- PLA (short for polylactic acid) is a plastic made of renewable starches such as corn and sugarcane.
- It is biodegradable and does not emit a lot of ultra fines particles (UFCs).
- It produces a barely noticeable, but quite pleasant, sugary smell when extruding.
- Depending on the specifications and the color, extrusion temperature can vary between 160 and 220 °C.
- Parts printed using PLA are more rigid than ABS parts (ABS is more flexible).
- In general, parts printed using PLA have a slightly glossy finish.
- PLA is less prone to warping during print and is much more ‘stickier’ than ABS.
- PLA starts to become malleable (heat deflection point) at around 60 °C.
- PLA requires a bit more force to be extruded as it has a higher coefficient of friction than ABS
What is the RepRap project?
The RepRap project started as a British initiative to develop a 3d Printer that itself can print most of its own components.
As an open design, all of the designs produced by the project are released under a the GNU General Public License (free open source license).
Due to "self-replication", the authors envisioned the possibility of cheaply distributing RepRap units to people and communities, enabling them to create (or download from the Internet).
More information can be found at RepRap.org.