Stress-Limiting Test Structures for Rapid Low-Cost Strength and Stiffness Assessment

Document Type


Publication Date



additive manufacturing, elastic modulus, FDM, process monitoring, rapid prototyping, yield strength

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)



Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the use of a simple printed geometry to estimate mechanical properties (elastic modulus, yield strength) with inexpensive test equipment. Design/methodology/approach - Test geometry is presented that enables controlled strains with manual deformation and repeatable measurement of vibrational frequencies. This is tested with multiple fused deposition modeling (FDM) machines to assess measurement accuracy and repeatability. Printing orientation and some printing parameters are varied to assess the measurement sensitivity. Findings - The test methods show good correlation with manufacturer material specifications in the X-Y plane and reported elastic strain limits. It is also sensitive to printing orientation and printing parameters. Research limitations/implications - Further work is needed to assess the sensitivity of the method to particular defects and parameter errors expected in particular applications. Originality/value - This method supports process monitoring in production environments and inexpensive assessments of material properties for hobbyist and do-i- yourself users. While it is tested with FDM, it should be applicable to other additive manufacturing processes.

Was this content written or created while at USF?


Citation / Publisher Attribution

Rapid Prototyping Journal, v. 21, issue 2, p. 144-151