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With over 17 FDM machines, "Fused Deposition Modeling" is C.ideas' primary in-house and preferred 3d prototyping & 3D printing process. FDM, is an extrusion based 3d modeling process that utilizes actual thermoplastics, such as; ABS, Ultem 9085, Polycarbonate & ABS/PC blends.

Perfect for fit, function & conceptual models that require durability, great thermal properties & RF friendly charcteristics. Aside from 3D Prints, FDM is an excellent process for DDM (Direct Digital Manufacturing), in which one or multiple parts, are required in an actual production grade thermoplastic.

C.ideas FDM parts can be produced in one of three resolutions. Standard; 0.010" layer slice (default), High Res; 0.007" layer slice (part size may limit resolution choice), or High Speed; 0.013" layer slice (typically used for extremely large volume parts).

C.ideas takes into consideration the overall strength, features and aesthetics when manually quoting your FDM parts. You may on occasion, see multiple line items for the same part indicating a different resolution or orientation. We do this in order to provide our customers the best part for their needs, all while considering their budget.

  • Ideal for Fit, form, function & DDM. FDM can also be used as trade-show and marketing models.

  • Excellent thermal properties ranging from 205f to 283f.

  • RF friendly for cellphone, electronic test fixtures, antenna and radome testing.

  • Durable and Weather resistant, for both, indoor and outdoor use.

  • The ABS plastic bonds extremely well to itself for sectioned parts.

  • Best Flat parts (do not warp or creep).

  • Highly accurate large parts.

  • Available in multiple colors.

  • Excellent repeatability (ABS) for DDM (Direct Digital Manufacturing) applications.

  • Typical Lead-times 1 to 3 days with same day service available in certain areas.

  • ABS models can be built up to: 36" x 24" x 36" (914mm x 610mm x 914mm). Larger models of virtually any size, can be sectioned and assembled upon completion.

  • ULTEM 9085, PC and PC/ABS models can be built up to: 36" x 24" x 36" (914mm x 610mm x 914mm). Larger models of virtually any size, can be sectioned and assembled upon completion.

  • High Speed Slice: 0.013" (900mc builds only)
    Standard Layer Slice: 0.010" (default build style)
    High Resolution Slice: 0.007"

  • Accuracy: +/- .005" for first 5 inches, +/- .0005" inch per inch thereafter (ABS). Same part repeatability (ABS) +/- .001"

  • In standard res mode, minimum recommended wall thickness is 0.032", in high res mode 0.020".

  • Smooth plastic surface with visible layer lines (resolution dependant), smoothest features are built vertically.

ABS: Best resolution & higher heat deflection than ABS/F1. White (std), available in multiple colors.
ABS/F1: Durable thermoplastic with good flexural modulus. High gloss natural (cream) or black.
ABS/PC Blend: Durable thermoplastic with good overall characteristics. High gloss black.
Polycarbonate: Durable thermoplastic with good overall characteristics. High gloss white.
Ultem 9085: Extremely durable chemically resistant high temp thermoplastic. High gloss gold/tan.

  • FDM instead of Polyjet
  • Much higher heat deflection than Polyjet parts, with larger buildable single piece parts. RF friendly thermoplastic materials (polyjet is not rf friendly). FDM bonds very well and are much stronger when assembling same material parts.

  • FDM instead of SLA
  • FDM parts are actual thermoplastic parts that do not creep or deteriorate over time due to UV light exposure. FDM (ABS) is more accurate on very large assemblies and parts that require being sectioned on multiple machines. Less brittle, better for heat staking brass inserts and ultra- sonic welding.

  • FDM instead of SLS
  • FDM is superior for large flat parts and assemblies that need to fit with the least amount of warp. FDM has a smoother less gritty feel and can be built with a sparse, honeycomb interior for material savings.

  • Most of the FDM models we produce are shipped once the support material is removed. However, some additional services are available.

  • Painting; Most models can be primed, sanded and painted to match a color chip or specific Pantone color.

  • FDM parts bond well with 2 part Epoxy, MEK, as well as, other solvents or glue.

  • Shielding; Parts can be sprayed with an EMI shield or Static dissipative coating.

  • Available metal coatings; vacuum metallizing, painted chrome (with different tints available) & electroplating in nickle, polished or unpolished. Call if a custom metal "look" is required.

  • Sealing; Parts can be sealed with a chemical solvent in order to smooth & seal surfaces for improved air and liquid retention.