Know All About SLS Rapid Prototyping

Many additive manufacturing technologies exist today, and one of them is selective laser sintering (SLS) 3D printing. It’s popular with manufacturers and engineers for its high productivity, low cost per part and reliable materials to build accurate aesthetic models and prototypes. SLS rapid prototyping can build prototypes from a range of plastics, but reputable service providers use either nylon (PA 12) or PA 12 glass-filled. Let’s explore the process to help you learn more about it and if it’s suitable for your next project.

How it works

SLS 3D printing is an industrial 3D printing technology that builds durable and accurate parts with a precision laser to fuse the powder materials one layer at a time. Powder surrounds the part during the building process, so there’s no need for support structures to realize complex features and overhangs. After printing, the finished prototype is removed from the build chamber, separated, and rid of excess powder, which is reusable for other projects. The finished products can be post-processed further by media tumbling and media blasting.


SLS rapid prototyping can produce functional and aesthetic prototypes with complex geometries. The parts are built from high-strength material quickly and flexibly. SLS 3D printing is a versatile process that can be formed for low-volume end-use part production. The process can produce repeatable parts accurately.

Printing tips

Cost is usually one of the concerns that most engineers and product designers have when considering SLS rapid prototyping. However, there are ways to reduce expenses. For instance, you can create escape holes on excess materials for hollowed thick sections. Remember that SLS 3D printing crafts parts from powdered plastics, so it will produce a rough surface finish with a not-so-high resolution. You should also avoid designing large flat surfaces, as these are prone to warping. But if it’s part of your design, consider adding ribs for support.

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