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Feb 21 2022 09:53

What Are The Pros And Cons Of 3d Printing?

Pros Of 3D Printing
This production process offers many
advantages when compared to traditional manufacturing methods. These
advantages include those related to design, time, and cost, amongst
Flexible Design
3D printing allows for the design
and print of more complex concepts than manufacturing techniques that
are traditional. More traditional processes have limitations in design
and design that do not apply anymore with the use of 3D printing.
Rapid Prototyping
printing can manufacture parts in just a few hours, speeding your
prototyping processes. This allows every step to be completed more
quickly. When compared to manufacturing models, 3D printing is
inexpensive and faster to create components since the component is
completed in hours, allowing every change to design to be done in a
faster rate.
Print on Demand
Print on demand is a further
advantage as it doesn't need large amounts of space to stock the
inventory, in contrast to conventional manufacturing methods. This can
save space and money because there's no reason to print in bulk unless
The 3D design files are all saved in a library because they
are printed using a 3D model as either STL or CAD files so they can be
located and printed when required. Edits to designs are made at very low
costs by editing individual files , without wastage of out of date
inventory or the need to purchase tools.
Strong and Lightweight Parts
Selective Laser Melting SML
main 3D printing material used is plastic, however certain metals can
be used in 3D printing. However, plastics offer advantages because they
weigh less than metal counterparts. This is particularly relevant in
fields like aerospace and automotive where weight-saving is a concern
and could improve fuel efficiency.
Additionally, parts can be created
from tailored materials that offer specific characteristics like heat
resistance, higher strength and water resistance.
Fast Production and Design
on the part's layout and complexity, 3D printing can print parts in a
matter of days, and is quicker than machined or moulded parts. It is not
only the manufacturing process that could save time by using 3D
printing but the design process itself can be very quick by creating STL
or CAD files ready for printing.
Minimising Waste
manufacturing of components only require the material needed for the
component itself, and there is minimal or no waste when compared to
other methods which are cut from large chunks of non-recyclable
materials. This not only helps save on resources but it also reduces the
price of the material used.
As a
single-step manufacturing process, 3D printing saves time and therefore
costs associated with the use of various machines for manufacture. 3D
printers can also be installed and left to perform the task, which means
that there is no need to have operators present for the duration of the
process. Like we said, this manufacturing process can help reduce the
cost of materials because it is only using the amount of materials
needed to make the component itself which means there is no or little
waste. While 3D printing equipment can be costly to purchase however,
you could also avoid this cost by outsourcing your job to a 3D printing
service company.
The 3D printing technology
is becoming more readily available with more local service providers
providing outsourcing services to manufacture work. This helps save time
and doesn't require expensive transport costs in comparison to
conventional manufacturing methods that are produced in nations like
Environmentally Friendly
Because this technology
cuts down on the amount of waste material used this process is
inherently ecologically friendly. However the environmental benefits are
extended when you consider factors such as improved fuel efficiency due
to the use of lightweight 3D printed components.
Advanced Healthcare
printing is being used in the medical field to in saving lives, by
printing the organs of the human body, such as kidneys, livers and the
heart. Further advances and uses are being developed for the medical
sector, bringing some of the biggest advances from using the technology.
Cons of 3D printing?
to any other process , there are drawbacks to 3D printing technology
which should be considered prior to making a decision to employ this
Limited Materials
Although 3D Printing can create
items using a range of metals and plastics, the available selection of
raw materials isn't extensive. This is because some plastics and metals
are temperature-controlled enough to allow 3D printing. Additionally,
many printed materials can't be reused and only a few are food safe.
Restricted Size of Build
printers currently have small print chambers which restrict the size of
parts they can print. Anything larger must be printed as separate parts
and joined together after production. This could increase the cost and
lead to longer wait times for larger parts because the printer will need
to print more parts prior to manual labor is employed to join the
Post Processing
While large components require
post-processing as described in the previous paragraph, most 3D printed
parts need some sort of cleaning to get rid of support material from the
print and smooth the surface to achieve the required surface finish.
Post-processing methods include waterjetting, sanding, a wash and soak
chemical, heat or air drying, assembly and many more. The amount of post
processing needed is determined by factors such as how large the piece
being produced, the planned use and the kind of 3D printing technology
used for production. So, while 3D printing allows for the quick
production of parts the speed of production can be slowed by
Large Volumes
3D printing is a static
expense, in contrast to more traditional methods like injection
moulding. Injection moulding is a method where large quantities can be
economically feasible to manufacture. Although the initial cost for 3D
printing may be lower than other methods of manufacturing however, once
it is scaled to make large numbers for mass production, its price per
unit is not as diminish as much as injection moulding.
Part Structure
you use 3D printing (also known as Additive Manufacturing) components
are produced layer-by-layer. Even though these layers bond together it
is also possible for them to be smashed under certain stress or
orientations. This issue is particularly significant when producing
items using fused deposition modeling (FDM) in comparison to multijet
and polyjet components also generally tend to be less fragile. In
certain situations, it could be better to employ injection moulding
since it produces homogenous pieces that don't separate and break.
The reduction in manufacturing jobs
of the drawbacks that come with 3D technology could be the potential
decrease in the amount of human labor, as the majority of production is
automated and handled by printers. However, many third world countries
rely on low skill jobs to run their economies This technology may make
manufacturing jobs more at risk , as it eliminates the need to export
Design Inaccuracies
Another problem that may
arise from 3D printing is directly related to the type of machine or
process utilized, with some printers having less tolerances. This means
that the final components may differ from the original design. This is a
problem that can be corrected after processing, but it is important to
consider that this could further increase the time and cost of
Copyright Issues
As 3D printing is becoming
more widespread and affordable, it is more likely that people will
create fake and counterfeit items and it's virtually impossible to tell
the difference. This raises obvious concerns about copyright as well as
for quality control.
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