Our PLA 3D printing can be a more eco-friendly printing choice, in comparison to its alternatives, it’s also lower in cost but can be just as durable. PLA 3D prints are ideal for prototyping and non-functional parts and comes with a short lead time service.

Advantages of PLA

Blue 3D printed PLA part


PLA is one of the most eco-friendly plastic. It’s made from plant starch, such as corn. Due to its low melting point, PLA can not be recycled in the ordinary fashion, instead, you can grind up or melt your unwanted PLA  and extrude it as filament for new 3D prints.

Red PLA 3D printed stairs

Tough and durable

PLA is known for its brittle and strong qualities. It’s perfect for large-format prints, and rapid prototyping, it is favored among hobbyists and professionals for its versatility alone. PLA has a high tensile strength but can break or snap under powerful forces or pressure.

assortment of PLA prints, some in red,orange,blue,black,grey,green

Range of colours

Here at Surface Scan, we offer a range of colours in PLA. Such as black, white, red and blue. Not only do we offer a large range of colours for our PLA prints but we highly recommend you hand finish and paint your PLA 3D printed products, for the best outcome.

An exhaust manifold printed in PLA

Excellent print quality

PLA offers a great, professional surface finish at a low cost. It has a smooth matte finish, making the part look high quality and shelf ready. We at surface scan do advice you to apply a hand finish to your product especially if your product required multiple support material.

What PLA is perfect for...

Things to consider...

Start your PLA 3D print now...
A pla 3d printed part showing layer lines
Layer adhesion

Layer adhesion is critical to the FDM process. It can determine how good your part will look and how effective it will print. Layer adhesion is where the layers of your print stick together, if your layers don’t stick your part won’t print correctly and will look inadequate.

reels of pla filament showing all the colours
Colours we offer

At Surface Scan we offer a range of colours to choose from. We offer black, grey, white, red, orange, green and blue. These are all PLA, we only offer PLA+ in black, white and grey. That being said due to PLA’s natural matte finish it is extremely easy to apply any colour paint.

Appearance of PLA
3D printed black PLA parts

PLA parts will have visible layer lines, these shouldn’t distract too much from the overall part, it also has a matte finish. PLA is not as strong as some of it alternatives including the likes of PETG, but it is able to withstand most things. To tell the difference between PLA and PETG, PLA is more brittle and matte whereas PETG has a more glossy finish and is a lot more durable.

PLA vs other materials

At Surface Scan, we offer a number of other filaments, check out their advantages below.

Eco-friendly 80%
Print quality 90%
Cost effective 70%
Strength 85%
Flexibility 40%
Eco-friendly 80%
Print quality 80%
Cost effective 70%
Strength 90%
Flexibility 95%
Carbon Fibre
Eco-friendly 90%
Print quality 85%
Cost effective 75%
Strength 97%
Flexibility 45%
Eco-friendly 60%
Print quality 80%
Cost effective 40%
Strength 95%
Flexibility 35%
Eco-friendly 85%
Print quality 80%
Cost effective 70%
Strength 90%
Flexibility 45%
Eco-friendly 80%
Print quality 95%
Cost effective 85%
Strength 100%
Flexibility 55%

Looking for something stronger?

Our engineering FDM filaments are your best choice for high-performance applications. 

assortment of high-performance plastic components

PLA 3D plastic is considered food safe, biodegradable and biocompatible. Due to PLA's low melting point we recommend you think twice before using 3D printing spoons in hot drinks, and 3D cutters in or around the oven, That being said for basic use PLA is considered food safe.

PLA is not UV resistant. If left in direct sunlight for a prolonged amount of time it could cause serious no reversible damage to the thermoplastic. We here at Surface scan highly recommend you avoid using PLA for prints with outdoors and car applications. 

PLA falls into the FDM category,  or in other words filament extrusion technology. The PLA filament is fed into either a Bowden or direct extruder. It is then heated up  to melt the 3D printing material, the printer head then moves around in predetermined precise movements  laying each layer as it does. this process is repeated over and over again, each layer melting into the last until eventually we are left with your 3D printed part. 

PLA is in fact a waterproof plastic, making it perfect for those looking to print products that end up near or in water, the thickness of each layer playing a massive part in the permeability of PLA. 

Depending on the delivery speed you select, this is when you can expect to receive your PLA 3D prints:


  • Express (1-3 business days)
  • Standard (3-6 business days)
  • Economy (10 business days)

PLA is know for its strong yet brittle material properties. PLA has an average tensile strength of around 40 MPA, though this can vary depending on the additive and manufacturing process. PLA is perfect for those looking to prototype products on large scales, as well as being excellent for the hobbyist looking to print miniatures.  

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