime shipped to me by Thursday. As soon as I get them in I’ll do some calibration prints and see how it goes.

Anyone out there printing with nylon trimmer line have any tips, tricks, or advice? I’d appreciate any comments.

The problem with printing with material not developed for 3d printing is the additives used, and the potential side effects of heating them up to extrusion temperature.

When some nylon is heated past a certain point, it releases Hydrogen Cyanide gas (HCN).

There was 0.1ppm of HCN while printing with a “Non-3D Printing” material (Trimmer Line)

The only way HCN contamination was measured was by printing with Weed Whacker / Trim line. This is highly recycled and uncontrolled; contains many other contaminants.
Weed Wacker / Trim Line HCN Concentration: 0.1ppm,141946,141946

Oh dang! Thanks Orias I owe you big time. Should I take the thread down?

Nope :smiley: bytes are free and we all learn from reading the info in the forum.

So I did some searching around and I printed in a laboratory fume hood and the trimmer line seems to work great so far.
It holds a bit of artifacts but noting that I would consider bad.

Those look nice! Very interesting… Maybe in a jam I might have to try it.

I’ve heard of folks using trimmer line with my other printer… But no one ever produced pictures.

Thanks for sharing.

It seems to work out pretty well. I would think outside of what is off gassed the biggest think I look out for when finding filament is if there are additives in the line to make it more abrasive like fiber glass that could clog up or grind away my nozzle. I think the cheap stuff is better/safer for the machine, as there isn’t money spent on as many additives.

What I’ve noticed after 50+ hours of printing with this stuff:
The dimensions run a little expanded, about 0.01-0.03mm bigger on outer dimensions and same thing but smaller on inner dimensions.
It has an issue with contraction. I can’t always get it to stick down to PET with Elmer’s glue and when it does stick it can lift the PET from the glass. An enclosure helps out tremendously I’m hoping a PEI sheet will also fix the issue. It will also contract on really sharp overhangs. I noticed the problem when going from 60° to 70°.
It is stringy, not oozy so it’s not that bad.
Really smooth prints that can run at high speeds.
Overhangs up to 60° are not a problem.
dimensional difference is still within 10% of the nozzle size

Here is a print speed sample.

PEI sheet will also fix the issue. It will also contract on really sharp overhangs. I noticed the problem when going from 60° to 70???

No way, that’s awesome. I’ve only been in 3d printing for about a year and a half, although I wanted to get into it long before.

I’d always thought they just used 3mm as a “flexible enough to move, thick enough to grip” type thing. Nice to know the origin.