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PLA (polyactic Acid) is biobased and recyclable filament (81)

Application - use
PLA is easy to print, does not give off toxic fumes during 3D printing and is also biodegradable. In addition, you can use PLA on any 3D printer because you do not need a heated bed.

What is PLA?


PLA stands for PolyLactic Acid (polylactic acid) and is a biological plastic (biopolymer). By extrusion, the polymers in the form of wire are processed for FDM (fused deposit modeling) 3D printing for prototyping.

Extra substances (additives) are added to the PLA to reinforce certain properties:

  • Fire-resistant substances: such as flame retardants, so that fire is not spread
  • Stabilizers: keep the filament strong and UV additives to prevent discolouration / yellowing
  • Pigments: colorants to give the PLA the right color

PLA biodegradable

PLA is made from sugars from plants through fermentation. It is biodegradable in industrial composting machines at a constant temperature of 60 ° C, pressure and micro-organisms and is then recycled into lactic acid. The ecological footprint, or Footprint, of PLA is half of comparable plastics and will go to zero.

PLA printing

PLA prints very easily at relatively low temperatures under fairly basic conditions. You do not need a heated bed, the fan cooling is maximal during printing and the detailing of a 3D print from PLA is very good.

Applications PLA

PLA is increasingly being used for packaging, disposable cutlery, textile fabrics, electronic housings and 3D filament

Technical data PLA

Material properties:

  • density of the material (mass per unit volume) *: 1.24 g / m³
  • Melt flow index (test to determine the flow of a plastic): 6 g / 10 min.
  • Diameter tolerance (deviation from the diameter): +/- 0.05 mm

* PLA is sold per kilo and therefore the density is important; a lower density means more material.

Mechanical properties:

  • Tensile strength: 60 MPa at yield / 53 MPa at break
  • Elongation at break (fraction elongation *): 6%
  • Tensile Modulus (elastic modulus **): 3600 MPa
  • Flexural strength (bending strength / flexibility): 83 MPa
  • Flexural Modulus (flexural strength): 3800 MPa
  • Izod Impact Strength: 16 J / m

* ratio between the length of the plastic before and after breakage

** Physical formula, see Young’s modulus


Thermal properties:

  • Glass transition temperature (glass transition temperature *): 55 - 60 ° C *
  • Heat distortion temperature (when does the plastic become soft?): 55 ° C

* This is NOT the melting temperature; this is the temperature (° C) at which an amorphous polymer changes from a hard, brittle state to a soft, rubbery state (source: Intertek)

Print features:

  • Print temperature: 190 - 215 °C
  • Heated bed temperature: 0 - 60 °C
  • Bed adhesion: Gravity Spray or Magigoo
  • Fan speed: 100%
  • Print speed: 25 - 70 mm / sec. *

Plasticz PLA is wound per 1 KG on a wide spool to prevent bending of the filament, Filament is a plastic and platcs have "memory" and will always want to take on their old shape. Our PLA is available in a diameter of 1.75 and 2.85.

Fillamentum PLA, ABS, ASA, CPE and woodfill are per 750 grams on a round spool. Fillamentum can be ordered in most cases in 1.75 mm and 2.85 mm.

Polymaker is a bit different; Polymax filament is per 750 grams on a spool, but Polylite per 1 KG.

Treed filaments are usually wound around a coil per 750 grams, but are also available in heavier coils.

* If you increase the print speed, you must also increase the print temperature. You have to tackle this experimentally.

We have enclosed a datasheet of Fillamentum PLA Extrafill to explain all the properties of PLA. Also have a look at www.plasticz.nl for more information about 3D filaments.


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