Bastech’s In-house Direct Metal Printing Expanded
Bastech announces the expansion of their in-house additive manufacturing capabilities with the addition of a Direct Metal production 3D printer, 3D System’s ProX 200™ Direct Metal Printer (DMP).
Whereas “3D printing” is commonly thought of as a primarily plastic process, Direct Metal Printing uses high-powered lasers and ultra-fine metal powder to build physical metal objects from a digital file that are 99.9% dense, chemically pure and as strong or stronger than their cast counterparts.
This proven technology is ideal for custom, complex and generally low-volume applications such as:
- High-performance tools
- End-material prototypes
- Efficient molds and inserts
- Custom dental prosthesis, bridges, copings and crowns
- Medical implants and prosthetics
- Testing fixtures
- Simplified assemblies
- Obsolete aircraft and automotive parts and much more.
Today, GE Aviation employs this very process to manufacture complex fuel nozzles for it’s LEAP engines (video below), over 40,000 a year. Medical groups and printing titanium jawbones (for humans and sea turtles), cranial and spinal implants and the U.S. Army is studying ways to use 3D printed metal in their future Iron Man suit for it’s elite forces. The applications are endless.
Bastech’s primary purposes for the ProX 200 are threefold:
- Printing customer’s parts, tools and, well whatever they design
- Develop more efficient production tools, cores and inserts for plastic injection molding
- Use as a demonstration unit for it’s 3D Equipment Sales Division
The ProX 200 supports materials including:
- Maraging 1.2709
- Stainless 17-4PH
The machine also touts:
- Accuracy compatible with EN ISO 2768 (fine) machining tolerances
- Repeatability of about 20 microns in all three axes
- Layer thickness – adjustable, min. 5 μm – max. 100 μm
- Minimum wall thickness -150 microns
Along with UDRI’s Fastlane, GE Aviation – Elano, Unision Industries and a $225,000 grant from Ohio Development Services Agency, Bastech is currently engaged in a program that focuses on designing and direct metal printing cores and inserts for plastic injection molding. These additive manufactured tools, because of their unique interior “conformal cooling” channels, significantly decrease production cycle times, increase molded part performance with less deformation and lessen the carbon footprint used to make the tool. Through the documentation of best practices, techniques and processes, this valuable will be made available to help accelerate the state’s manufacturers adoption of additive manufacturing.
Get a quote on 3D printing your file in metal, talk to someone about custom conformal cooling or contact us if you’re interested in finding out more about bringing 3D printing into your business, research facility or school.
More information on our 3D Printed Metals page including more materials.
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