Gluing and smoothing PLA

Any suggestions on what to use?

I am sure superglue will work. but looking for something that works like the ABS cements…chemically melting/bonding the plastics together.

and something to smooth the PLA, like Acetone does for ABS would be useful too. Any ideas?

Have you come across this?

I bookmarked it a while back, I think from a hackaday article.

Results look good, but needs some good ventilation.

It won’t help with the smoothing part, but for gluing, I’ve seen several people saying friction stir welding works great for this. Basically, stick a length of PLA in a Dremel or other rotary tool and let the tip of the filament spin against the joint you want to weld. The friction creates enough heat to melt the tip of the PLA rod as well as a bit of the printed parts, which then rejoin into a solid piece of PLA as it cools.

There’s a YouTube video of someone trying it her:

I’ve seen this technique work excellently for metal and it makes sense that it could work for PLA as well. I haven’t tried it myself, but it’s something I have on my list of things to try eventually.

  • Adam

That’s perfect…looks like THF is it