One issue that many people experience is their supports being too strong and hard to remove. This can cause issues and take a lot of time to remove, so I decided to write an article on how to fix it.
To fix supports that are too strong to remove, you should adjust specific support settings such as Support Density and Support X/Y Distance to make them less strong. You can also use strong tools like needle-nose pliers or flush cutters. Reducing print temperature can help, as well as using Tree Supports.
This is the basic answer on how to fix supports that are too strong to remove, so keep reading for more details.
How to Fix Supports too Strong to Remove – Easy Removal
These are the main ways to fix supports too strong to remove:
- Adjust support settings
- Use support removal aids
- Reduce hotend temperature
- Use tree supports
- Adjust orientation to reduce number of supports
1. Adjust Support Settings
One popular way to fix supports that are too strong to remove is to adjust support settings.
This is because tweaking the support settings can help strike a balance between stability and ease of removal.
The main settings to adjust supports are:
- Support X/Y Distance
- Support Z Distance
- Support Density
One user stated that if you adjust the support distance and density settings you will be able to print supports that are easy to be removed.
The reason for this is that increasing the distances can make supports looser and reducing the density will reduce the surface area to which the support attaches.
He also stated that you should consider using “Support Interface” to change the density right underneath and above the model.
You can enable “Support Interface” which generates a dense skin on the roof and floor of the support structure on which the model is printed. That will help supporting the bottom layer of the print better and leading to a more even surface.
Another user stated that lowering support density and using the “Support Interface” options are the best ways to fix supports that are too strong to remove.
Check out the video below for more information about this method.
2. Use Support Removal Aids
Another option to fix supports being too strong to remove is to use support removal aids as additional tools or materials may help with support removal.
These are the most popular tools used for support removal:
- Needle-nose pliers
- Flush cutters
- Heat Gun
Users recommend getting some needle-nose pliers to help you remove supports that are too strong.
One user also recommends using the scraper that comes with your 3D printer.
You can find some needle-nose pliers such as the VISEMAN 6″ Mini Needle Nose Pliers with Comfort Grip Handles on Amazon for a great price.
One user stated that the VISEMAN needle nose pliers are the best tool to remove supports as they are the right size for small prints while still fitting well in any hand.
Another user recommends using a Dremel to assist with the removal of strong supports. He stated that a Dremel sometimes can be the only way to get all the support out.
A Dremel can be found over at Amazon, such as the Dremel Lite 7760 N/10 4V Li-Ion Cordless Rotary Tool.
The Dremel Lite 7760 has great reviews, including one user who said this tool is perfect to cut out strong supports from 3D prints. One 3D printing hobbyist stated that flush cutters are the best tool for easy removal of supports.
He said that the flush cutters need to be sharp and he recommends buying new ones instead of sharpening old ones on your own.
You can find flush cutters for great prices over at Amazon, such as the IGAN-P6 Wire Flush Cutters. They are recommended by users as a great tool for support removal.
Check out the video below for more information about this method.
3. Reduce Hotend Temperature
Another method to fix supports that are too strong to remove is by reducing the printing temperature.
Lowering the temperature can affect the adhesion strength between the support material and the printed object, making it easier to remove the supports afterward.
You should be aware that reducing the temperature too much may compromise the overall print quality of the object.
That’s why it is important to experiment with gradual temperature adjustments to find the best balance between support removal and print quality.
Here are the steps to reduce the temperature:
- Access your 3D printer’s settings or slicing software and locate the hotend temperature settings.
- Lower the temperature a few degrees, typically in the range of 5 – 10°C.
- Print a test object with the adjusted temperature settings and check the ease of support removal.
If the supports are still too strong, repeat the process and continue to lower the temperature until the desired result is achieved.
One user stated that what causes supports to be too strong to remove is your hotend being too hot.
Another user recommends printing as cold as you can while still having good layer adhesion.
He said it’s because reducing heat reduces how well the support layer will stick to the model.
I wrote an article called How to Get the Perfect Printing & Bed Temperature Settings that may be useful to you.
4. Use Tree Supports
One popular way to print supports that can be easily removed is by using Tree Supports, which is an option that is available on Cura.
They are considered to be one of the best types of support available.
Tree Supports are a type of support that allows for easy removal and shouldn’t leave many marks on the printed model. Cura has recently released a new version of Tree Supports in their Cura 5.40 version.
Below is the older style Tree Supports.
Here is the new version of Tree Supports.
One user stated that they are the best because they use less material, take less time to print, and are very easy to remove.
Another user stated that while this support type works really well, it can be difficult to be removed if you are printing with silk filaments as they are much more brittle.
One 3D printing hobbyist stated that PrusaSlicer features a similar function to the Tree Supports on Cura which is called “Organic Supports”. He stated that it works just like the Cura version.
Check out the video below comparing tree supports and standard supports to find out which one is better.
5. Adjust Orientation to Reduce Number of Supports
Another effective way to fix supports that are too strong to remove is by adjusting the orientation of your model to reduce the number of required supports.
Proper orientation can minimize the contact points between the model and supports, making removal much easier.
Here’s how you can do it:
- Examine your 3D model and identify areas where supports are necessary.
- Use your slicing software to rotate and tilt the model to find the optimal orientation.
- Take advantage of features in your model that are self-supporting or require minimal support.
- Slice the model and print a test object.
- Evaluate the quality of the print and check if the supports are easier to remove.
By experimenting with different angles, you can minimize the need for supports or position them in easily removable areas.
Here is an example of a model that in its normal orientation requires a lot of supports but after changing the orientation and laying the model on the bed, it does not require any support to be printed.
You should be aware that finding the optimal orientation may require some trial and error, as it depends on the specific characteristics of your model.
One user stated that finding the optimal orientation of the model is the best way to reduce supports and make them easier to be removed.
Another user recommends using the software Autodesk Meshmixer to calculate the optimal orientation to minimize supports needed.
Check out the video below for more information about fixing supports that are too strong to be removed.