Ultimaker has launched the beta for Ultimaker Cura 5.0, the latest version of its free, open source, slicing software. Ultimaker Cura handles applications in design, architecture, engineering and metal 3D printing.
Ultimaker Cura 5.0 was announced at the 21st April Ultimaker Showcase and it includes an enhanced slicing engine for finer and faster 3D prints. The newly developed variable line width capability of this slicing engine improves its ability to print thin walls and fine details. Parts printed with this engine will also be stronger. Other improvements include faster print profiles for owners of Ultimaker printers, support for Apple M1 chips, and more.
Thinner walls and finer details
The slicing engine in Ultimaker Cura 5.0 allows for the use of variable line width when slicing a 3D model. Previously, the line width used when slicing a file was decided by the diameter of the nozzle and the line width settings used. Once chosen and sliced, the line width would be consistent throughout the part.
This means that if part of a print was two-and-a-half lines thick, two lines would be used, and a small gap would be left between them. Small details of less than one line thick would not be printed at all. This has been a common shortfall for FFF 3D printing in general and Ultimaker Cura 5.0 solves it. With the new and improved slicing engine the width of lines is increased and decreased to create the most efficient tool patch and to most accurately print fine details.
The result is fewer gaps on the inside of parts and better quality when printing thin walls and fine details.
The variable line width capabilities of the slicing engine means parts are more solid, and therefore stronger. The biggest improvement in strength will be seen when printing thin walls where fixed line width would previously have resulted in walls with internal gaps and in some cases, walls that would not print correctly at all.
The improved printing of thin walls brings parts printed with Ultimaker Cura 5.0 closer than ever to the strength and quality of those produced using injection molding.
Faster print profiles
Print profiles available to users of Ultimaker printers have been updated to make use of the improved capabilities of Ultimaker Cura 5.0. The result is print time reductions of up to 20%.
Other improvements include:
• Apple M1 chip support
• A streamlined Ultimaker Marketplace integration
• An improved UI
Users can download Ultimaker Cura 5.0 beta here