3D Printing Hot Stuff

We've been reading a post from BFB in which they've offered another christmas 3D model free for download as part of their Advent Calendar program. It's a tea light holder. The item holds one of those standard-sized metal candle holders, which of course, you ignite and enjoy.
But this got us thinking. Should 3D prints be subjected to heat? Forged in heat themselves, applying heat could have some slightly negative effects: 
  • Plastic objects may distort under heat
  • Portions of the object may be destroyed
  • Some plastics may actually ignite if exposed to sufficient heat (+416C for ABS)
And there's another possible issue: some plastics, like the ABS commonly used in 3D printers, may in fact be toxic. Heat may release some nasty compounds. 
Back to the candle holder. Safe or not? We say safe, as the heat of the candle is somewhat distant from the plastic, insulated by wax and metal. 
Our advice? Be very careful with any 3D prints exposed to heat, especially ABS. 

General Fabb

Kerry Stevenson, aka "General Fabb" has been writing Fabbaloo posts since he launched the venture in 2007, with an intention to promote and grow the incredible technology of 3D printing across the world. So far, it seems to be working!