[Prusa]’s Nozzle Prints Polycarbonate, PEEK, & Nylon

Oh, we’ve been sitting on this one for a while.

[Josef Prusa], brainchild behind what is probably the most popular 3D printer, has just unleashed a new hot end that is capable of printing objects in polycarbonate, PEEK, and nylon.

This new hot end is completely made out of stainless steel – there are no plastic parts made out PTFE or PEEK to keep the heat from transferring up to the extruder. Because the Prusa Nozzle can print these plastics, it’s also now possible to print parts for other hot ends such as the J Head and the Budaschnozzle.

We ran into [Prusa] at NYC Maker Faire a few months ago, and he was kind enough to go over the advancements in his new nozzle and new i3 printer. So far, it looks like the lack of a PEEK insulator isn’t doing the new hot end any harm – [Prusa] has left molten plastic in the nozzle for a few hours and nothing bad has come of it.

You can check out the interview below.


Again, thanks to [Prusa] for granting us an interview and providing some free advertising for Hackaday’s hosts for the NYC Maker Faire. Before you complain about the delay in getting this interview out to you, don’t worry; I slapped a few Makerbot stickers on the back of [Prusa]’s jacket. Everything’s cool.

42 thoughts on “[Prusa]’s Nozzle Prints Polycarbonate, PEEK, & Nylon

      1. That’s assuming it’s about temperature ranges and not the internal construction of the extruder (if you watch the vid again Jo will explain this to you). the trouble with commercial 3D printers is the marketing talk and manipulation of stats used, especially by makerbot.
        e.g. “The replicator 2 has a layer resolution of 100 microns (.1mm)” every 3D printer has a “layer resolution” of the distance manually set between the the nozzle and the build plate combined with the raise setting on the motors (they all use the same NEMA17 motors and have the same accuracy per step)

        The real minimum resolution of a 3d printer is dictated by the aperture hole on the extruder nozzle, which again is pretty much the same on all makes and models at this stage.

        Bre Pettis himself said that the Replicatior 2 motors and extruder were identical to the Replicator (talk at OHWS). It’s all hipster marketing bullshit.

        Prusa if a proper hacker who invents stuff, yet thingiverse community practically formed a lynchmob when he announced he was no longer freely offering his work to makerbot without attribution, as specified in their sneakily updated TOS.

        Prusa/Bower = Tesla
        Pettis = Edison

        1. I don’t care about the Makerbot-versus-OSH conflict, marketing-speak is annoying but I can’t really blame MakerBot for it, the DIY niche is nothing like large enough to support continued growth.

          I am just talking about the hotend design. I have ALREADY printed with nylon in a Makerbot hotend, as well retrofitted other all-metal designs for the same. It’s really not hard at all if you understand a little thermodynamics and viscous fluid physics.
          I have a RepRap and a MakerBot, and they get along great. The MakerBot prints reprap parts all the time, and the RepRap goes under the knife for crazy upgrades.

          I do not mean to detract from Prusa’s invention, it looks great. I met him at MakerFaire and exchanged ideas already, I have no doubt it performs as advertised.

          1. Thanks to share your nylon printing experience with the community. perhaps a working video demo or a extruder modification guide? As you’ve done this ALREADY perhaps you can save a duplication of effort by not keeping it to yourself.

      1. I think the obvious answer is to do interviews somewhere quiet! Couldn’t you have taken Josef and his printer to a quiet room later on? I’m interested but can’t make out a thing he’s saying!

    1. Yes, fishing lines and weedwhacker lines are usually nylon. However, they are fiberglass impregnated, and fiberglass will NOT work through the extruder, it will eventually jam the nozzle, and removal is very difficult.

  1. Besides the incredibly annoying background noise. Cool! We can print POOK now. But more importantly, the problem of plastics fusing and ruining a print head sound like a thing of the past. Me want.

  2. Sweet, I just got my lathe out of storage this last weekend. I wonder how well the change to stainless stops heat transfer to the top?

    I’m building a 80/20 400mm cubed brute of a printer and I might just add two of these as my hot ends!

  3. This is not a fair assessment of him or his product but it’s all I have to go on. Between the bad interview and the NON informative website I get a bad felling about this product.

    If I had a new product to show off I would have good product image, videos and some data about the product. Not just links to FB

    Same old story, engineers make bad marketers.

      1. Thank you for clarifying this for people. Most of us creative types are one-man-shows. We don’t all have a team of people to film high-quality video, monitor social media, run a marketing campaign, update our web presence, and more. We just want to make stuff and share it, at least until people abuse that too.

  4. I tried making a metal only hot-end using stainless-steel as the insulator, but brass and aluminium as the nozzle and heater-block respectively. What I found was the filament, when near melting point, would get rubbery and expand when pushed into the hot-end. When this happened it would grip the machining marks inside the stainless insulator and jam. I got around this by adding a PTFE insert. I wonder if he had a similar problem and what his solution was.

  5. Let’s see someone with a hot end that can print with polysulfone xD We manufacture some extremely precise components at work with the stuff, temperatures of 600F+ are required for it to flow.

    Actually, given the lower temps of the materials listed here, you could use polysulfone as an insulator potentially…. Of course I know nothing about 3D printing, and my experience in injection molding is only about 7 months, so far.

  6. From my experience of drilling stainless with both lathe and drill-press is that it is extremely difficult. I wonder how you would get that tiny hole in there… would you need a carbide bit?

    1. I’m just speculating here, but the nozzle wouldn’t need to be stainless. You could start with a 3mm ID stainless tube and put a “blob” of mild steel weld on the end, then drill that out.

  7. Sigh.. do I have to be That Guy again? That’s not what brainchild means- it means something more like “invention”. “The Mendel is the brainchild of Josef Prusa” would be nearer the mark.

    Hackaday, I love you but your proofreading and apparent grasp of the english language is so awful that I still can’t tell whether you’re doing it on purpose just to spite grammar pedants.

    1. you might want to be that guy, but you’re also wrong, the mendel isn’t the brainchild of Josef, the specific varient of the mendel printer, (the prussa) is.

      hence his tee shirt, everyone is a maker but only he is a printer.

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