3D printing is just a hobby...
Additive Manufacturing or 3D printing is a manufacturing method that companies such as Toyota, Ford, NASA, Boeing, and countless others have adopted in the line of production. Aeronautical companies are very fond of this technology because of the capacity to produce much lighter parts while preserving their physical and mechanical capacities.
It is true that 3D printing is a very interesting hobby and has arisen from the greatly reduced cost of entry-level printers. It should be noted that there is a very big difference in the quality of the produced objects between hobby printers and the ones Invakor Technologies uses.
The concept of 3D printing was developed to implement manufacturing methods that save both designing times during development and prototyping, material cost, and more flexibility in production. By using 3D printing as a method of fabrication, we can achieve geometrical shapes that would simply be too costly to produce or even impossible using other methods. Universities all over the world acquire this technology from thermoplastic to metal printing capacity. That says a lot about this promising and relatively new technology. The technology has matured enough for the universities to teach young and experienced engineers about it. This also means that the use of additive manufacturing methods and technology is becoming the norm in the manufacturing industry. Additive manufacturing is the method that paves the way to the future.
Additive Manufacturing is too Expensive and Slow...
Not if the parts are designed properly. A part that will be produced using additive manufacturing must be designed accordingly.
3D printing allows us to use less material and to apply the material in the most efficient way possible. With additive manufacturing, it is possible to control how the inside of a part is made and can be reinforced by designing structural features inside a part and control the quantity of infill of the material. Post-production modifications can be eliminated in many objects, thus reducing overall manufacturing time.
Every method of fabrication has its purpose, Every method has it’s benefits and can be profitable in its own class. Additive Manufacturing is no different. When a part is designed, its method of fabrication must be taken into consideration. A part that is produced by a CNC machine, for example, must be designed so that the tools used by the machine can accomplish the work in the most effective way possible. It goes the same for a part produced with additive manufacturing.
Additive Manufacturing makes it possible to use less material and yet obtain the same physical and mechanical capacities a full part would. Being able to control the design of a part as such also reduces the production time and cost. It is also important to acknowledge that additive manufacturing is a low capacity production method. However, the technology is continuously undergoing development and its limits pass new boundaries every day.