The additive part of the name comes from adding layer upon layer to create the part, as opposed to subtractive technologies such as CNC machining which mill and grind away material to reach a final part. How these additive layers are formed and the parts are created is what separates the different additive manufacturing technologies.
3D printing, also known as additive manufacturing (AM), is one of the most exciting manufacturing technologies talked about today. We are now seeing a second modern wave of interest and enthusiasm for 3D printing with advances appearing in news feeds everyday across markets including consumer, industrial, automotive, aerospace, medical, and many more.
As technology improves and processes are refined, metal 3D printing has grown increasingly popular and accessible. But even as price points for 3D printers come down and new applications for additive manufacturing are discovered, challenges remain that prevent many companies from utilizing this innovative technology to its full potential.
3D printing is being utilized in a variety of industries due to its high-quality customization capabilities and on-demand manufacturing, among other key benefits. Out in front among the sectors taking full advantage of additive manufacturing technology is the healthcare industry.
Manufacturers are making headway in mass customization thanks to lean manufacturing, just-in-time inventory, and digital technologies like additive manufacturing.
Customizable consumer products can create production choke points in traditional manufacturing models. Additive manufacturing is one way to “unchoke” production for mass customization.
The medical device market is booming and is expected to reach a value of $543.9 billion by 2020, and an increasing number of those devices are the result of 3D printing.
3D printing’s big advantage is its ability to produce implantable medical devices customized specifically for a patient – more quickly and cost-effectively than in traditional manufacturing methods.
The MPIF Standard 35 for powder metallurgy now includes two aluminum alloys in the 2xxx designation series.
Just a few months ago, Gander Mountain filed for bankruptcy—shutting down some of the largest firearms superstores in the country and proving that practically no industry is safe from what commentators are calling the “Retail Apocalypse.”
Whether you’re designing silencers for muzzle-loading guns or the most efficient AR-15 lower receiver, keep these three ideas in mind to ensure the most profitable approach to firearms manufacturing and design.
1. Design Specifically for the Additive Manufacturing Process
As a designer, you need to have a particular metal additive manufacturing (AM) process in mind when creating your CAD model.
When it comes to low-volume manufacturing of metal parts, 3D metal printing is proving to be a paradigm shifting technology. Without a doubt, metal additive manufacturing will be the single largest boon for low/medium-volume manufacturing the world has ever seen.
There is a lot of buzz around the technology, and rightfully so. However, it has limitations that need to be well-understood by engineers. It's important to have a deep understanding of the process before designing for it. The purpose of this article is to offer a few tips and tricks that can help engineers just starting out on this journey.