Have Silhouette Alta 3D Printer questions? Then you are in the right spot! I am collecting and answering common Alta questions right here. If you have any questions, drop them in the comments below.
If you are new to the Silhouette Alta, check out my Silhouette Alta Guide right HERE.
Silhouette Alta FAQs
I will answer more questions as I get them, but having talked with a few people about the machine, I have an idea of what kinds of questions you might have. Here are a few frequently asked questions and my best answers. 🙂
How big is the print area? / What size objects can you print?
The print bed is about 5 inches in diameter and you can print objects up to 5 inches tall (Official maximum printing area is 124 mm in diameter and 130 mm tall).
What designs can I use? / What file types can it use?
- .S3D Files. Silhouette 3D is the software that comes with the machine and .s3d files are the proprietary file types used by the software. The machine comes with 25 free 3D designs that you should find in your library after you have registered your machine. Go to silhouetteamerica.com/setup to register your machine, download the software, and get your free designs. (I had a little bit of trouble with this at first, but the nice people on the Silhouette chat helped me resolve it right away.) You can also purchase more 3D files from the Silhouette Design Store. The library is a bit small right now, but more designs should be coming.
- .STUDIO Files. Silhouette 3D can also import Silhouette Studio files! This means you can import your 2D designs (aka your vinyl decal and paper cutting designs) and the Silhouette 3D software will automatically convert them into 3D objects. There are 6 options for converting a flat Studio file into a 3D file (extrusion, cookie cutter, jewelry box, stencil box, stencil, and wax pendant). I will cover how to use Studio designs and the differences between these options in a future post. This feature is something I am really excited about and can’t wait to show you more of.
- .STL and .OBJ Files. Yes, you can use other 3D print file designs with the Silhouette Alta! I will share more information about where to find these file types in the future.
- With a few extra steps, you can also easily convert your SVG, DXF, and PNG files into 3D files! Read more about using these 2D cut file types with the Alta right HERE.
What filament / material can I use with the Alta?
The Silhouette Alta will work with any 1.75 mm PLA filament. Silhouette has their own brand of filament that currently comes in 7 colors. I have used a few other brands so far with success and will add more reviews and recommendations as I experiment further.
What is PLA? Is it safe?
PLA is a plastic made from corn and is generally considered food safe. It is BPA free and biodegradable. It is not dishwasher safe, however, so be sure to hand wash those cookie cutters!