Tag Archives: rapid prototyping

3D Printing and the Army

Since my last post about 3D printing in the Navy garnered more likes than any other post to date, I figured we should continue the military trend and discuss how the Army uses the technology.

Actually, the Army has just as many uses for similar applications of 3D printing.

State-of-the-art 3D printers cut costs, turnaround time

Much like isolated ships having trouble accessing key components on the high seas, forward Army bases often find themselves weeks away from their supply chains.

Recently, a shortage of parts was delaying delivery of Harris radios. The radios required the installation of small dust caps prior to shipping to the customer. Finding and getting the part from a vendor could have taken weeks; so instead, Mechanical Engineer Eugene Haikes designed a 3-D model of the part and the depot printed 600 dust caps in 16 hours.

“If the depot wanted to produce the dust caps but didn’t have a rubber mold for them, we could have expected to pay anywhere from $5,000 to $15,000 for the mold,” said Mead. “Because Eugene was able to come up with the model, we were able to produce the caps for only a dollar apiece while trimming days, if not weeks, off of our anticipated delivery date.”

Just like the Navy, advantages don’t stop there, as 3D printing can create objects too complicated for traditional machining and casting processes.

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Facial Reconstruction through 3D Scan, Print

UK Doctors are reverse engineering and reconstructing a man’s face, thanks to 3D technologies. Warning – some images could be graphic.

Eric Moger lost half of his face to cancer and as a result could no longer eat, drink or speak.  Doctors scanned his face and mirrored the “good” side over the “bad.”  The result is a model of the face very similar to how it used to look.  From that the team of doctors was able to develop a prosthesis that allows the patient use of his mouth again.

For the first time in five years, Eric Moger is able to speak clearly without holding his mouth, eat without a feeding tube, and hold his head high while going to the pub with his friends.

In the words of Mr. Moger, himself, “It is a great feeling to look in the mirror and see a whole face again. I am amazed at what they have done  – it just looks so like me. I also have something to look forward to, as Karen and I are planning to finally get married this summer.’

Mr MogerMr Moger

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3D Printing and the Navy

Navy, sea, ship, build, piping, ducting, parts, Proceedings

Even the Navy is getting involved in 3D Printing/Additive Manufacturing.

Highlighted advantages include making complicated hulls with complex internal geometries in one fell swoop, as well as having print manufacturing on board vessels to deliver on demand replacement parts.

 

 

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RapidMade Has a Booth 744 at NW Machine Tools Expo

In addition to our speaking engagement at this year’s Northwest Machine Tool Expo (Oregon Convention Center – 777 NE MLK Jr. Blvd. Portland OR), RapidMade picked up booth 744 at the last minute!  Please come visit us at the show.  We will have all the latest samples of Additive Manufacturing, 3D Printing, and 3D scanners in the booth.

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75% of Skull Replaced Due to 3D Printed Plastic Implants

Thanks to FDA approval of the process just last February 18th, Oxford Performance Materials replaced 75% of a patient’s skull using a 3D printed replica as an implant.

They were able to take a digital scan of the patient’s skull and turn it into a 3D plastic part.  This plastic was printed so that the edges had very high porous detail, allowing for the bones to grow into and fuse to the plastic.  This allows for lower chance of rejection and an overall stronger new skull than traditional implants.

Skull

The plastic is a high performance medical grade polyetherketoneketone (PEKK) developed by Oxford Performance Materials for the EOS P800, a plastic selective laser sintering (SLS) machine.  Selective laser sintering fuses layers of thermoplastics together using an extremely precise laser.

Immediately, the company envisions that 300 to 500  patients could use this implant every month in the United States alone.

But don’t just stop at skulls.  OPM’s president, Scott DeFelice says, “If you can replace a bony void in someone’s head next to the brain, you have a pretty good platform for filling bony voids elsewhere.”

The company is submitting for FDA approval of bone implants for many other parts of the body.  Each individual bone, including the skull, could be between a 50 and 100 million dollar market.

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9 Ways 3D Printing Will Change the World

Do you remember when StarTrek or The Jetsons aired? Both shows seemed to have accurately predicted the way technology has advanced in the past decade with their replicator machines. Although this emerging form of technology is widely recognized as a way to produce mass amounts of prototypes and other forms of commerce, it’s potential reaches further than that. 3D printing is becoming a crucial part of manufacturing advanced systems and replacement parts for almost every industry.

1). Medical Industry

2). Advances in Research

3). Product Prototyping

4). Historic Preservation

5). AEC

6). Advanced Manufacturing

7). Food Industries

8). Automotive

9). Jewelry/Accessories

Read the full article here!

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Iron Baby Comes Alive With 3D Printing

Remember, the Iron Baby video that went viral on YouTube last year? (If you don’t, check it out below!)

Chris Wentworth approached the makers of the video, independent film director Patrick Boivin and friend CG artist STROB, and ultimately created this cool 3D figure of Iron Baby.

Read more about the process: http://www.mbtmag.com/articles/2012/04/iron-baby-comes-alive

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What’s the Difference Between Rapid Prototyping & 3D Printing?

Many people often wonder what the distinguishing factor between rapid prototyping and 3D printing is. Well, this snippet by 3Dprinting.com gives a concise explanation of the key differences between the two.

http://3dprinting.com/news/rapid-prototyping-and-3d-printing/

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