The journey to utilising 3D printing across the manufacturing space

Necessity, they say, is the mother of invention and that is certainly the case with Kora.

Founder Steve Burrows was already enjoying considerable success with his first and long-term venture, Impex Parts Limited, a company that has been supplying OEM and Aftermarket parts to the motor trade for over 20 years. Changes to EU Motor Vehicle Block Exemption had seen demand for “Original Equipment Parts” increase rapidly and Impex was regularly receiving requests for parts that it was finding difficult to source externally.

Kora SC

The company decided to explore 3D printing as a solution and, finding it worked well, went on to own several commercially available 3D printing machines. Initial success soon turned to disappointment, however, when these 3D printing machines began regularly breaking down, requiring Impex engineers to spend a considerable amount of time fixing and maintaining them. Confident in both the skills of his engineers and the technology but frustrated that a better alternative did not seem to exist, Steve decided to develop his own 3D printer machine and Kora was born.

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Is 3D printing ready for scaled production?

While additive manufacturing has received attention for its promise of mass customization and generative design, not everyone believes it’s ready for large-quantity production.

Forecast 3D, 3D printing, additive manufacturing, prototyping, mass customization, HP multi-jet 3D printing

3D Printing is revolutionizing design and customization. It has become the go-to process for prototyping. As an additive manufacturing (AM) process, 3D printing has proved effective in many applications in Aerospace and Medical, but technical constraints may be holding 3D printing back from become that next manufacturing revolution.

For one, few companies have redesigned their products and supply chains for AM friendliness. “One of the biggest barriers to additive manufacturing is that the way companies utilize the technology doesn’t match what their production requires,” Ken Burns, technical director at Forecast 3D, told Design News. “When opportunities to use additive manufacturing come to the production side, there are so many barriers. You need to do x, y, and z, to make it work, and that affects the price point.”

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INTERVIEW: Ivaldi launches on-demand 3D printing service for maritime sector with Wilhelmsen

Advanced and additive manufacturing service bureau Ivaldi Group has partnered with Wilhelmsen, the largest maritime network in the world. Operating from a new additive manufacturing facility in Singapore, Ivaldi will provide Wilhelmsen with on-demand spare part production for ships and other maritime equipment, potentially servicing upwards of 100 vessels per day.

Spare parts 3D printing at Ivaldi. Photo via Ivaldi Group

Speaking with Espen Sivertsen, CEO of Ivaldi Group, 3D Printing Industry learned more about the company’s latest move, and the apparent rise of additive manufacturing in maritime.

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The 6 types of manufacturing processes: The impact of AM

AM will overtake Discrete and Job Shop manufacturing.

Manufacturing processes

The arrival of Additive Manufacturing (AM) as a valid alternative to the original five manufacturing processes is really going to shake up the factory. Within 3 to 5 years, engineering and manufacturing leaders will look out at their production floors and wonder if they should tool-up or modify an assembly line for a new product or just buy the 3D or Metal AM machines they need for the volume they anticipate.

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Webinar: Ready for flight: Gaining a competitive advantage using additive manufacturing

The ability to produce parts with repeatable characteristics and consistent quality is a key factor to the increased adoption of 3D printing in the multi-billion dollar aircraft interior parts segment. 3D printing aircraft interior parts can have key inherent benefits for both supply chain efficiency and for the product offering of aircraft interior manufacturers.

Hear from John Wilczynski, Deputy Director – Technology Development for the National Center for Defense Manufacturing and Machining and Chris Holshouser, Director, Specialty Solutions at Stratasys, as they discuss the challenge of using FDM additive manufacturing for certified aircraft applications and the Stratasys solution that includes the new Aircraft Interiors Configuration Fortus 900mc.

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Hybrid AM Supply Chains: The future of manufacturing?

A map of proposed metal AM hubs based on demand patterns across the United States.

The proportion of the manufacturing market that can be addressed by 3D printing technology is growing by the day. Improvements in underlying additive processes have brought economic feasibility to applications across the entire spectrum of 3D-printable materials, but the trend has been most pronounced in metals. Up to now, metal AM’s strong ability to occupy an important place in the value chain for OEMs of all sizes hasn’t matched up with its relatively low levels of adoption. The issue can be summarized thus: the massive business advantages that incorporating AM might unlock remain off limits for most companies because the costs associated with bringing the technology in-house remains prohibitive.

Inspired by this challenge, a new research effort published earlier this summer in Additive Manufacturingtook a close look at a practical way to make the value of metal AM accessible to more companies. The paper, titled “Hybrid manufacturing—integrating traditional manufacturers with additive manufacturing (AM) supply chain,” imagines what it would look like to develop a system in which additive manufacturing “hubs” throughout the country were brought online by independent providers. These hubs would then be accessible as vendors for those OEMs that might have niche uses for metal 3D printing, but are unable to make the technology investment on their own. The study paints a tantalizing picture of how a hybridized supply chain might propel the manufacturing sector forward by democratizing access to this revolutionary technology.

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Manufacturing in 3D: It’s changing the rules and how you compete

Digital manufacturing is disrupting entire industry sectors, so be prepared to move quickly.

If you continue to see 3D manufacturing as theoretical, think again. It has been used to print everything from organs to custom footwear, and NASA even made a rocket engine injector from a 3D printer. However, most manufacturers haven’t looked at how they’ll incorporate digital manufacturing, much less begin to adopt it.

The push for personalized products, democratized innovation, rapid urbanization, changing demographics and sustainability are big trends that are changing our world, and the way work happens will dramatically change along with them. 3D manufacturing can help businesses navigate these trends by reducing time-to-market, improving inventory management, lowering logistics costs and increasing flexibility to meeting customer needs.

Recognizing its enormous potential, many public-private collaborations across Canada encourage 3D printing adoption in industries such as aerospace, automotive, consumer packaged goods, telecommunications and healthcare. This, along with the most recent PLANT Manufacturers’ Outlook report, sets digital manufacturing as a primary area for investment.

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3D Printing moves into manufacturing with gusto

At this year’s Rapid TCT show, additive manufacturing systems were on display, and booth-by-booth, we heard the rationale for serial 3D printing production, i.e., manufacturing.

Jabil, Stratysis, 3D printing, additive manufacturing, serial production, trade showsTrade shows often come with an unstated theme. The second LiveWorx conference in 2015 came with the theme: “IoT can be deployed from product development through manufacturing and customer use.” A couple years ago, Siemen’s PLM World users’ conference was all about digital twins. At Advanced Design and Manufacturing in Cleveland last year, presenters and attendees were talking about how small- to mid-size companies were ready for smart manufacturing technology.

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3D printing moves into manufacturing with gusto

Trade shows often come with an unstated theme. The second LiveWorx conference in 2015 came with the theme: “IoT can be deployed from product development through manufacturing and customer use.” A couple years ago, Siemen’s PLM World users’ conference was all about digital twins. At Advanced Design and Manufacturing in Cleveland last year, presenters and attendees were talking about how small- to mid-size companies were ready for smart manufacturing technology.

Jabil, Stratysis, 3D printing, additive manufacturing, serial production, trade shows

At the Rapid TCT 3D printing show last month, the unstated theme on the trade show floor was: 3D printing is ready for product manufacturing. Not just small runs, not just custom production, but honest-to-goodness manufacturing across multiple industries. The buzzword on the show floor was “serial production”—code for “manufacturing.”

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How researchers are reducing limitations and expanding 3D printing into manufacturing

Movies often portray technology in a cool or sexy finished product that defies the laws of physics, but it seems like it’s just not as entertaining to show how the sausage is made. In the James Bond films, for example, gadgets seems to come about by magic courtesy of Q.

World record

Some might think 3D printing is different, and it iscool. However, this article covers a few things happening behind the scenes that are allowing for a 3D-printed future. After all, tackling challenges such as cost, build space, and speed is necessary before James Bond can drive off in his cool 3D-printed sports car.

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