3D printing has taken the world by storm!
Anything from prosthetic limbs to living organs for transplantation can be done using this revolutionary technology. Experts say that the technology to convert digital files into real life materials is the next frontier of the industrial revolution.
It might seem like the stuff of science fiction, however, many businesses are dependent on this technology today! In fact, according to the University of Rochester Medical Center, a 3D printer was used in a non-surgical heart repair procedure to save a woman’s life! Just like this, many other manufacturing companies and even fashion designing firms are taking full advantage of 3D printing.
One of the greatest benefits of 3D printing is its rapid prototyping ability. It’s the fastest way to go from paper to 3D model in just a matter of hours. All you have to do is input the digital model into its software and your model would be ready overnight. This not only saves time but is also very cost effective. You don’t need someone to figure out how to put the prototype together; the printer will do that for you!
Prototyping is just a small step of what it’s actually capable of. Let’s say you are a manufacturing company that specializes in medical robotics for disabled people. What if one of your customers need to repair the robot that he depends on to survive? Unfortunately, it’s an old model and you no longer have the parts to repair his robot. Also, your client cannot afford a newer model, so will you turn them away knowing they won’t survive without your technology? Now if you had a 3D printer you would make parts on demand! This opportunity will be extremely lucrative for your company! How? Traditionally, you would have to manufacture a quota of parts according to an estimation of demand. However, with 3D printing you know exactly how many customers will purchase your product. There won’t be any extra cost incurred by manufacturing extra parts. Manufacturing on-demand means that volatile economic situations, such as the recession, won’t be able to mess up your supply and demand calculations. Bottom line: Maximum profit; minimum loss!
This technology has changed and shaped the way we think about manufacturing today. The possibilities of this technology are limitless. In fact, there are numerous rapid prototyping services that do the printing for you! They offer a wide range of services to custom fit your manufacturing needs. You’ll be able to make cutting edge prototypes even if you don’t know what materials to use. The prototyping service uses the best materials and latest technologies to take your prototypes to the next level. Another advantage of using these services is that they build your projects with unparalleled finishing skills and that too at an unbeatable price.
Some manufacturing firms even take this to the next level! They work with industry professionals and customers to build a prototype that is light-years away from its competition. Traditionally, to go from the idea stage to mass production stages takes months! However, with 3D printing, it’s only a matter of days! Some companies even come up with their own materials which is unlike anything that has ever existed!
Sales of 3D printers and materials have skyrocketed in recent years! One research shows that in 2013, the sale of 3D printers and its associated services have brought in a whopping $2.5 billion worldwide! It’s a multibillion dollar industry now!
Contrary to popular belief, 3D printing technology is not relatively new. It’s been around for as long as three decades! The only reason it has boomed so much in recent times is because the original inventor’s patent expired just 6 years ago. This fact made it easy mass produce the technology, making it significantly less costly to consumers.
Thinking of buying one of these babies for yourself? Well, it is estimated that a small scale plastic material printer costs around $2000 to $3000. However, the price is significantly higher for those that print metal parts or commercial grade ones. A commercial grade plastic material printer can set you back anywhere from $50,000 to $250,000. On the other hand, a commercial grade metal parts printer can range from $600,000 to $1 million or higher!
If possessing a 3D printer can significantly lower your manufacturing costs then it’s worth the investment. If not, you can always seek the help of professional printing services.
Needless to say, 3D printing has its ‘finger in a lot of pies’. From medical surgery and prosthetic limbs to car parts and even in education, it has made its contribution. In the medical field, it’s used to test drugs on living tissues, so human testing may become safer. Subsequently, it has the potential to make drugs more affordable.
It seems that whatever field 3D printing touches – turns to gold!