Polystyrene is a very common plastic and is used in applications such as protective packaging (such as CD cases), disposable cutlery and bottles. Polystyrene was first discovered in 1839 but wasn't commercially produced by extrusion until 1931. Polystyrene has a Resin Identification Code of 6 and is not commonly recycled, it is also extremely slow to bidegrade.
Polystyrene is clear, hard and brittle in its natural form. It can be considered an alternative to ABS. Polystyrene is usually printed between 200°C and 260°C with a heated print bed between 60°C and 100°C. Polystyrene can be easily dissolved using aromatic hydrocarbons, such as benzene, or chlorinated solvents. Polystyrene tends to be easy to post process; it is easily sanded, glued and painted. Polystyrene 3D printing filaments tend to be relatively cheap.
Polystyrene has been reported to be relatively easy to print with, adhering well and producing little odour. Ensure you print in a well ventilated area to avoid inhalation of ultrafine particles. Polystyrene can also be printed at a relatively high speed, usually between 40mm/second to 100mm/second. As with all plastics, printing at faster speeds will require a higher temperature to reduce viscosity and improve flow.
As Polystyrene is so brittle it is prone to stress and environmental cracking. Polystyrene is not a particularly common 3D printing filament however High Impact Polystyrene (HIPS) is very commonly used for 3D printing, either on its own or as a support structure for materials like ABS.
Here at Filaments.directory you can select the right Polystyrene filament using our constantly updated list of suppliers and our comprehensive search tool!