Dear DE Reader:
November 7th is a date which will live in history in the PR and marketing departments at 3D Systems. They had to coordinate a slew of announcements—multiple new additive manufacturing systems, new build materials, software upgrades and an assortment of service- and/or business-related announcements. They did well, but we have room just for the 3D printing systems.
Four of them. That’s right—four new 3D printing systems ranging from desktop size to full-scale, industrial production systems.
First up is the FabPro 1000. It marks 3D Systems’ entry into the desktop industrial 3D printing market. A $5,000-ish unit for designers, engineers, artisans and the like, this unit handles a variety of materials, including engineering plastics and castable resins. It’ll be available in the first half of next year.
The new ProX SLS 6100 extends the company’s line of SLS (selective laser sintering) production systems. It makes end-use parts and functional prototypes. It has an automated material handling system, a new air-cooled laser that eliminates the need for a chiller and software to optimize part builds. Three new nylon materials were introduced along with it, including an aluminum-filled nylon and a fire-retardant nylon.
At a Glance: New 3D Systems’ Additive Manufacturing Machines
- New scalable, fully integrated 3D printing production platform for production-grade materials.
- New metal additive manufacturing printing system for factory production.
- New industrial desktop 3D printing system.
- New SLS (selective laser sintering) production system.
- Three new nylon materials for production SLS.
- New rigid and engineering-grade materials for its MultiJet Printer platform.
Mass-production factory additive manufacturing sees a lot of action. First is the DMP 8500 Factory Solution. This is a metal 3D printing system intended for high-productivity with a low total cost of operations. It’s made up of function-specific, integrated modules. For example, its removable print module moves between the printer and powder modules for a continuous production workflow. This gives you the potential for 24/7 fabrication. 3D systems says that the DMP 8500 builds uniform, repeatable part quality, including seamless, large metal parts, as well as parts with the largest diameter available in the industry.
Finally, there’s the Figure 4, a modular, scalable platform. According to 3D systems, it produces small, plastic parts quickly and delivers up to a 20% lower part cost than current manufacturing processes. It handles a range of industrial, dental and custom materials that, 3D Systems says, enable true replacement of injection molding and urethane casting. Interestingly, the Figure 4 line is configurable as a single stand-alone unit as well as a highly customized, in-line production system of multiple units.
Thanks, Pal. – Lockwood
Anthony J. Lockwood
Editor at Large, DE