Mechanical testing of polymer components made with the RepRap 3-D printer

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This page is part of an international project hosted by MOST to use RepRap 3-D printing to make OSAT for sustainable development. Learn more.

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The purpose of this project is to determine mechanical properties of polymer components printed with the open source RepRap Mendel 3-D printer. Standard test methods are to be used to gather accurate and acceptable test data. The results of the mechanical testing will be used for engineering analysis of parts designed to be created with the RepRap.

The results are published here: B.M. Tymrak, M. Kreiger, J. M. Pearce, Mechanical properties of components fabricated with open-source 3-D printers under realistic environmental conditions, Materials & Design, 58, pp. 242-246 (2014). open access

Detailed coverage here:

Testing Standards

ASTM D638-10 Standard Test Method for Tensile Properties of Plastics

Test Specimen

ASTM Type I specimen - STL file revised with starting point outside of specimen STL file

Printer settings to test

All g-code will be generated using Slic3r software from

Slic3r Setting
Layer Height 0.4mm, 0.3mm, 0.2mm
Fill Density 1.0
Fill Angle 0, 45
Fill Pattern Rectilinear
Solid Fill Pattern Rectilinear

Test Equipment

  • MTS Test System in M&M 413
  • MTS Testworks Software on test machine computer
  • Epsilon Technology 3542-0200-050-ST Extensometer

Specimen to Test

Naming Protocol

Layer Height-Orientation-Fill-Print#-Source

ie. (3-90-100-1 MTU) for 0.3 LH, 90 deg Fill Orientation, 100% Fill, Print #1, at MTU

Base Testing

  • 3 layer heights - .2, .3, .4; orientations 45, 90; 12 testing conditions; 10X each; 120 total tests.....


  • 0.4mm 90 deg (10 printed) 45 deg (10 printed)
  • 0.3mm 90 deg (10 printed) 45 deg (10 printed)
  • 0.2mm 90 deg (10 printed) 45 deg (10 printed)


  • 0.4mm 90 deg (10 printed) 45 deg (0 printed)
  • 0.3mm 90 deg (0 printed) 45 deg (0 printed)
  • 0.2mm 90 deg (0 printed) 45 deg (0 printed)

See Also