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A quick introduction of how to make textures in 3D printed clay objects through adjustments of the extruder nozzel.

Step 1: Measure the Nozzel

Make sure that dimensions are as close to the original as possible. If the nozzel it to large, it will slide into the extruder; to small and it will slip out. This might take a few test prints.

I used an FDM printer and it helps to put a raft bellow the 3D printed nozzel to prevent the PLA from spreading on the first layer.

Step 2: Testing the Nozzel

After the nozzel is sized correctly, tests must be made to calibrate the extruder with the new nozzel. Play around with the extrusion rate and the layer height depending on the shape/size of the nozzel.

The images here show the results from a cross shaped nozzel head.

Step 3: Nozzel Variations

Here are some examples of the varieties of forms and textures that can be created with simple changing out the extrusion head.

Step 4: Reducing the Nozzel Thickness

I was able to successfully reduce the thickness of the extruder from 5mm to 2mm, but sticking to the circular aperture.

But the limits of how thin is still to be reached!

<p>It is so cool that you can 3D print clay! </p><p>Will you be sharing more info on that process? I think that would be <i style="background-color: initial;">very</i> interesting to read just about the basics of that process! :)</p>
<p>@seamster, thank you for your interest!</p><p>I can try to break it down a little more. Software wise, I was using MODO to model the nozzel, though there's no big advantage in that. For the machinery I was using the PotterBot by Deltabots for this experimentation and printed the nozzel heads with normal PLA on a Printerbot Simple. Material wise I was using a white clay that was softened a little with water. If you want to make the extrusion diameter smaller I suggest a more liquid clay mixture. It was kind of trial and error with the clay to water mixture, but it really depends on what the nozzel you are trying to use is like. Hope that was a little more informative! </p>
<p>Very cool. I was curious about the consistency of the clay and if that was a finicky process to get that right . . . and sounds like it is! :)</p><p>I hope you'll consider writing more instructables on your projects. I'd be interested to see what else you're making. Cheers!</p>

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