The viscoelastic properties of rubber polymer–based compounds are crucial for further applications but challenging in the manufacturing process using additive manufacturing techniques. The fact that the first layer is attached to the printing bed restricts free relaxation after extrusion and the part shows a strong contraction along the printing direction after release and especially after vulcanization. In this study, the molar mass distribution and the acrylonitrile (ACN) content of an NBR-based compound for the fabrication of O-rings for rod seal applications were varied to demonstrate the different degree of contraction resulting from three-dimensional printing. An ACN content of 34% and an average molar mass of 2.47·105 g·mol−1 with a dispersity index of 2.6 was found to be a suitable compromise between the degree of contraction and compression set as a criterion for the application as O-ring as the inner part of rod seals.

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