As a test the properties of the Formlabs Clear resin 3D printing material, an engineer at Formlabs named Craig Broady decided to create a 3D printed magifying lens using Formlabs Form1+ SLA 3D Printer.
The Form1+ SLA 3D Printer is capable of printing 25, 50 and 100 micron (0.001, 0.002 and 0.004 inches) layer thicknesses and 3D printed a crystal clear magnifying glass using the Clear resin, which can be seen in the image above.
The part was printed at 50 micron layer heights, and oriented it so that it faced the front of the printer as in the image below. Brody explains a little more :
“I designed the lens and the monocle frame, chain, and clip in Solidworks, CAD software that we use a lot at Formlabs, and then printed it on the Form 1+ 3D printer.
Both parts were printed with a 50 micron layer thickness. In PreForm, the lens was oriented such that it faces the front of the printer. This allows the liquid resin to flow more freely around it during the peel cycle.
Maximizing resin flow can help prevent very small cured particles in the resin from adhering to lens, ensuring as smooth a surface as possible. As smooth as the lens was fresh out of the printer, in order to get the lens optically clear, a lot of polishing is required. This could mean hours of manually sanding and rubbing, or just a few minutes with the aid of an electric drill.”
For more information on the new 3D Printed Magifying Lens jump over to the Formlabs website for details and a full run through of the process.
Source: 3D Print