PETG Filament for 3D Printing: What Is It and Why Use It

  • Updated: July 08, 2024

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Michael Yu

As a compound talent with History, Filmmaking, and Digital Manufacturing background, Michael Yu has dedicated his life to dispelling misconceptions about the manufacturing sector and transforming it into a fascinating and competent industry.
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The length of many proper names makes them difficult to pronounce, especially when it comes to composite materials whose names are often so long that their creators have to use acronyms to refer to them.

PETG, stands for polythylene, terephthalete and glycol, is one of those typical things.

This article will guide you understand what it is, what makes it different, and why it is widely used in 3D printing.

Basic Information about PETG

By this part, I’ll explain what is PETG, how PETG is manufactured, and its properties(includes strength and weakness).

What is PETG?

XMAKE- what is PETG

Polyethylene terephthalate glycol modified(Known as PETG or PET-G), which is a type of thermoplastic polyester resin and a kind of copolymer of PET and ethylene glycol.

It is a versatile material that is commonly used in 3D printing, as well as in the manufacturing of food and beverage containers, medical devices, and other consumer products.

PETG material is known for its high impact resistance, clarity, and ease of processing. Due to its chemical structure, it is more resistant to chemicals and higher temperatures compared to traditional PET materials.

Properties of PET With Glycol

XMAKE-properties of PETG

Transparency and Clarity

This material is known for its excellent optical clarity, making it a popular choice for applications where visibility is important. Whether used for packaging, signage, or display cases, PETG provides a clear view of the contents inside.

This optical clarity also makes it a preferred material for 3D printing, as it allows for precise design details to show through in the finished product.

Impact Resistance

Its impact resistance makes it an excellent choice for products that require strength and durability and able to withstand wear and tear.

This material is able to withstand strong impacts without breaking or cracking, providing a reliable solution for use in industries such as automotive, construction, and packaging.

Chemical Resistance

Excellent resistance to chemicals makes it a popular material choice for a variety of applications involves exposure to various chemicals and solvents.

This polymer is resistant to a wide range of chemicals, including acids, alkalis, and solvents, making it suitable for use in harsh environments where other materials may not hold up.

Weather Resistance

PETG has excellent weather resistance, as it can withstand exposure to sunlight, rain, and other environmental factors without degrading or losing its structural integrity.

Whether used for signage, displays, or outdoor fixtures, PETG is known for its ability to maintain its appearance and function over time.

Properties of PETG
Properties Explanation and Use
Transparency and Clarity
  • Provides a clear view of the contents inside
  • Precise design details to show through in the finished product
Impact Resistance
  • Withstand wear and tear
  • Withstand strong impacts without breaking or cracking
Chemical Resistance
  • Exposure to various chemicals and solvents
  • Resist chemicals and harsh environment
Weather Resistance
  • Withstand exposure to sunlight, rain, and other environmental factors
  • Maintain appearance and function over time without degrading or losing its structural integrity

Advantages

When it comes to packaging and manufacturing, PETG has become a popular choice due to its various advantages.

Cost-effective: One of the key benefits of PETG is that it is cost-effective compared to other materials. This makes it ideal option for companies looking to reduce production costs without compromising on quality.

Easy to thermoform: PETG has low thermoform operation requirements, allowing manufacturers to create complex shapes and designs with ease.

Environmentally-friendly: PETG is environmentally-friendly as it is a recyclable material. This means that it can be reused multiple times, reducing waste and minimizing the impact on the environment.

By choosing PETG for packaging and manufacturing needs, businesses can demonstrate their commitment to sustainability and eco-friendliness.

Limitations

Even though PETG has many advantages, it is also known for several weaknesses.

Susceptibility to scratching: PETG is not as scratch-resistant as some other plastics, which can lead to visible marks and damage over time, especially in high-traffic areas or in applications where the material is frequently handled.

Poor resistance to high temperatures: Although PETG can withstand sunlight and other harsh envrionments, it is still not a kind of material with good thermal suitability or good temperature resistance.

Lower melting point compared to other plastics like ABS or polycarbonate makes PETG may not be suitable for applications where exposure to high temperatures and mass thermal energies is concerned.

Limited chemical versatility: While it is resistant to some common chemicals, such as household cleaners, it may not hold up well against harsher chemicals or solvents. This can limit its usability in certain industrial or chemical environments.

Pros and Cons
Advantages Disadvantages
  • Cost-Effective
  • Easy to Thermoform
  • Environmentally-Friendly and Easily Recycable
  • Susceptibility to Scratching
  • Poor Rresistance to High Temperatures
  • Limited Resistance to certain Chemicals

3D Printing with PETG

3D printing is one of the most common manufacturing field that work together with PETG.

By this part, I’ll expain you what segmentation of 3D printing PETG is often used, the products PETG offers and some notification with 3D printer.

Applications of PETG In 3D Printing

Functional Prototypes

XMAKE- PETG in functional prototype

One of the main 3D printing applications of PETG in the world of 3D printing is the creation of functional prototypes.

PETG is known for its strength and durability, making it ideal for printing projects like prototypes that can withstand testing and evaluation before moving on to mass production.

Mechanical Parts

XMAKE-mechnical PETG partsPETG is also commonly used for manufacturing mechanical parts due to its excellent impact resistance and flexibility.

Its strength and resistance to chemicals make it an ideal material for parts that need to withstand wear and tear.

Transparent And Colored Objects

XMAKE-PETG in colored parts

PETG has a high level of clarity, allowing for the production of see-through parts that are visually appealing.

It is also available in a wide range of colors, making it easier to print customized objects by creating detailed and aesthetically pleasing parts.

Food-Safe Containers

XMAKE-PETG in food container

PETG is a good choice for printing items contact with foods, such as water bottles, food containers, kitchen utensils, and packaging.

Its low shrinkage rate and minimal warping also contribute to its popularity in the 3D printing community.

Applications in 3D Printing Utilize Properties
Functional Prototypes
  • Durability and Strength
Mechanical Parts
  • Excellent impact resistance and flexibility
Transparent And Colored Objexts
  • High level of clarity
  • Available in a wide range of colors
Food-Safe Containers
  • Low shrinkage rate and minimal warping

What Need To Care About PETG In 3D Printer

XMAKE- PETG in 3D printer

When PETG is used in modern 3D printer, it is important to use the correct settings to ensure successful prints.

Recommended printer settings

Recommended printer settings for PETG typically include a hotend temperature between 230-250°C and a heated bed temperature of around 70-80°C. It’s also recommended to use a slower print speed compared to PLA to improve print quality.

Bed adhesion tips

To ensure proper printing bed adhesion when using PETG, glue stick or painter’s tape on the build plate can be helpful. Some users also have success with using a thin layer of hairspray or a specialized adhesive designed for 3D printing.

Post-processing techniques

PETG prints can be sanded and polished to achieve a smooth finish. Additionally, using a heat gun to lightly heat the surface of the print can help to remove any stringing or imperfections. It’s important to be careful when using a heat gun, as too much heat can cause the print to warp or melt.

Conclusion

XMAKE-Conclusion of PETG

In conclusion, PETG is a versatile thermoplastic material of choice with good parts and limitations, which is commonly used in applications. It is an has excellent choice for 3D printing since it has optimal values for the 3D printer.

As the demand for sustainable and high-performance continues to rise, the future outlook for PETG looks promising. With its unique combination of properties, PETG is well positioned to meet the needs of various industries.

Where Can I Find Good PETG Products?

You can contact with XMAKE! As leading digital manufacturing platform, we have rich experiences in dealing parts made from PETG and other materials, like PLA. Our advanced technique can combine internet with manufacturing to keep manufacturing control on whole printing process and every 3D printing products.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1: What are the similarities and differences between PLA and PETG?

A: Both PETG and PLA are thermoplastics commonly applicated in 3D printing, but the former offers better layer adhesion and durability compared to PLA.

Q2: What are some common printing issues associated with PET?

A: PET prints easily but may have problems like stringing and oozing, as well as deformation during printing if not properly calibrated.

Q3: Does PETG require a printing temperature lower than those of PLA or ABS?

A: PETG typically requires a higher printing temperature than PLA but lower than that of ABS.

Q4: PETG is naturally derived or manufactured?

A: PETG is a manufactured material and is not naturally derived.

Q5: What are some benefits of printing the first few layers of a print with PETG?

A: Printing the first few layers with PETG can help with bed adhesion and overall print durability.

References

  1. What is PETG (Polyethylene Terephthalate Glycol). (n.d.). Laird Plastics. https://lairdplastics.com/resources/what-is-petg-polyethylene-terephthalate-glycol-/
  2. Jindal, K. (2023, October 17). What is PETG Material? | The Definitive Guide. PlasticRanger. https://plasticranger.com/what-is-petg-material/

  3. WHAT IS PETG? (EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW) – FacFox Docs. (2022, August 12). FacFox Docs. https://facfox.com/docs/kb/what-is-petg-everything-you-need-to-know

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