Best Glow In the Dark Filaments
Choosing the best glow in the dark filaments (GITD) can be tricky because it’s hard to tell the difference between one brand and the next. There are only a few colors to choose from, and they all perform similarly. In fact, without a rigorous testing scheme to measure the following properties, it is very hard to establish a ranking of GITD filaments:
- Luminosity over time
- Color strength
- Effects of additives on the quality of the base plastic
But there are some very highly rated glow in the dark filaments that are top notch.
Our Top Pick: Hatchbox. It is bright and lasts for hours. It is also super easy to print with and the color is nice.
In a rush? Click here to check out Hatchbox GITD on Amazon.
On this list you will find some of the highest quality filaments available. They are not the best filaments on their own when compared with all other filaments in general. But they are very good for GITD filaments. Some have unique colors while others come from brands with fantastic customer service. Also, some are easier to work with than others. Hopefully you can find one that suites your needs.
Best Glow In the Dark Filaments
You should know that many GITD filaments need to absorb UV light in order to glow properly. One of the most common complaints that people have about GITD filaments is that they don’t glow very brightly. This problem often arises because people don’t know how to charge GITD filaments properly.
If you charge them with LED lights or phone screen, for instance, the glow will probably be fairly weak. But if you expose them to sunlight or an incandescent bulb, they will glow brightly for a long time. That is because these light sources contain UV light.
Also, according to 3D Printing For Beginners, prints that have thicker walls glow brighter than prints with thin walls. So try lowering your infill and adding a few shells in your slicer to get better results. Check out the results of their testing:
Another thing to keep in mind when using these filaments is that they tend to be rougher on printer nozzles than regular filaments. That is because the additives that cause the filaments to glow contain particulates that will wear down a nozzle made of brass.
As a result, we advise that you use a steel nozzle instead of the regular brass nozzles when printing large amounts of GITD objects. You can definitely get away with printing a few GITD objects with regular brass nozzles, but overtime brass nozzles will corrode.
Here’s a quick video by 3D Printing Nerd on Youtube:
Hatchbox has produced one of the highest rated GITD filaments on Amazon. With over 100 positive reviews, it is also one of the most highly rated filaments in general. Some of that has to do with popularity of Hatchbox filaments in general. But considering that the next best rated glow in the dark filament has far fewer positive reviews than Hatchbox glow in the dark filaments, there is definitely something different about them that people are enjoying more.
Perhaps one of the reasons this filament is so popular is that, unlike many other GITD filaments, Hatchbox GITD has incredibly reliable tolerance. The hue of Hatchbox GITD isn’t necessarily that much different from 3D Solutech or Gizmo Dorks. But Hatchbox GITD has without a doubt one of the most reliable tolerances out there, at +/- 0.01 mm.
One of the best things about Hatchbox GITD filaments is that you can print it with settings that are similar to, if not the same as, settings for regular PLA. It is extremely easy to use and will rarely cause any problems with your machine. Also, it glows brightly and for a long time. Just make sure you are using a light source that produces UV light. Otherwise it won’t charge very much.
Check out this video of a Millennium Falcon being printed with Hatchbox Glow In The Dark:
3D Solutech GITD filament is one of the brightest glowing filaments out there. 3D Solutech definitely didn’t skimp on the amount of additive they put in their filament to give the glow effect. The color of 3D Solutech GITD isn’t that much different or better than other GITD filaments, but it outshines most of them.
Like Hatchbox, 3D Solutech GITD is super easy to print with, has an even flow through the hot end and sticks well to blue painter’s tape, just like it should. It has good tolerances also, at +/- 0.05 mm.
3D Solutech has some issues to overcome in terms of business operations. They’ve been known to deliver the wrong filament and not respond to customer service. We took a star off of our rating for that reason.
But these mistakes are few and far between. The customer service issue is definitely a problem, but if you are having trouble reaching them, try social media. They seem to respond fairly quickly to messages on their Facebook page. In any case, the quality of their GITD is definitely worth checking out.
Check out this test of 3D Solutech glow in the dark filament:
Gizmo Dorks glow in the dark filaments are good quality filament coming from a brand that is known for customer service. While Gizmo Dorks GITD filament is not the best quality filament among all brands, it is good for a GITD filament, and it glows brightly when properly charged.
The main problem with it is that it clogs a bit more than other filaments and it isn’t the easiest filament to print with. It is isn’t so easy to find the proper printer settings for it, but with a bit of effort you can get good results. And if you have too much trouble to make it worth your while to use, Gizmo Dorks filament is very good and will work hard to fix the problems until you are satisfied.
MeltInk3D glow in the dark filament is definitely one of the best filaments available on Amazon. It is very good quality and easy to use. Best of all, it glows brightly and charges quickly. The glow color is unique compared with other GITD filaments that make it particularly interesting to work with. The MeltInk GITD shades of blue and green are unlike any other glow in the dark filaments out there. They must have used a novel pigment, and the difference is pretty cool.
The only potential downside to this filament is that it is a bit rougher to work with than other filaments. You should always use a steel nozzle with GITD filaments and that is particularly true for this filament. This filament will quickly where our a brass nozzle after a few uses. If you plan to print a lot with these filaments, ensure that you are using the right type of nozzle.
Glow in the dark filaments are very fun to print with but it is sometimes difficult to find a good quality GITD. We are confident that the filaments above will be easy to work with and produce good quality glow in the dark objects.
As long as you remember to use a steel nozzle if you intend to print a lot of GITD filament and to charge the objects in UV light sources, such as incandescent light bulbs and sunlight, you should have no problems. They are easy to work with and not too expensive. Check their prices on Amazon.
If you have comments about anything we’ve said or want to bring another GITD filament to our attention, feel free to leave a comment below. Otherwise we hope you’ve founds a filament for your purposes.