Kuraray is one of the world's leading manufacturers of PVOH water soluble plastics. The chemical company's materials that are used on products like dishwasher tablets are now available for desktop 3D printers.
Its Mowiflex material was in action at 3D Printing Tokyo 2017, not only 3D printing as support material on an Ultimaker 3 but also dissolving in water. The company recommends that parts are printed with a nozzle temp of between 190-215 °C, a bed temp between 50-70 °C and dissolved in water of 30 °C.
With many printers now capable of printing dual materials, soluble supports have become a much-demanded tool. Some materials already on the market have been criticised for degradation, particularly in moist climates but Kuraray say their material is resistant to most climates, recommending that, if working in a damp environment one puts the material back into a zip lock bag with a desiccant.
Although the current generation of Mowiflex (C 17) is fully working and has good adhesion to PLAs, TPUs, PVBs and PA the company is working on a new grade of 3D printing material that has a better melt flow, quicker dissolving time and more adhesion to materials like ABS.