A 3D printed vase straight from a 3D printer is not necessarily waterproof.

As a vase designer and creator, I would love to tell you more about this topic.

  • Why does it matter?
  • Watertight vs waterproof? What is the difference?
  • Are there any 3D printed vases that can withstand water?
  • What is the point of having a 3D printed vase that cannot hold water?
  • Where can I find these vases?

Why does it matter?

Have you found a beautiful bouquet of fresh flowers? Then of course you want to show them off! So a matching vase comes in handy. You then need a vase that can hold water. But can a 3D printed vase do that?

It is important to note that not every 3D printed vase can hold water.

Whereas a vase made of glass consists of one solid piece of material, a 3D printed vase is built in layers. This can allow water to escape between the layers. Sometimes right away, others over time. A vase that cannot hold water, doesn’t that sound strange? And is that always the case?

What is the point of a vase that cannot hold water? And do 3D printed vases that can hold water even exist?

You will learn more about it in this blog.

Watertight vs waterproof? What is the difference?

The main difference between watertight and waterproof is that 'waterproof' means something that is not affected by water whereas 'watertight' means tightly made so that water cannot enter or escape. Watertight refers to a seal - for example on boats. Waterproof means water doesn't affect it.

In 3D printing, an object is built up in layers. There are many factors that can affect whether or not a vase is waterproof.

The process in which the layers are stacked and 3D printer settings affect the density of the walls of the vase (the seal). While the material determines whether or not it can withstand water and does not degrade (waterproofness).

In most cases the used material is plastic, but in some cases it can also be clay, ceramic or other composites.

By choosing the right combination of hardware, settings and material, it is possible to make a vase waterproof.

Are there any 3D printed vases that can withstand water?

The short answer is: yes. In particular, 3D printed vases made of clay and ceramics are usually resistant to water. These vases are fired after printing, creating a waterproof seal on the inside. But these items are a lot more expensive and limited in shapes, colors and textures.

For (recycled) plastic vases, it depends on the combination of hardware, settings and material. Also, it is sometimes necessary to post-process a vase with epoxy or acetone.

Looking for a 3D printed vase that can hold water? Then look for a ceramic or clay printed vase that has been fired. These are available online.

Why would you want a 3D printed vase that can't hold water?

A 3D printed vase has many advantages over a traditional handmade or blow-molded vase. It all starts with an idea or concept for a design. 3D printed vases can be intricate, unique, and personalized for anyone. They also offer a wide variety of materials with different properties that can be used to create vases. For example, materials with different finishes, like: translucent, high gloss or matte.

3D printed vases can be used as decorative pieces, or they can be used as a container to display dried and artificial flowers. These types of flowers do not need water and last a long time. This saves you a lot of water and fresh flowers, without compromising on style. And making it a lot more sustainable.

Learn more about 3D printed decoration in my blog.

Where can I find these vases?

Looking for a unique vase for your dried flowers? Then of course I can help you!

My vases are specifically designed for dried flowers and artificial flowers, but are not waterproof. Each vase is made especially for you and is created using plant-based and recycled plastics. Not only are they a lot more sustainable, they also stay beautiful for a long time.

January 12, 2023 — Erwin Boxen

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