Get Clean Prints: How to Remove Brim from Your 3D Prints

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3D printing has revolutionized the way we create and design objects. It has made it possible for anyone to turn their ideas into reality, but it also comes with its own set of challenges. One of the most common issues faced by 3D printing enthusiasts is the removal of the brim from their prints.

A brim is a thin layer of material that extends along the print bed from the edges of a 3D print. It is used to provide better adhesion and prevent warping, but it can be difficult to remove once the print is complete. In this article, we will explore various methods for effectively removing the brim from your 3D prints. We will cover everything from adjusting slicer settings to using soluble materials, and provide tips for achieving a clean and smooth finish. So, whether you’re a seasoned 3D printing pro or a beginner, read on to learn how to remove brim from 3D prints like a pro.

Why Remove Brim from 3D Prints?

Brim is a common feature in 3D printing that is added to the base of the print to improve adhesion to the build plate. While it is useful for ensuring that the print stays in place during the printing process, it can also be a bit of a nuisance. Here are a few reasons why you might want to remove the brim from your 3D print:


Brim can leave a visible mark on the bottom of your print. This can be especially noticeable if you are printing with a transparent filament or if you are printing a model that will be displayed with the bottom facing up. Removing the brim can help to improve the appearance of your print.


If you are printing a part that needs to fit into another component, the brim can get in the way. Removing the brim can help to ensure that your part fits properly.

Time and Effort

Removing the brim can be a time-consuming process, especially if you have a large print or if the brim is particularly thick. By removing the brim, you can save time and effort during the post-processing stage.

Waste Reduction

Many 3D printing materials can be expensive, so it’s important to minimize waste wherever possible. Removing the brim can help to reduce the amount of material that is used in the printing process, which can help to keep costs down.

Overall, while brim can be a useful feature in 3D printing, there are several reasons why you might want to remove it from your prints. Whether you are looking to improve the appearance of your print, ensure proper functionality, save time and effort, or reduce waste, removing the brim can be a worthwhile step in the post-processing stage.

Tools Required for Removing Brim from 3D Prints

Removing brim from 3D prints can be a challenging task if you don’t have the right tools. Luckily, there are several tools you can use to make the process easier and more efficient. In this section, we will discuss the most common tools required for removing brim from 3D prints.


Pliers are a versatile tool that can be used for various tasks, including removing brim from 3D prints. Needle-nose pliers are the most commonly used pliers for this task, as they are effective at removing thin layers of plastic. You want to get yourself some high-quality pliers to get the job done as best as you can. A great one that we can recommend is the Irwin Vise-Grip Long Nose Pliers from Amazon.


Nippers are another useful tool for removing brim from 3D prints. Flat nippers and plastic cutting scissors are two common options. Both instruments work well, and you can use either depending on your preference or availability. That said, it may be better to use both simultaneously.

Hot Knife

A hot knife is a handy tool that can remove brims from your 3D print model in no time. This tool resembles a wood burner, but the main difference is that it has a blade and can also regulate its temperature. If you choose to use this hot knife, there is a specific way to go about it:

  1. Set the hot knife to about 230 °C (446 °F).
  2. Hold the blade perpendicular to the brim and slowly cut through it.
  3. Move the blade along the brim until it is completely removed.


Sandpaper is a useful tool for smoothing rough edges and surfaces. It can also be used to remove brim from 3D prints. Use a fine-grit sandpaper and gently rub it against the brim until it is removed. Be careful not to sand too hard, as this can damage the print.

Wire Cutters

Wire cutters are another tool that can be used to remove brim from 3D prints. They are particularly useful for removing larger brims. Simply cut through the brim with the wire cutters until it is completely removed.

In conclusion, removing brim from 3D prints requires the right tools. Pliers, nippers, hot knives, sandpaper, and wire cutters are all useful tools that can make the process easier and more efficient. Choose the tool that works best for you and your 3D printing needs.

Step-by-Step Guide to Remove Brim from 3D Prints

Removing the brim from a 3D print can be a tedious task, but it is essential to give your print a clean and professional look. Here is a step-by-step guide to help you remove the brim from your 3D print easily.

Step 1: Prepare the 3D Print

Before you begin removing the brim, make sure your 3D print is adequately cooled down. This will prevent any accidental damage to the print. Once the print has cooled down, remove it from the printing bed and place it on a flat surface.

Step 2: Remove the Brim Using a Knife or Blade

There are several ways to remove the brim from a 3D print, but using a knife or blade is the most common and effective method. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Hold the 3D print firmly in one hand and the knife or blade in the other.
  2. Place the blade at the edge of the brim and gently push it inwards.
  3. Slowly move the blade along the edge of the brim, cutting it away from the print.
  4. Repeat the process on all sides of the brim until it is entirely removed.

Step 3: Sand the Edges of the 3D Print

After removing the brim, you may notice small imperfections or rough edges on the print’s surface. Sanding the edges of the print can help smoothen them out and give it a polished look. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Use a fine-grit sandpaper to sand the edges of the print gently.
  2. Move the sandpaper in a circular motion, applying light pressure.
  3. Continue sanding until the edges are smooth and free from imperfections.

In conclusion, removing the brim from a 3D print is a simple process that requires a bit of patience and precision. By following the steps outlined above, you can give your 3D prints a professional look and feel.

Tips for Removing Brim from 3D Prints

If you’re working with 3D prints, you’re probably familiar with the brim. It’s a thin layer of material that surrounds the base of your print, helping it stick to the print bed. While the brim is useful during printing, it can be a hassle to remove once the print is complete. Here are a few tips to help you remove the brim from your 3D prints.

Tip 1: Use a Heat Gun to Soften the Brim

One of the easiest ways to remove a brim is to soften it up with a heat gun. Hold the heat gun a few inches away from the brim and move it back and forth until the brim starts to soften. Once it’s soft, you can use a scraper or a knife to remove it. Be careful not to overheat the material, as this can cause it to warp or deform.

Tip 2: Use Sandpaper for Better Results

If you’re having trouble removing the brim with a scraper or a knife, try using sandpaper. Start with a coarse grit and work your way up to a finer grit until the brim is completely removed. Sanding can also help smooth out any rough edges left behind by the brim.

Tip 3: Use a Dremel Tool for Difficult-to-Reach Areas

Sometimes the brim can be difficult to remove from tight spaces or hard-to-reach areas. In these cases, a Dremel tool can be a useful tool. Use a sanding drum attachment to grind away the brim, being careful not to damage the rest of the print. You can also use a cutting wheel attachment to carefully slice away the brim.

With these tips, you should be able to remove the brim from your 3D prints with ease. Remember to take your time and be patient, and always wear protective gear such as gloves and eye protection when working with tools.


Removing the brim from a 3D print can be a daunting task, but with the right techniques, it can be done effectively. In this article, we have discussed various methods for removing brims from 3D prints, including adjusting the slicer settings, cutting the brim off with a deburring knife or nipper, using soluble materials, and sanding it off.

One of the easiest and most effective methods for removing brims is adjusting the slicer settings. By adjusting the brim setting in your slicer software, you can reduce the width and number of brim layers, making it easier to remove the brim after printing.

Another method is cutting the brim off using a deburring knife or nipper. This method requires some precision and caution, but it can be effective in removing the brim cleanly without damaging the print.

Using soluble materials is another option for removing brims. This method involves using a material that dissolves in water or a solvent, making it easy to remove the brim without damaging the print.

Finally, sanding off the brim can be effective, but it requires some patience and care. Using a fine-grit sandpaper, you can gently sand away the brim without damaging the print.

Overall, the best method for removing brims will depend on your specific print and personal preference. Experiment with different techniques to find the one that works best for you. Remember to always use caution and take your time to avoid damaging your print.