Question about filament storage
As I get more into the 3d printing hobby I find myself purchasing a wider and wider array or filament brands, types, and colors. I currently store most filaments in heavy duty vacuum bags with desiccant. I'm looking at purchasing an electric dehumidifying cabinet to store filament (along with some other items that would benefit from the environment, as my current solution becomes more difficult to maintain as I purchase more filaments. Looking at a FORSPARK Camera Dehumidifying Dry Cabinet currently. I was hoping to get some input from the forum on the following questions:
1. If I simply put some spools of filament into the cabinet that have not been properly stored in the past, will they simply dry out to a more usable state over time or should I make the effort to dry them out a bit first (in a low temp oven for example)?
2. Is a relative humidity of 25%, the lower limit of these cases, sufficient for filament storage?
3. Has anyone had any success with building a similar DIY cabinet?
Any information people would like to share would be welcome. Thanks!
1. If I simply put some spools of filament into the cabinet that have not been properly stored in the past, will they simply dry out to a more usable state over time?: No, the filament will need to be heated and actively dried, (preferably just below it's glass transition point) then stored, and humidity maintained. Just to be clear "simply putting stale filament in a low humidity environment will not restore it to a fresh state." kinetic energy must be imparted. 🤔
2. Is a relative humidity of 25%, the lower limit of these cases, sufficient for filament storage?: There is room for debate here, depending on the filament type and your intended usage, as well as the time frame of intended usage and filament type. It seems to be generally accepted that many filaments e.g. PETG, PLA, ABS & ASA do ok out in the wild 🤪 with RH's of around 30% for short periods of time (a week or so) however, other filaments such as TPU/TPE, PA's & PC's are not as forgiving and need to be stored with more care and in some cases simply can not exist in the wild. 🤒 🤢
Many store their filament at as low of RH as they can get 10%-17%, of course in most cases if your filament does get stale you can freshen it up with active heating in a filament dryer/ dehydrator or oven.
3. Has anyone had any success with building a similar DIY cabinet?: Yes
Many have, and the designs are everywhere. 🧐
Good Luck to you, it sounds like your gonna have some fun, 😎
This question really piqued my interest. Didn't know such things as dehumidifying cabinets even existed... Sounds like a super clean solution that would make my workshow look a lot cleaner. However, then I took a look at the Forspark cabinets. Wow, quite the price tag! And from the looks I'd need more than one for all my filaments.
My lower (not low) cost solution is large Ziploc Weathershield storage boxes that can hold 10+ spools, combined with renewable mini dehumidifiers. As long as you keep an eye on the color of the dehumidifier and recharge it as needed every month or so, I have had filaments in there for more than an year with no apparent degradation in performance.
While shopping at a local Dollar store.
Seeing the Moisture Eliminators, 8.1 oz. Containers and it reminded me that my filament is worth more.
Picking up a couple more containers of the Home Store Moisture Eliminator as seen in the image below.
This inexpensive wonderful product has keep my Filament safe and moisture free for nearly 4 years now.
Started with re-using the little desiccant packages first, then seen these 8oz containers that work much better.
Just wanted so tell every one how I have 4 year old filament that still prints like brand new Filament.
I keep my filament stored in a large storage container with a single Moisture Eliminator to keep my filament dry..
Thinking about it see no reason why you cannot use a couple Moisture Eliminators in a cabinet to keep filament dry.