Background: Three-dimensional (3D) printing is an emerging technology, capable of manufacturing a solid layer by layer. With the advancements of materials for 3D printing, this technology is applicable in almost every sector. But in accordance with the product requirements, we need to modify the mechanical properties of the material. To achieve a good surface finishing we require coating of filament. For this purpose, an apparatus is designed for the coating a material over a filament, which is capable of coating filaments uniformly and with an automated process.
Objective: The objective of the present invention is directed to a filament feeding device for applying uniform coating on a filament in order to make 3D solid objects with good quality finishing, thereby eliminating the chances of strains and imperfect coating on the filament.
Methods: The present invention relates to a filament feeding device, comprising a container equipped within the device for storing a chemical solution in a liquefied form. An inlet port is fabricated on the container for inserting a filament inside the container, and a number of relief valves are placed at a bottom portion of the container for controlling the leakage of the filaments during insertion of the filaments. A stepper motor in association with a blade is equipped within the container to rotate the main extruder of a 3D printer, and an outlet port is designed opposite to the inlet port for discharging the filament from the container for 3D printing of the filament in order to manufacture the solid object.
Results: The apparatus makes it easy for coating and coloration of materials to make the reinforced composite filaments. As this apparatus provides a uniform coating of material on the filaments, the product printed by filaments has a good surface finishing.
Conclusion: The proposed method can reduce coating time and printing time. This work provides meaningful implication to researchers who are doing research in the domain of additive manufacturing.