Ultimate Beginners Guide To 3D Printing

3D printing or additive manufacturing technologies have taken the world by storm. This kind of disruption was last seen during the advent of the Internet. Here is a beginner’s guide to how and why you should choose 3D printing services for your business today.


What is 3D Printing?

First things first. The process of online 3D printing can be described as one in which a digital 3D model is used to create a physical object. This is done through the successive layering of a chosen material, using specific techniques.

3D printing is also called additive manufacturing, which, as the name suggests, is the opposite of subtractive manufacturing. 3D print services facilitate the production of complex shapes with fewer amounts of materials compared to traditional manufacturing techniques.

3D printing is also cheaper and quicker than conventional processes of production. Moreover, additive manufacturing technologies allow room for greater customizations.

How it works

Using different 3D scanning software, a digital 3D CAD model is first created. The digital model is then converted into a file that can be used for 3D printing. Finally, the material selected is laid down in succession, one layer after another to obtain the physical object.

There are many types of 3D printing technologies, such as FDM 3D printing, SLA or SLS, DMLS, material jetting, and variations of these. Along with the variety of techniques, the inventory of 3D print filaments is also expanding.









3D Printing Materials

The materials for 3D printing include an array of plastics, metals, ceramics, nylon, all meant for rapid prototyping and industrial production. Additionally, the development of bioprinting promises to add to the repertoire of 3D print services.

Specific materials include:

  • Plastic 3D Printing: Nylon, Polyamide, ABS, PLA, Carbon, ULTEM 9085, ULTEM 1010, HP Premium Nylon PA12.
  • Metal 3D Printing: Aluminium (manufacturing and automobile industries), Cobalt Chrome, Stainless Steel 316L, Stainless Steel 420, Gold, Platinum, and Silver (jewellery creation), Copper, Bronze, Titanium, MS1 Steel (aerospace industry), Nickel alloy, IM 625.
  • Biocompatible Materials: PC-ISO, MED610.

Benefits of using 3D printing

The demand for 3D printing in Australia has gone up manifold in recent years. To understand this phenomenon, look at these advantages of 3D printing over traditional manufacturing.

Customization – Mass customizations are easier with 3D printed products. Objects can be personalized as per specific consumer and client. This, in turn, can lead to great cost savings for the manufacturer.

Complexity – It is easy for 3D print technologies to create objects that have complex geometries and cannot be created through conventional techniques. This gives immense design flexibility to engineers who can now take care of defects and make design modifications without investing too much time or money!

Tool-free – One of the most advantageous factors for the popularity of 3D printing is its tool-free capabilities. Earlier, the production of tools would take up a lot of time even before production could begin. Industrial 3D printing can eliminate the need for this production, thereby leading to overall cost reduction.

Sustainable and Eco-friendly – By saving the need for tooling, and by contributing to the creation of energy-efficient parts, 3D printing is emerging as an eco-friendly alternative to conventional industrial manufacturing.

Local Manufacturing – Businesses can cut down on expensive inventory, logistics, and shipping costs by going local with 3D printing. When products are manufactured on demand, companies do not need to worry about sourcing products from anywhere else in the world.


Industries and Applications

The following industries are the most ardent users of AM technologies in their businesses.

  • Automotive

    3D Printing in Automotive

    Lightweight aerodynamics parts are desirable in the automobile industry. This contributes to making cars more energy efficient. 3D printing in the automotive industry is used both for rapid prototyping services as well as for some end parts creation.

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  • Manufacturing

    Th3D Printing in Manufacturinge precision and accuracy of 3D print processes are helping the manufacturing industry reduce material wastage, save time, money, and efforts.

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  • Aerospace/Defence/Navy

    This industry was one of the earliest adopters of additive manufacturing. Rapid prototyping has become a critical component in the development of replacement and end parts in this industry.

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  • R&D

    3D Printing For R&DRapid prototyping has become a crucial component used in R&D departments of leading businesses. It helps save time and money for the manufacturers.

  • Medical and Healthcare

    3D Printing in HealthcareThis is one of the most promising sectors for applications of 3D printing. Some of the applications include prototyping for product development to creating actual patient solutions, such as dental crowns, prosthetics, implants, human tissues, and organs, as well as 3D printed surgical instruments.

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  • Architecture

    3D Printing in Architecture3D architectural models enable businesses to showcase accurate details of projects. Architects also have greater design flexibility when they use 3D CAD models.

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  • Jewellery

    3D Printing in JewelryThe ability to print objects with complex geometries, with precision and accuracy, makes 3D printing a perfect business solution for jewelry manufacturing.

Currently, research is ongoing into making 3D printing more acceptable at the level of the consumers themselves. While a 3D printing service provider remains the expert, it will be interesting to note consumer uptake on the technology in the future.

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