3D Printing in Manufacturing

3D Printing in Manufacturing

3D printing has come a long way since it was first introduced to the world. It started off as a ridiculous idea, but it started to gain traction. It grew in popularity until just about everyone had a 3D printer in their house and were printing little trinkets and toys. And for a while that seemed like that’s all 3D printers were good for, cheap small plastic toys. But now 3D printers and their prints are bigger, faster, and stronger. And the manufacturing industry is starting to notice just how big of an impact these 3D printers can make.

Prototype Production

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An important branch in most companies is the research and development team. Typically, once a new concept idea is created a prototype needs to be created. Companies used to pour money into creating all the components to construct a single small prototype. With all the time, materials, and labor the costs would add up. Now with 3D printing all that is needed for a prototype is a CAD file, a printer, and some filament. 3D printers have cut prototype production costs dramatically across the industry. Material recycling and waste was also a costly result of prototyping before 3D printers. Traditional subtractive manufacturing would leave excess material that needed to be melted down or disposed of. Since additive manufacturing only uses the material needed, there is no wasted material or need to recycle. 

An important branch in most companies is the research and development team. Typically, once a new concept idea is created a prototype needs to be created. Companies used to pour money into creating all the components to construct a single small prototype. With all the time, materials, and labor the costs would add up. Now with 3D printing all that is needed for a prototype is a CAD file, a printer, and some filament. 3D printers have cut prototype production costs dramatically across the industry. Material recycling and waste was also a costly result of prototyping before 3D printers. Traditional subtractive manufacturing would leave excess material that needed to be melted down or disposed of. Since additive manufacturing only uses the material needed, there is no wasted material or need to recycle. 

An important branch in most companies is the research and development team. Typically, once a new concept idea is created a prototype needs to be created. Companies used to pour money into creating all the components to construct a single small prototype. With all the time, materials, and labor the costs would add up. Now with 3D printing all that is needed for a prototype is a CAD file, a printer, and some filament. 3D printers have cut prototype production costs dramatically across the industry. Material recycling and waste was also a costly result of prototyping before 3D printers. Traditional subtractive manufacturing would leave excess material that needed to be melted down or disposed of. Since additive manufacturing only uses the material needed, there is no wasted material or need to recycle. 

Replacement Parts

3D printers used to be limited to printing only plastic, but now that has all changed. Metals are now able to be extruded or laser sintered to create high quality and high strength parts. Manufacturer have realized that these new 3D printed metal components are just like the ones working on all of their machines. So, when a machine breaks down why wait for new parts to be delivered when you can print multiple new parts in just hours? New 3D SLS (Selective Laser Sintering) printers are able to create large batches of metal parts. These printers not only beat the production speed or cost of new parts but match the quality and have the adaptability to print new variations to adapt to a changing machine. 

3D printers used to be limited to printing only plastic, but now that has all changed. Metals are now able to be extruded or laser sintered to create high quality and high strength parts. Manufacturer have realized that these new 3D printed metal components are just like the ones working on all of their machines. So, when a machine breaks down why wait for new parts to be delivered when you can print multiple new parts in just hours? New 3D SLS (Selective Laser Sintering) printers are able to create large batches of metal parts. These printers not only beat the production speed or cost of new parts but match the quality and have the adaptability to print new variations to adapt to a changing machine. 

3D printers used to be limited to printing only plastic, but now that has all changed. Metals are now able to be extruded or laser sintered to create high quality and high strength parts. Manufacturer have realized that these new 3D printed metal components are just like the ones working on all of their machines. So, when a machine breaks down why wait for new parts to be delivered when you can print multiple new parts in just hours? New 3D SLS (Selective Laser Sintering) printers are able to create large batches of metal parts. These printers not only beat the production speed or cost of new parts but match the quality and have the adaptability to print new variations to adapt to a changing machine. 

3D printers used to be limited to printing only plastic, but now that has all changed. Metals are now able to be extruded or laser sintered to create high quality and high strength parts. Manufacturer have realized that these new 3D printed metal components are just like the ones working on all of their machines. So, when a machine breaks down why wait for new parts to be delivered when you can print multiple new parts in just hours? New 3D SLS (Selective Laser Sintering) printers are able to create large batches of metal parts. These printers not only beat the production speed or cost of new parts but match the quality and have the adaptability to print new variations to adapt to a changing machine. 

Create Like Never Before

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When you create a part using subtractive manufacturing, there is a long list of limitations to what can and cannot be made. There are forms and bodies that are just impossible to make with traditional CNC mills, lathes, dies, or presses. However, 3D printing has brought a new angle to part creation. With the ability to deposit material in any shape or form, 3D printers can create just about any part that can be thought up. With no limitations, engineers are using 3D printers to create parts that go above and beyond anything that was able to be made before. With these new designs and possibilities who knows where it will lead for manufacturing. 

When you create a part using subtractive manufacturing, there is a long list of limitations to what can and cannot be made. There are forms and bodies that are just impossible to make with traditional CNC mills, lathes, dies, or presses. However, 3D printing has brought a new angle to part creation. With the ability to deposit material in any shape or form, 3D printers can create just about any part that can be thought up. With no limitations, engineers are using 3D printers to create parts that go above and beyond anything that was able to be made before. With these new designs and possibilities who knows where it will lead for manufacturing. 

When you create a part using subtractive manufacturing, there is a long list of limitations to what can and cannot be made. There are forms and bodies that are just impossible to make with traditional CNC mills, lathes, dies, or presses. However, 3D printing has brought a new angle to part creation. With the ability to deposit material in any shape or form, 3D printers can create just about any part that can be thought up. With no limitations, engineers are using 3D printers to create parts that go above and beyond anything that was able to be made before. With these new designs and possibilities who knows where it will lead for manufacturing. 

In Conclusion

3D printing is still a very new concept; however, it has brought so many changes to manufacturing and production already. With multiple industries realizing the potential 3D printing offers it won’t be long before everything is printed! With a long way to go still, it is exciting to think just how far 3D printing has come in such a short time and yet how much more can be done with it!

Written By:

 
Hayden Kemme

Hayden Kemme

CAD Designer at Perception Engineering

 
Hayden Kemme