The Principles of CMF & How They Relate to 3D Printing

The basic foundations of design commonly revolve around abstract ideas such as shape, texture, and balance. While these words may represent concepts that are tricky to grasp, the implications they represent can certainly be observed by your senses. These elements of design fall into a discipline called CMF (colour, material, and finish). Continue reading to find out more about the basics of CMF and how this concept applies to 3D printing.

Defining CMF and its importance in the design

CMF is an area of design that revolves around these three qualities of a product which all contribute to how people are able to perceive and interact with it. In other words, CMF is the thought process in design that deals with how an object is seen and felt by consumers.

The significance of CMF plays a huge role in the overall aesthetics of an object as well as its function. In this regard, this aspect is an important consideration every time a new design is made.

CMF in 3D printing: What are its applications?

With the ever-growing popularity of 3D printing and the emergence of superior technologies, many businesses and individuals are now taking advantage of the design freedom afforded by the medium.

3D printing now allows for infinite possibilities in terms of shape. When it comes to CMF, this method of construction is equally impressive and allows for endless customization. Learn more about several integral aspects below:

Colour: In 3D printing, designers choose from a broad spectrum of 16.7 million colour options. This means that designs can be made in any imaginable colour, and the Pantone matching system can serve as an important reference in this regard. Also, note that 3D-printed objects are typically made in a single colour as specified by the designer. To include multiple colours, paint or other post-process effects have to be applied to the prototype after it’s been cast.

Material: The most common materials used in many 3D printing services are different types of plastic. Their popularity is mostly due to their low cost and the high degrees of flexibility they can bring to designs. Plastics can also be printed in varying levels of transparency, which is not typically found in other materials. In recent years, however, 3D printing methods have evolved and now make it possible for more unique materials to be shaped into form. This has broadened the practical uses of this construction method as stronger and more flexible materials can be used for more than just decorative purposes. These new materials range from paper to metal, but other less conventional materials are also in development.

Finish: The finishing process that transforms a newly 3D-printed object into the final product can involve different processes. Some of the high-end methods of finishing involve special chemicals and heavy equipment which produces professional and polished works of 3D art. There are, however, other less sophisticated methods that can be used to achieve similar results. In any case, there are near-infinite ways you can tackle the finishing phase of your design, allowing you to build your design to fulfil its intended purpose.

Wrapping up

If you are considering having a prototype of your 3D design printed, remember the concepts discussed above so that you can ensure the end result is what you had in mind when first drafting its design. If you want to know more about this topic or need any 3D printing services in the UK, get in touch with us to see how we can help.

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