Unleash your creativity with 3D printing!

3D Printing Spot Logo

What Is The Strongest Filament For 3D Printing

What Is The Strongest Filament For 3D Printing | 3D Printing Spot

Updated by

William Stone


January 13, 2023

To build high-quality objects with 3D printing, you need to experiment with different materials to best understand what the strongest filament is.

Using the wrong filament can result in a weaker print, causing you to waste time and resources looking for the most reliable material. Instead, you can take the information in this guide to avoid problems and use the strongest filament for your printing.

The strongest filament for 3D printing is polycarbonate because it is strong, durable, and provides plenty of versatility for different printing needs. It also has a high melting temperature and the extrusion temperature is quite high as well. The tensile strength estimates are 9,800 PSI.

3D printing is a process that creates objects by using layers of material and the strength of the 3D printing filament is one of the most important factors to consider. The material is a key factor in determining how strong a filament will be. We will explain what the strongest filament is and other options to choose from in this guide.

We have tested many different filaments for 3D printing to provide the most accurate analysis below. Each of these filaments has been carefully tested and researched to ensure this is the best guide you will find on the topic.

This article may contain affiliate links where we earn a commission from qualifying purchases.

Table of Contents

What Is The Strongest Filament For 3D Printing?

3D printing is becoming a more popular way of producing prototypes and end-use parts. It is also becoming a more affordable way of producing these items.

Polycarbonate filament is the strongest filament for 3D printing. This material has been used by engineers in the aerospace industry for years, but now it can be used by anyone with a 3D printer to produce strong prototypes and end-use parts.

The best filament for 3D printing is polycarbonate. It is strong, durable, and can be used in various applications, such as architecture and engineering.

In addition to being strong, polycarbonate can be transparent or translucent, making it an excellent choice for 3D printing prototypes with complex shapes and internal structures.

This filament is extremely rugged and durable with excellent temperature resistance. However, this is also a malleable material when exposed to cold temperatures but it is flexible enough to avoid breaking.

It is best to use polycarbonate with a heated printer bed. The recommended extrusion temperature for PC is between 260 to 320 Celsius.

Other considerations include the heat bed temperature which is best at 135 degrees Celsius. This provides plenty of durability and strength for your 3D prints.

How Strong Is Polycarbonate For 3D Printing?

Polycarbonate ranks as the number one choice if you prefer strength for 3D printing. It provides a tensile strength of 9,800 PSI with a capacity between 400-700 pounds.

The strength can also be improved depending on the object you are printing. It is also extremely durable with temperatures, handling temperatures between -150°C to 140°C.

It also has amazing impact resistance, but be aware that it is not the ideal option to handle overhangs or tedious details when printing.

Other strength factors can be analyzed too. It has a flexural strength of 100.4MPa and an impact strength of 25.1 kJ/m². You have no worries about shrinkage either because it is extremely low.

Other Strong Filaments For 3D Printing

3D printing is a revolutionary way of manufacturing. It is about changing the world as we know it. The technology has been around for decades but has only been used on a large scale in recent years.

3D printing has a lot of potential applications in the future. It could be used to print anything from human organs to houses and even food. But what are the strongest filaments for 3D printing?

This process can be done with many different materials. Still, filaments are the most common type of 3D printer material because they are easy to work with and have a wide variety of applications.

Below you will find the six most robust filaments for 3D printing for your next project.

1. Nylon

Nylon is a close second when it comes to filament strength for 3D printing. It has a tensile strength of 7,000 PSI.

The other great thing about Nylon is how well it tends to hold up in difficult situations when exposed to chemicals. It has excellent versatility for a variety of applications.

The average nozzle temperature when printing Nylon is 240-290 °C and it has fast printing capabilities for high volume jobs too.

2. TPU

Thermoplastic Polyurethane is another top rated high strength filament for 3D printing. It is ideal for applications that have excessive exposure to wear and tear because of the abrasion resistance.

However, it cannot provide the same heat resistance as these other options. It prints at lower temperatures and it is extremely difficult making it less versatile.

This filament requires much slower printing speeds to accommodate your prints. You can also expect solid chemical resistance when using TPU.

3. Carbon Fiber

Carbon fiber is considered one of the strongest filaments to use for 3D printing. It has a crystalline structure to create extra strength and the material is excellent for high strength needs.

The flexural strength of your average carbon fiber filament is 540 MPa. This matches well with a tensile strength of 700 MPa.

Carbon fiber is considered pretty siff as well, but it has top notch UV and light resistance making it ideal for specific applications.

4. ABS

Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene has a tensile strength of 4,500 PSI and ranks among the top options for strong 3D printing filaments.

It has extremely high melting temperatures with excellent heat resistance too. This gives you more versatility for printing when using ABS.


PEEK is a unique filament choice, but it is well known for the strength properties it can provide for 3D printing. It is loved among the community and carries amazing chemical resistance capabilities too.

The average tensile strength of PEEK is 80–100 MPa to handle a wide range of printing needs. However, it is significantly weaker when compared to Polycarbonate.

It also has a maximum temperature of 370 degrees to 450 degrees. This is plenty of strength for all types of printers.

What Defines Strength In A Filament For 3D Printing?

The material is a key factor in determining how strong a filament will be because it is what determines how much stress can be put on it before it breaks.

The strength of the filament is determined by a few different factors. All filaments are defined among these criteria to distinguish how strong each of them are when creating prints.

We have listed the five factors that influence the strength of a filament for 3D printing.

Tensile Strength

Tensile strength defines the ability of a material to bend or hold firm. This means the more tensile strength material has, the less likely it is to get deformed.

This is necessary for 3D printing because the material must experience high temperatures to create objects. It also means your object can resist more after the printing process is complete.

Temperature Resistance

Temperature resistance is another factor that matters because the entire 3D printing process relies on increasing temperatures to manipulate the final shape of the filament.

If you have an object that is used for high-temperature applications, this becomes even more critical as well. The material you use should match what the hot end of your printer can provide.

Impact Strength

The impact strength or impact resistance is another important factor to keep in mind. This defines how much impact the material can withstand without breaking or getting damaged.

Because many 3D printing objects are put in stressful situations, the impact strength of your prints should be high to ensure maximum durability.

Tear Strength

Tear strength will indicate how much pressure a filament can withstand without tearing. This specially references cuts that occur under high pressure.

This is a critical factor that your filament must possess because many applications require high tear strength to be successful.

Flexural Strength

Flexural strength is similar to tensile strength, but it is more related to how flexible a piece of filament is without breaking.

This combines the actual tensile strength and the compressive properties of the filament to indicate how well it will hold up over time.

Home /

What Is The Strongest Filament For 3D Printing


William Stone

William Stone

William has spent 20 plus years in the custom manufacturing industry as a COO, CEO and Owner of various custom product businesses. His experience has exposed him to all types of manufacturing from die cast, die struck, injection molding, CNC machining, laser etching, engraving and of course 3D printing.

Learn more about William Stone

Most Recent

Similar Posts You Might Like