Cracks and delamination, resulting from residual stresses, are a barrier in the world of additive manufacturing and selective laser melting (SLM) that prohibits the use of many metals in this field. By preheating the baseplate, thermal gradients are lowered and stresses can be reduced. In this work, some initial tests were performed with M2 high speed steel (HSS). The influence of preheating on density and mechanical and physical properties is investigated. The paper shows many promising results for the production of SLM parts in materials that are very sensitive to crack formation and delamination. When using a preheating of 200 °C, crack-free M2 HSS parts were produced with a relative density of 99.8%.

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