With the relentless growth of 3D printing across a whole range of sectors globally, many organisation are asking themselves the question “how can 3D printing benefit my business and what 3D printer should I choose?”
While benefits such as reduced costs, increased efficiencies and faster product development are well established, the process of choosing the right printer for a particular printer is equally important.
Here we take a look at the 3D printers that continue to make headlines for all the right reasons.
Markforfed are one of the leading international manufacturers of 3D printers, offering end-to-end 3D printing systems that rival traditional manufacturing processes both in speed and cost, while expanding the applications for additive manufacturing with purpose-built industrial technologies and a wide range of manufacturing-ready materials.
Markforged is a manufacturer of industrial 3D printers, print systems, and software, as well as an innovator in the technologies and materials that continue to define this emerging industry.
Markforged Mark 2
The flagship Markforged Mark 2 can print composite parts as strong as aluminium right on your desktop, combining a unique continuous carbon fibre reinforcement with workhorse reliability for the strongest, most versatile parts.
As an industrial 3D printer in a desktop form factor, the Mark Two delivers high-performance parts straight off the print bed. By reinforcing your parts with composite fibre while 3D printing them, The Mark Two achieves unparalleled strength, stiffness and durability in its printed parts.
In addition to printing Onyx, the Mark Two industrial grade 3D printer uses materials that no other 3D desktop printer can, like Carbon Fibre, Fiberglass and Kevlar.
The Markforged X7 is an exceptionally strong, supremely stiff, ultra-lightweight, and incredibly versatile 3D printer.
Continuous carbon fibre parts also stand up to the toughest applications. Stronger than 6061 aluminium and 40% lighter, these parts are perfect for manufacturing equipment, jaws, tooling, and end-use parts.
Parts printed with Onyx and reinforced with carbon fibre filament, fiberglass, or Kevlar® are work-capable and ready the same day for a fraction of the cost of traditional 6061 aluminium.
Markforged Metal X
Unlike the more typical DMLS printers that use a powder bed and a laser, the Markforged Metal X makes use of a proprietary technology known as ADAM (Atomic Diffusion Additive Manufacture) which works by imbedding the metal powder in a polymer & wax matrix.
The material is then layered down in a process similar to that of FFF (Fused Filament Fabrication) processes. The Markforged Metal X has two nozzles, one where the metal, polymer and wax matrix comes from and another that deposits a temporary ceramic-based material to allow for easy removal of supports.
3D Systems are another internationally recognised brand and have grown into a global 3D solutions company focused on connecting customers with their expertise and digital manufacturing workflow.
From digitisation, design and simulation through manufacturing, inspection and management, 3D Systems portfolio of technologies provides a seamless, customisable workflow designed to optimise products and processes.
3D Systems Figure 4
With a compact and easy-to-use design, the Figure 4 Standalone delivers industrial-grade durability at an affordable price and low total cost of operations.
Quick and easy material changeover allows for functional prototyping and production applications diversity with the same printer. Featuring a manual material feed, it is augmented with separate post-processing units available.
Achieve same-day functional prototyping and low volume production with ultra-high speeds, the Figure 4 Standalone offers quality, accuracy and Six Sigma repeatability (Cpk > 2) with industrial-grade durability, service and support.
3D Systems DMP Flex 100
The smallest of the DMP line, the new DMP Flex 100 is designed as the entry point to 3D printed metal manufacturing of small, complex fine detail metal parts at high quality using Direct Metal Printing (DMP).
DMP Flex 100 solution features a build volume of 100 x 100 x 80 mm (3.94 x 3.94 x 3.15 in), a 100W laser, 3DXpert™ all-in-one software solution for metal additive manufacturing and a portfolio of qualified LaserForm® metal powders.
The DMP Flex 100 offers the flexibility of manual material loading and an optional, atmospheric controlled, external recycling station.
3D Systems DMP Flex 350
The DMP Flex 350 high-performance metal additive manufacturing system is a heavy duty alternative to traditional metal manufacturing processes.
With a build volume of 275 x 275 x 420 mm (10.82 x 10.82 x 16.54 in) it offers reduced waste, greater speeds for production, short set up times and very dense metal parts with excellent mechanical properties.
A high throughput, high repeatability metal 3D printer that generates high quality parts from the most challenging alloys. The DMP Flex 350 is an integrated software, material and printer solution with expert application support.
3D Systems ProX 800
The state-of-the-art ProX™ 800 uses SLA®, the most advanced plastic part 3D printing technology for printing the highest precision, highest resolution, lowest cost and highest throughput across the widest range of applications for prototyping, end-use part manufacturing and rapid tooling production.
The ProX 800 produces precise plastic parts that rival CNC and injection moulded parts, with the freedom of complexity and speed advantages of 3D printing. With productivity, accuracy and surface quality of this level, users can produce low to medium run parts at a lower per unit cost and build large, highly detailed pieces faster.
3D Systems ProJet MJP 2500/2500 Plus
Accessing high fidelity, functional plastic or elastomeric prototypes has never been faster or easier, with up to 3x higher 3D printing speeds than similar class printers and finished part delivery up to 4x faster with 3D Systems MJP EasyClean System.
The ProJet® MJP 2500 Series is the latest in 3D Systems’ MultiJet Printing (MJP) line of 3D printers, engineered to combine professional grade 3D printing capabilities with an affordable price, compact footprint and easy part processing.
Print precision rigid and elastomeric parts with true-to-CAD accuracy, superior surface finish and high quality edge fidelity for true functional testing. The ProJet MJP 2500 and 2500 Plus are compatible with robust and versatile VisiJet® M2R and M2G materials in rigid white, rigid black and new VisiJet ProFlex M2G-DUR engineering clear.
3D Systems ProJet 7000 HD
The ProJet 7000 uses stereolithography technology to create accurate and perfectly formed 3D printed parts and prototypes. It’s available in 3 models, SD, HD and MP, with the largest build platform delivering 380 x 380 x 250 mm of available build space.
Used by aerospace, automotive, heavy equipment, consumer product and industrial designers, with the ProJet 7000 MP being particularly popular with medical device manufacturers, these systems offer a wide range of material choices.
Materials closely match that of their traditional alternatives with ABS-like properties with the VisiJet SL Black, resistance to temperatures as high as 130oC with the VisiJet SL HiTemp, and materials that allow direct creation of casting patterns for foundries and investment casting facilities.
3D Technology Ltd. LF3DT
3D Technology Ltd. has committed to the development of a proprietary line of 3D printers, including it’s latest LF3DT model, continuing to push the boundaries in terms of 3D printer automation, speed and efficiencies.
Chief among the primary characteristics of the new LF3DT is its usability, with the printer targeting both novice and expert 3D printers, made possible by a number of innovative user friendly features.
Not only is the printer easy to use, it can be deployed in a wide range of applications. In addition to the usability and versatility of the LF3DT, additional features include faster print speeds, 24/7 material handling, reduced waste and more efficient air filtration.