The Additive Manufacturing section of this blog is for PADT customers in particular, and users of 3D Printing in general. We hope you find it useful and entertaining.
Over time we will post information below. Feel free to use the search to find specific information. We also have some non-changing information on our resource page.
Posted on February 7, 2019, by: Trevor Rubinoff
In the factory of the future automation is king.
Manufacturers can drastically reduce lead times, reduce labor costs, and increase overall efficiency through the use of robotics at several stages in their workflow, each performing a different function. While each function serves a unique purpose specific to the task it will execute, they all utilize an essential component known as End-of-Arm tooling (EOAT).
Traditionally, companies that produce EOAT have used extruded aluminum, or machined aluminum frames, often making them heavy and cumbersome. One manufacturer however, has found a solution to reduce weight without sacrificing strength or durability, using 3D printing.
Download the case study to learn more about additive manufacturing's place on the factory floor, and how you can use it to eliminate the need for heavy and overly complex parts.
Create parts that are 50% lighter, and designed based on your needs, not limited by your manufacturing process.
Press Release: Grant to ASU, PADT, and Others for Advancement of 3D Printing Post-Processing Techniques
Posted on January 24, 2019, by: Eric MillerWe are very pleased to announce that PADT is part of another successful Federal grant with ASU in the area of Additive Manufacturing. This is the second funded research effort we have been part of in the past twelve months and also our second America Makes funded project. It is another great example of PADT's cooperation with ASU and other local businesses and also shows how Arizona is becoming a hub for innovation around this important and growing technology. Please find the official press release on this new partnership below and here in PDF and HTML. You can find links to our other recent research grants here:
- NASA STTR with ASU on Biomimicry
- America Makes grant with ASU for Lattice Structure Characterization
Posted on January 18, 2019, by: Trevor Rubinoff
With the substantial growth of more advanced manufacturing technologies over the past decade, the engineering world has seen additive manufacturing lead the way towards the future of innovation.
While the process of additive manufacturing, has proven to yield valuable results that can drastically reduce lead time and overall cost, without an effective design and an in-depth understanding of the process behind it end users of the tool will struggle to achieve the high-quality results they initially envisioned.
PADT's Principle and Co-Owner Eric Miller sat down with David Budiac of Software Connect to discuss the use of software when it comes to Additive Manufacturing, including integrating MES & QMS into your process, specific steps for ensuring success with AM software.
Check out the blog post featuring notes from their discussion here.
You can also view a recording of PADT's webinar discussing design for Additive Manufacturing below:
Posted on November 13, 2018, by: Trevor Rubinoff
Press Release: PADT’S Quality Management System Receives AS9100D(2016) + ISO 9001:2015 Certification
Posted on October 16, 2018, by: Eric MillerAdditive Manufacturing has been making a transition from a prototyping tool to an accepted way to make tooling and end-use parts across industries, and specifically in the Aerospace industry. PADT has always been at the leading edge of this transformation and today we are pleased to announce the next step in this evolution: The Quality Management System PADT uses to manage our scanning and 3D printing services have been certified to be compliant to the AS9100D(2016) and ISO9001:2015 standards. This certification will allow our Aerospace customers to come to PADT with the knowledge that an accredited quality organization, Orion Registrar, Inc., has audited our QMS and it meets the requirements of the latest aerospace manufacturing quality standards. Developing our QMS to meet these standards has been an ongoing effort in PADT's Advanced Manufacturing Department that separates the scanning and 3D Printing services we offer from most service providers. This investment in developing a robust and effective QMS and the certification it has received reaffirms our commitment to not just print or scan parts for people. PADT takes quality, process, and customer satisfaction seriously. Even if they are not printing or scanning Aerospace components, customers benefit from our certified QMS. Every project is conducted under an established system that builds in quality, inspects for it, and continuously improves. This milestone would not have been achieved without the dedication of our quality team along with the cooperation and enthusiasm of our Advanced Manufacturing staff. From front-office to facilities to machine operators, everyone did their part to establish a high standard and then achieve certification. The best way to understand the advantages of how PADT does Scanning and 3D Printing is to try us out. You can also learn more by visiting our Aerospace Manufacturing page where we talk about our QMS and the services it covers. Please find the official press release on this new partnership below and here in PDF and HTML If you have any questions about our certification, additive manufacturing, or scanning & reverse engineering, reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 480.813.4884.
Posted on August 27, 2018, by: Eric MillerSomeone in the business of giving advice on social situation once said that you need four ingredients for an event to be a success: great conversation with the right people at the right location with the right food and beverage. All of that came together last week in Littleton Colorado for PADT's third annual Colorado Additive Manufacturing Data. The weather cooperated and we were able to gather under a tent at the St Patrick's Brewing Company right on the Platte River to spend the afternoon talking about 3D Printing. PADT's very own Norm Stucker hosted, kicking off the event with a welcome from Littleton's Mayor, Debbie Brinkman. This was followed by presentations:
- PADT's Co-Owner Rey Chu shared his thoughts on being successful with AM
- Scott Sevcik, VP of Manufacturing Solutions at Stratasys went over the Stratasys Product Roadmap
- I gave a high-level overview on Design for Additive Manufacturing
- The ANSYS Additive Manufacturing simulation tools were reviewed by PADT engineer Doug Oatis
- Shannon McNeil from SNC
- Brian Kaplun from Lockheed Martin
- Robert McLoughlin from Stratasys
- Jeff Sokol from Ball Aerospace
- Sabrina Ball from United Launch Alliance
Posted on August 8, 2018, by: Eric MillerWe have a fantastic visit this morning from Cory McCloskey from KSAZ Fox10, one of our local TV Stations. They gave us a chance to show off our new Carbon On-Demand Manufacturing technology, some of the printing with do with Stratasys Objet technology for medical applications, and even spoke to our interns Garrett and Austin about the work they are doing with NASA. If the embedded video doesn't work, you can view the two segments their website: http://www.fox10phoenix.com/morning-show/351998877-video It is always great when we can show off any bit of what we do here at PADT.
Press Release: New Digital Manufacturing Facility for On-Demand Delivery of Production Quality Parts Opened at PADT
Posted on June 21, 2018, by: Eric MillerPADT is very proud to announce that our new manufacturing facility that uses 3D Printing technology to make production parts in volume, is open for business. When we bought our first Additive Manufacturing machine in 1994 we dreamed of the day when we could have several machines quickly making complete plastic parts in one step. Carbon's Carbon’s Digital Light Synthesis™ (DLS) was the technology we were waiting for. It is here now, and we are now making real parts with injection molded quality. We chose to leverage Carbon's technology because of the three key differentiators in their system:
- Digital light projection is much faster than a laser or print head.
- Oxygen permeable optics enables accurate project while keeping the part from sticking to the optics.
- Programmable liquid resins produce parts with excellent mechanical properties, resolution and surface finish.
- On-Demand Manufacturing Web Page
- Background on Carbon's DLS Technology, including a great video that explains it all.
- Our On-Demand Manufacturing Brochure
Posted on May 7, 2018, by: James BarkerWaking up at 3 A.M. isn’t something I like to do often. However, for this conference I was about to attend, it was worth the early rise! Caffeine is a must to get through a long day of walking around and being educated by all the different new and old manufacturers of 3D printers. If you have been around 3D printing, you know there are really two conferences that are above the rest; AMUG and RAPID. Here are some of the things that were announced that I believe are the most significant at RAPID. Stratasys: Stratasys didn’t disappoint this year in introducing a new carbon fiber 3D printer, material, and metal technology that will be coming in a year+. We are very familiar with the Nylon 12 Carbon Fiber reinforced material that Stratasys has. It is THE best Nylon 12 carbon fiber material on the market and there are a few factors as to why that is the case. One is that they are using longer strands of Carbon Fiber than the competitor along with 35% carbon fiber filled parts compared to 15%. Soluble support is huge for this material as well, along with 2 to 5 times faster printer speeds. Check out how One Wheel is using this printer to help with manufacturing their cool skateboard: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tOojDgd7KVE ANTERO 800 is the new material that Stratasys released recently. This material is being used in many amazing ways. Lockheed Martin/NASA/Stratasys/PADT collaborated in a very successful task to get flight approved hardware for one of the next missions to space. Below is the full story on this new and exciting ESD version of Antero 800 FDM material. Could your company also benefit from using this type of material? We would like to help! http://www.3ders.org/articles/20180418-lockheed-martin-padt-stratasys-to-3d-print-over-100-parts-for-nasas-orion-capsule.html Vero Magenta V and Vero Yellow V are the new Polyjet materials to help with getting more vibrant colors along with deeper red and brighter yellow. 500,000 color combinations can be achieved now with these 2 materials that have been improved upon. Absolutely beautiful parts can be made with a Stratasys J750 or J735. Metal We have been asking (and have been asked) for metal for the longest time! When is Stratasys going to jump into the metal game? One of the main reasons why I went to RAPID this year was to see Stratasys Metal parts. They did not disappoint. As far as what density these metal parts are, the process for printing, and when a machine will be available, that is still the big unknown. One thing mentioned at the conference is that they are wanting to make metal 3D printing affordable to all with the ability to 3D print metal 80% cheaper than anything available right now. How this compares to what Desktop Metal, Mark Forged, HP, and others who proclaim to make metal parts cheaper than the Laser or Electron Beam options is yet to be known. Stratasys wants to be able to provide value to the metal market by focusing on areas that are lacking, which is Aluminum. Always good to have competition against the large companies of metal as it makes everyone get better at what they are doing. Read more about this machine and what Phil Reeves (VP of Strategic Consulting from Stratasys) has to say in an exclusive interview with TCT. Also below are a few pictures I took in the Stratasys booth of their metal parts that were on display. www.tctmagazine.com/tct-events/3d-printing-at-rapid-tct/stratasys-metal-3d-printing/ Software was featured big time at RAPID because it unlocks the ability to 3D print amazing parts like this that was featured in the EOS booth. Lattice structures and topology optimized parts! There were a lot of companies present at RAPID that highlighted where the industry is headed. Materials with vibrant color capabilities was one such area receiving a lot of attention. While competitors have introduced machines that are capable of printing in a wide variety of colors, they still fall short when compared to the Stratasys Polyjet offerings. Machines such as the J750 and J735 both offer a similar range of color compared to other companies on the market, but surpass them when it comes to material options, applications, and overall usability. I enjoyed talking with all the major 3D printer manufactures at RAPID. One questions I would ask each of them is, what makes your system better than the competitors? I loved hearing the sales pitch about their machines and there was some great insight gained by asking this.At the end of the day, it all comes down to how you are wanting to use the 3D printer. At PADT we have many different 3D printers, and while we see and understand the appeal of the various different offerings on the market today, there is a reason why we continue to resell and support the brands we do. Let us know how we can help you out and any questions that you have with 3D printing.
Posted on March 29, 2018, by: James BarkerPADT's Salt Lake City office has been involved with fulfillment of medical 3d Printing of several cases where customers are exploring the value of multi-color and multi-material medical 3D models by using the Stratasys J750 or the Connex 3. One of those cases was presented at the Mayo Clinic’s Collaborative 3D Printing in Medical Practice 2018 course, which was held in Arizona this year. An Intermountain Healthcare facility in Salt Lake City needed help with 3D printing a patient-specific anatomy, as they were looking to better their understanding of the value of 3D printing using multi-color printer beyond their existing in-house capabilities. In the picture below, Rami Shorti, PhD., a senior Biomechanical Engineering Scientist at Intermountain Healthcare, wrote: “A patient with a horseshoe kidney and multiple large symptomatic stones, who had failed Extracorporeal Shock Wave Lithotripsy and Ureteroscopy Treatment, was used to evaluate the benefit of using different imaging modalities intraoperatively.” Working with us in Salt Lake City, Rami Shorti, PhD, prepared the patient-specific medical imaging segmentation, post-processing of the patient anatomy, and finally generated for us a 3D printable CAD model that we were able to print using a Stratasys Objet 260 Connex 3. Since our office is located just around the corner from the hospital, we were able to work closely with Rami to identify the colors and finish of the final part. The Connex 3 printer was introduced in 2014 as the only printer in the world that could combine three different model materials in a single print pass. Most 3D printers can only print with one material at a time, which is one of the main reasons why this technology is preferred for medical use cases along with its added precision. In 2017, Stratasys introduced the J750, which again is an industry first, becoming the only printer in the world that can print 6 different materials at the same time. Combinations of hard plastics and rubber materials allow for a range of shore hardness values along with the ability to mix three primary colors to print 500,000 different colors. With a quick turnaround needed, we decided to use the Connex 3 and were amazed that we were able to print the parts in two batches. Within 48 hours of receiving the STL files from Dr. Shorti, we were able to 3D print, post-process, and deliver the parts in time for the surgeon to review the time-sensitive surgical planning guides using the mockup. To enhance the transparency of the parts, we simply applied a few coats of Rust-Oleum Clear Gloss to the 3D printed part. Now we were able to relax and wait for it to dry. Below is a picture of the finished products displayed at the Mayo Clinic event. “3D printing added a level of benefit because of its ability to showcase the stones, renal pelvis, and renal arteries and veins simultaneously through the image fusion step done in Mimics software and with the use of specific materials and contrasting colors. In addition, its ability to be held and manipulated in space was observed to be beneficial especially for patient education.” - Rami Shorti, PhD., senior Biomechanical Engineering Scientist, Intermountain Healthcare PADT is excited to continue our work with Intermountain Healthcare, and grow this relationship as new opportunities arise to leverage multi-material printing.
Posted on March 16, 2018, by: Eric MillerWe are very proud of our Additive Manufacturing intern Austin Suder who just won Future Engineers “Two for the Crew” Challenge, presented by the ASME Foundation and NASA. The challenge asked to invent a multifunctional object that combined two items into one for 3-D printing by crew members aboard the International Space Station (ISS). As a winner he will receive a trip to Washington DC, a MakerBot 3D printer donated to the orginization of his choice, and best of all, his design will be printed on the ISS and used by the astronauts. Austin's design was a Carabiner Tool Clip that combined a way to easo;u secure a tool and hold the sockets and drivers that the tool needs. After designing the part he then used simulation to iterate on the design with virtual testing, and then he 3D Printed a prototype on his home 3D Printer. Austin started this project by researching what problems the astronauts faced. He found that a big problem was that tools would drift off in the micro-gravity environment of the station. This was annoying when they are working inside the station, and a critical problem when they are on a space walk. He also realized that they used a separate "holder" to keep the sockets and screw driver heads that the tool needed. Using this knowledge he developed a simple to operate carabiner to secure the tether on the hand tool to the astronaut and then use that same part to hole the sockets and drivers. But he did not stop there. He also learned what he could about the MadeInSpace 3D Printer that is on the station, and adapted the design to make sure the printer could make easily. Austin then used simulation to make sure the design was strong and robust. Then he printed his samples on his own home printer. Local Phoenix station ABC15 stopped by PADT yesterday to interview Austin and here is their story: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ofAZjlFOONM Much of Austin's knowledge and skill comes from his involvement in his school robotics team, and he will be donating the MakerBot he won to that team. We hare very proud of Austin's accomplishments. He works at PADT as an intern in the Advanced Manufacturing department focused on 3D Printing, doing CAD, running the machines, cleaning parts, and being our in-house expert on desktop 3D Printing. He will be graduating from High School this year and attending ASU as a Mechanical Engineer. We can not wait to see what he does next!
Posted on March 16, 2018, by: Eric MillerIn November of last year we did a press release on new Additive Manufacturing Laboratory at Metropolitan State University in Denver. Since then all of the partners have been hard at work getting the lab up and running. Last week MSUD released an interview with the University President about the lab as well as a tour of the lab. It is a great look at how academia and industry are working together to push advanced manufacturing forward. Not just on equipment, but also with internships and value added engineering at the university. Take a look: https://vimeo.com/258883677 PADT is proud to have been a key member of the team and a continued partner for the lab along with Stratasys. If you want to learn more about how PADT can help your company or university create partnerships like this or leverage 3D Printing in other ways, please contact PADT. We love this stuff!
Posted on February 1, 2018, by: James BarkerMy first time to Miami was a success! Last year, Stratasys held the partner kickoff in New Orleans and that was when they launched the F1, 2, and 3 series. Since then they have sold over 800 units of these types of FDM 3D printers in the USA. This year in Miami, they did announce something new but it still has a few quarters to go until there is an official release. To say I am excited about what is coming is an understatement! In fact, Stratasys is going to be releasing one new printer here in a few weeks. I am excited for the direction they are going. During this partner kickoff, they mentioned a huge price drop on all of their Polyjet printers! Send us a message for the latest pricing at email@example.com. As for PADT employees that were in attendance, we had quite the representation this year. Rey Chu (Co-Owner of PADT), Mario Vargas (Manager of Hardware Sales), Norman Stucker (Colorado Territory Manager), Anthony Wagoner (Utah Territory Manager), Kathryn Pesta (Sales Operations Manager), and me (James Barker, Sr. Application Engineer). Pictured above from left to right is Mario Vargas, Kathryn Pesta, James Barker, and Anthony Wagoner. Above is a picture of the Stratasys Panel that was open to some Q&A. 2nd from the right is S. Scott Crump who is the inventor of FDM (fused deposition modeling) printers 30 years ago. Below is a picture of the anniversary info for Stratasys along with Objet (Polyjet technology 20 years) and the merger between the two companies is now 5 years old! My introduction to 3D printers started 8 years ago with an Objet Eden 500 printer at L-3 Communications where I ran their 3D print lab. 6 months later we got an additional Polyjet printer which was a Connex 500. Amazing that we were able to justify purchasing another high quality machine after a few months of operating the Objet Eden 500! A few years later we got our first Uprint FDM printer from a sister company that no longer had a need for it. After using the Uprint for a few months, I was made aware of some of these thermoplastic materials that could only be printed on the production grade FDM machines. I created a business case to get the Fortus 450 and had every material option available at that time to print with (ABS family of materials, ASA, PC, Nylon 12, Ultem 9085, and Ultem 1010). I love both of these technologies and am confident that they provide the best solution for either rapid prototyping or tooling applications. We even have many customers that are printing production parts with these very precise 3D printers. One customer that is printing production quality parts is Laika Studios, who has produced these movies: Kubo and the Two Strings, The Boxtrolls, ParaNorman, and Coraline. The presentation they made for us on their stop motion animation was so much fun! 10 years ago for Nightmare before Christmas there were 800+ hand sculpted faces made. For Kubo and the Two Strings, there were 64,000 facial expressions that were all 3d printed with a Stratasys J750. Another fun fact about the movie is that it took 60 hours of 3D printing for one second of film time to be created which is why it takes 2-3 years to complete a film. Moonbeast is a 3ft long puppet that is entirely comprised of 3d printed parts which is the largest character they have done to date. If you have watched Kubo and the Two Strings, it appears to be computer animated but in reality it is stop animation with 3D printed parts! Here is a fun short video (13 seconds) of what the Stratasys printer looks like as it is printing and then support material being removed from the head with different facial expressions. https://youtu.be/YBoAXrlCfFA Matt Gimble, who works for Penske as a Production Manager, shared with us many of the different applications that have helped them save a lot of money since they’ve incorporated 3D printing. Racing is rapidly evolving and is very technical nowadays with a huge emphasis on engineering. 3D printing gives them the tools to meet the new challenges. There are many different great uses they’ve had for 3D printing – from a redesigned rear gear pump design, to a new exhaust tailpipe. Even production parts are made with Stratasys’ newest material, Nylon 12CF. This is a high strength chopped carbon fiber filled Nylon 12. Many that use this material are awe-inspired with its performance! The Superspeedway side view mirror is made out of this material and saved Team Penske 4-6 weeks – which is how long it takes for the mold to be made. Then what if the mold needs altering? Crew Helmet Light/Camera mount is also made in this great thermoplastic/composite material called Nylon 12CF. The above Fuel Probe was re-engineered and is lighter than its predecessor, plus more ergonomical to help with delivering fuel in a timely manner. Pre-preg carbon fiber sleeves when wrapped around a soluble support material and after the autoclave heating process, the soluble core is dissolved in a sodium hydroxide cleaning tank leaving only the carbon fiber. PADT is a manufacturer for the cleaning tanks that are sold with any Stratasys FDM 3d printer. The core is made out of ST-130 material which is perfect for this application or sacrificial tooling. Ultem 1010 was used as well to create carbon fiber layup tools in a fraction of the time it would have taken for the steel molds to be made. Typical turnaround is 1-3 days, as compared to 4-6 weeks. These are all great applications by Team Penske! Well done!! We learned a lot at the partner kickoff. Luckily I was able to get this great picture with S. Scott Crump and Mario Vargas! To this day Scott is still inventing and is a major contributor to innovating at Stratasys. While talking with him and Mario, he started talking about these many adventures that he goes on. Scuba diving off the island of Tortuga and having many sharks swimming above isn’t for the faint of heart, yet it is where Scott seems to find his happy place. My wife flew out Thursday night to come see Miami with me. It was my first time visiting Florida and we had a phenomenal time there. We put 800 miles on the rental car driving all around. Driving down the Florida Keys all the way to Key West was a blast and if you ever go to Key West, make sure to get a Cuban sandwich from the restaurant Bien! It is MUY MUY BIEN! The islands are so beautiful! We also went to the Everglades where we got an airboat tour and where I even held a 4 year old Alligator and gave it a kiss on the back of its head. My little girls shriek every time they see the picture! We had a great time in Florida! As we now look to the future, watch out for some exciting updates about new products that are coming! Stratasys, in my opinion, is going to continue being a leader in the Additive Manufacturing realm and I can’t wait to help announce some of the new equipment once it is available! Any questions you have, you can direct them to me at James.firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks!
Posted on October 25, 2017, by: Eric MillerThe addition of a new UnionTech RSPro 450 further establishes PADT as the leader in Additive Manufacturing technology in the Southwestern US. With a build volume of 17.7 x 17.7 x 15.75 inches, this state of the art Stereolithography(SLA) machine will triple the company’s capacity to 3D Print with SLA technology at this Las Vegas print shop. It not only allows the printing of larger parts, it can also create multiple smaller parts in less time. It will join PADT’s two existing SLA machines along with the Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM), PolyJet, and Selective Laser Sintering (SLS) solutions currently producing parts daily for their customers across the country. “When we started the company in 1994, one of our first purchases was an SLA machine. It started our 3D Printing services business, and the technology is still heavily used today.” Said Rey Chu, a co-owner of PADT and the leader for PADT’s Advanced Manufacturing efforts. “This new system gives us added capacity in size, speed, and material choices. We looked at a wide range of SLA systems and felt that UnionTech provided the quality and robustness we need to keep our customers happy.” The new system was delivered the second week of October and will be calibrated and producing customer parts by the end of the month. One of the advantages of the machine is the easy setup and strong calibration capabilities. The team will be able to produce parts that are about 75% larger than they can currently. The additional volume and speed will allow for three times as many parts to be printed in a given week than is possible with the current two smaller and older machines. Initially, a new rigid ABS-like material will be used that produces very strong and precise parts with white plastic. PADT’s existing pre- and post-processing tools will be applied to this process with little change.
The UnionTech RSPRO 450 SLA SystemUnionTech systems are the most popular machines for SLA Additive Manufacturing outside of the United States. They have proven to be reliable, easy-to-use, accurate, and fast. They are also an open system, allowing users to use any SLA compatible resin that can usually be acquired at a more affordable price than proprietary material solutions. Stereolithography is the oldest commercial 3D Printing process. It uses photo-curable liquid resins to build parts one layer at a time. A vat in the machine is filled with liquid material, and a plate is placed just under the surface. Then an ultraviolet laser draws on the very top layer of the liquid, and all of wherever the laser traces, the liquid turns to a solid. The plate is lowered, a new layer of liquid is spread on top, and the laser creates a new layer. The process repeats until the part or parts are made. The UnionTech machine is a refined and proven application of this technology that was a perfect match for PADT’s current needs. Also, the company itself was great to work with, and the local sales and support team have been outstanding. As the team learns the system, they are finding it to be easy to use as well as simple to maintain and calibrate. The initial quality of parts has been outstanding.
PADT’s 3D Printing ServicesPADT has been the Southwest’s leading provider of 3D Printing services since the company was started over 23 years ago. The company has survived industry consolidation and a vastly changing landscape by focusing on providing high-quality 3D Printed parts to customers using Fused Deposition Modeling, Polyjet Printing, Selective Laser Sintering, and Stereolithography systems combined with one of the most experienced and knowledgeable teams in the Additive Manufacturing space. Located in the ASU Research Park in Tempe, Arizona, PADT’s advanced manufacturing facility currently features ten machines dedicated to printing parts for customers. The lab includes a full machine shop, part finishing facilities, and an advanced scanning and inspection capability. This added capability is yet another reason why so many companies large and small count on PADT for their 3D Printing needs. Contact us today to learn more about our 3D Printing Services or:
PADT Partners with 3D Printing Disruptor Carbon to Offer Production Part Manufacturing to the Southwest
Posted on October 23, 2017, by: Eric MillerThe long-term promise of 3D Printing has always been using the technology to replace traditional manufacturing as a way to make production parts. The various technologies that are considered Additive Manufacturing have been fantastic for prototyping and making tools that are used to manufacturing end-use parts, but rarely work well for production. Carbon is literally turning the 3D printing world upside down by introducing real production capabilities with their systems. And now that PADT has joined Carbon’s Production Partner Program, on-demand manufacturing using 3D Printing is now a reality in the Southwestern US. The Production Partner program establishes vetted service providers with 3D Printing and manufacturing experience as manufacturing centers. This allows customers who are early adopters of CARBON’s exciting technology, to find a trusted source for their production parts. PADT was chosen to participate because of our twenty-plus years of experience as a 3D Printing service provider and more than $5,000,000 in injection molding projects, along with in-house product development, scanning, simulation, and inspection. PADT will be adding three Carbon M2 printers to our existing 3D Printing facility at our main office in the ASU Research Park in Tempe, Arizona. The first two machines will be available for production in early 2018, and the third machine will be online by early summer. Customers will then be able to order production quality parts in volume and receive them within a week. PADT’s investment and this partnership make the dream of On Demand manufacturing of complex plastic components a reality. “We have been looking for a low volume plastic manufacturing solution that uses 3D Printing for some time.” Said Rey Chu, co-owner of PADT “Since we started the company we have been providing soft tooling and rapid injection molding. Once we saw the Carbon DLS technology in action, we knew we found our solution. The part quality and material properties are as close to injection molded as we have ever seen.”
About Carbon’s Disruptive TechnologyCarbon has introduced a revolutionary way to 3D Print plastic components called Digital Light Synthesis, or DLS. It combines their proprietary continuous printing technology with programmable liquid resins to create parts with the same strength and surface finish of injection molded parts. The part creation is fast because it is a continuous process, whereas most 3D Printing machines build up one layer at a time with pauses in-between. This continuous process is not only fast, but it also avoids the stair-steps created with layered methods. This results in textured surfaces and a surface finish that no other process can approach. https://youtu.be/23at9QglAm8 Programmable materials are the other technology that enables production quality parts. This unique approach joins two liquid resins as the build material; one that hardens with light and the other with heat. The 3D Printer creates the desired geometry of the part by using light to shape the first material. Then a second step uses an oven to harden the heat activated resin, resulting in engineering-grade mechanical properties. Moreover, since the strength comes from a heat cured resin, the properties are the same in every direction. Most 3D Printed parts that use a layered approach are weaker in the build direction. The other significant advantage of including heat activated resins is that they offer a much broader material selection than light activated resins.
PADT’s On-Demand Manufacturing ServiceIn the past, when PADT’s customers needed parts manufactured with production quality, surface finish, and strength we had to use soft tooling or low-volume injection molding. Both are expensive and take time to make tools. 3D printing is leveraged to make those tools faster, but it still takes time and labor. Production manufacturing could benefit from going directly from a computer model to a finished part, as we do with prototyping. When we first saw an early Carbon sample part we knew that this was a technology we needed to watch. As the technology matured further, it became obvious that this was the process PADT was looking for – this was the type of end-use part our customers were requesting. Then, when the Production Partner program was introduced, we knew we needed to take part. Our On-Demand Manufacturing service will be built around the Carbon Digital Light Synthesis process. Initially, we will use three Carbon M2 systems, a cleaning station, and a curing oven. This will be placed in the middle of our existing advanced manufacturing facility, allowing us to add machining, hand finishing, painting, and other post-processing steps into each production process as needed. What sets PADT’s offering apart from other providers of production manufacturing with 3D Printing is that we also provide full product development, simulation, and part scanning services to help customers make sure their designs are correct. Before parts are made, we can use our simulation and design knowledge to make sure everything is correct before production begins. And when the parts are completed, we can use our advanced scanning to inspect and our product development testing to verify performance. By adapting our proven quality to this new technology, we can ensure that every step is done correctly and traceability exists.
Next StepsYou do not have to wait till our production line is up and running. We can start working with customers now on getting their parts ready for manufacturing with Carbon’s breakthrough Digital Light Synthesis. Our experienced staff can evaluate your components and find the best fit, recommend design changes, and work with Carbon to produce samples. And when our line is up, you can hit the ground running and obtain your parts on-demand, when you need them.
- Download the On-Demand Manufacturing brochure
- View the official press release announcing the partnership
- Visit the Carbon website