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Last updated 6 months ago
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Basic info

HIPS is a tough material suitable for printing large objects or supports for large models printed from ABS, ASA, or PETG. It has good print surface adhesion and can be dissolved in limonene (or acetone, although that would melt the ABS/ASA model as well).
 
Recommended nozzle temperature: 220 °C
 
Recommended bed temperature: 110 °C
 
Heatbed: All of our (smooth PEI, powder-coated TXT and powder-coated satin) sheets will provide the best adhesion.

Description

HIPS (High Impact Polystyrene) is polystyrene with rubber additives. It has good mechanical properties and dimensional stability. Print and mechanical parameters resemble ABS, but HIPS is lighter and shrinks much less. It can be dissolved with limonene (d-Limonene to be specific) - therefore is usable for printing soluble supports for more complicated ABS, ASA or PETG prints. HIPS can be sanded, just as ABS and ASA, plus it can be attached to a print surface with ABS dissolved in acetone - this is not needed when using our print sheets though, as HIPS sticks well enough to PEI surface.

To compare supported material properties, see our material table.

Pros

Cons

✔ Good mechanical properties

✖ Printing HIPS supports might be challenging

✔ Limonene or acetone soluble

✖ ABS or ASA might also partially dissolve in limonene

✔ Soluble support material

 

Best use

The best use of HIPS is as a soluble support material.

Tips for successful printing

Printing supports might be challenging

Keep in mind that printing ASA, ABS, or PETG with HIPS supports might be challenging if you use MMU2S. Are you beginning to print with MMU2S? Try to print with PLA or PETG first to gain some experience, then try to print with soluble supports. MMU2S unit must be well calibrated for printing with HIPS and even then it might need user attention from time to time.

Brim function

In some cases, HIPS might not stick to the print surface as good as, for example, ASA. In that case, we suggest using the brim function, especially for parts with a small contact area.

Chemical smoothing

Dissolving with limonene

HIPS can be smoothed and dissolved with limonene and acetone. However, with limonene, you cannot utilize its fumes (as we do it with ABS or ASA), as it is an oily substance. For successful smoothing, sink the model for several seconds (10-20 s should be enough) into a limonene bath. Then let it dry for at least 24 hours (a slight temperature increase might speed up the drying process). Keep in mind that residual limonene might remain on the surface long after drying and that the model itself will have a citrus smell for a long time.

Limonene over-exposure

Although HIPS is being used for printing ABS/ASA/PETG supports and will dissolve completely after long exposure to limonene, it is not wise to expose it to the solvent for too long. Some of the ABS and ASA filaments (Prusament ASA Orange for example) are also affected by limonene - it will disrupt the layer adhesion and the model will fall apart into tiny flakes. Instead of dissolving the supports completely, try to just loosen them up by a brief submersion into limonene, then remove the supports manually.

Acetone smoothing

HIPS acetone smoothing is much easier than smoothing ABS or ASA. HIPS layers will melt almost immediately (the whole process takes just a few minutes), plus models tend to dry much faster than ASA and ABS - where you can safely touch them sooner.

Find out more about chemical smoothing in our blog article.

Sample prints

Dissolving HIPS supports with limoneneAcetone/limonene smoothed models

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