New features provide unexpected solutions.

Did you ever had an object, which required support at a specific spot? A nose or hand at a figurine? A prominent side of an object, which would be ruined by the roughness of support.

Well, there is adaptive layers in slicers now. “Wait a minute!”, you may say and you are right. This feature changes the layer height dynamically depending on the object to slice. This has nothing to do with supports, or has it?

On first sight it has not. It just creates more details where required, but there is a nice side effect. Ever printed flat surface at an angle? Right! The result is an ugly effect called stepping.

See this example of a flat plate, which I printed at an angle using adaptive layer height.

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Now lets look on the top surface, which should have bad stepping.

The top layer is perfect. It is even better than any flat surface, as its printing orientation is different. The adaptive layers made the top surface perfect. I should have used more infill or more walls as you can see the 15% of infill bulking a little.

But you may ask again, what has this to do with support? Well, beside the fact that I used supports at the bottom to create a superb top layer, nothing. :smiley:

[ATTACH=JSON]{“alt”:“Click image for larger version Name: AngledPillar_0.jpg Views: 1 Size: 63.5 KB ID: 16376”,“data-align”:“none”,“data-attachmentid”:“16376”,“data-size”:“medium”}[/ATTACH]

Now look at this organic shape. Ignore the “horns” at the top. I forgot to enable the layer cooling time along with the z-hop.

This object requires even supports to stand upright. Can you FDM print it in this orientation without adding support under the arc?

The answer is yes! Thanks to adaptive layer height! (See I got the curve back to the topic).

In fact the object you see was printed in the very same orientation.

[ATTACH=JSON]{“alt”:“Click image for larger version Name: AngledPillar_1.jpg Views: 1 Size: 74.2 KB ID: 16377”,“data-align”:“none”,“data-attachmentid”:“16377”,“data-size”:“small”}[/ATTACH] [ATTACH=JSON]{“alt”:“Click image for larger version Name: AngledPillar_2.jpg Views: 1 Size: 71.3 KB ID: 16378”,“data-align”:“none”,“data-attachmentid”:“16378”,“data-size”:“small”}[/ATTACH]

As you can see on the second image the back side is flawless. The trick is tilting it against the arc direction. On the first image you can see the support on the left bottom, while there is no support on the right bottom side. It would even stand upright without the brim, because we changed the orientation from flat at the bottom to angled without any lost of details.

The models where printed in ABS with my trusty AM8.

Before adaptive layer height existed, putting an object in an odd angle caused bad surfaces on other places due to stepping as a result. So by removing support by usinf an angle you lost quality at other locations of the model. With the new adaptive layer height feature you can tilt an object to avoid supports and even get better surfaces.

I think this is worth a try. Maybe someone with a better camera could even make a video about this stuff anyone can make with tech. :smiley:

Here is a more detailed image of the bracket surface. Due to the limitation of 5 images I was required to remove it in the previous post:


Very interesting post. Thanks for sharing.