Category: Jewelry

New Heights with 3D Systems’ SLA 3D Printing Technology

In 2013 Apple sold more than 170 million iPads® worldwide. With a reported 500 million iPhones® in use along with millions of Samsung® Galaxy phones and a variety of other mobile devices, it goes without saying this market is hot. Likewise, the ensuing demand for peripheral devices, such as headsets, is exploding.

Fujikon, an award-winning headphone manufacturer for over 30 years, is itself on the wild ride of the headset and speaker market for mobile devices. In a market that’s getting more competitive by the day, innovation is a must. The Hong Kong-based Fujikon is no exception, as they are constantly exploring better noise-cancelling functionality, wireless connectivity and sound quality as well as innovating more attractive products and enabling faster time-to-market. In order to survive, these components are all core demands for any major market player.

In 2011 Fujikon had to take the next step forward; they realized that their 200-strong R&D team needed to adopt new practices and technologies in order to enable faster product development. 3D printing was at the top of the list. So in June of the same year, company executives asked a team to review, test and evaluate all the major 3D printing technologies.

parts-fujikon-webSLA printed parts for Fujikon on ProJet 7000Over 18 months, the team benchmarked multiple systems inside and out based on what they required: a sizeable build platform, precision, very smooth surface finish, and material properties (assuring that parts could be assembled, drilled and screwed without breaking).

Only one 3D printer matched all their specifications: the ProJet® 7000. With the help of reseller Shanghai Metang Novatech, Fujikon brought in the ProJet 7000, and as of May 2013 they had fully installed it, trained the staff and were off and running.

The ProJet 7000 is 3D Systems’ workhorse Stereolithography (SLA) 3D printer. It gives users the hallmark precision of SLA with a versatile build size of 380 x 380 x 250 mm. Its two laser sizes enable users to rapidly create parts while ensuring feature accuracy, smooth surface finish, and a choice of layer thickness. The material Fujikon tested, VisiJet® SL Flex, offered toughness for assembly testing, screwing and fit testing, while still having a perfect surface finish.

“As soon as we started, we could see and experience the stability of the ProJet 7000,” said Mr. Chunxiang Wu. “This was perfect die-less manufacturing: we produced accurate samples with arbitrary and complex geometry that we would not have considered before.”

The R&D teams were delighted with the fact that the ProJet 7000 was fast enough to print overnight, and it enabled them to test the product designs the next day.

“The ProJet 7000 instantly started to help our customers, our engineers,” said Mr. Wu. “We could think up a new idea, and within a day could evaluate the design, perform validation and verification of the parts and assemblies, conduct acoustic testing, review packaging design and reduce the risks associated with producing tooling for the new products. Before, the same process would have taken a longer time.”

With the ProJet 7000 entrenched as part of its everyday operation, Fujikon is seeing benefits across the board. Preliminary estimates indicate a first year savings of 5% in total production development time and at least 11% materials savings compared to the team’s old 3D printer. Most notably, 3D parts production is now an amazing 62% faster compared to Fujikon’s older methodologies.

“With the competitive market environment, and increasing manpower costs, we have to find ways to be better at what we do,” said Mr. Wu. “The ProJet 7000 is allowing us to meet demand and compete in the market. We complete product development effectively and efficiently, and we are excited to see how 3D printing from 3D Systems will improve our competitive edge as we go forward.”


MarkForged Tips & Tricks

MarkForged is excited to announce a new series of “Tips & Tricks” videos for the Mark One printer.

The video below demonstrates “Cleaning the Nozzles” on the Mark One and was produced by MarkForged’s Sr. Application Engineer, Dan Topjian.

 


Another Great 3D Printing “Case” Study from Our Partners at Markforged

Caddytown – 2 parts, a socket and power bit caddies – Created by Carl Calabria

 

The potential for 3D printing is limited only by your imagination.  Here is a great “case” study from our partners at MarkForged, innovators and manufacturers of 3D printers and systems. For questions about 3D printing or Markforged printers, contact Miller 3D.

3D printing caddy

 

Carl created caddytown in OnShape to house his ever-growing power-bit and socket collection. Both are printed in these pictures in nylon, without composite reinforcement. The nylon is actually great for this application because you can flex it slightly to pull out one of the bits. The nylon will bend slightly many, many times without cracking.

You could absolutely print this on a Mark One with a composite base, too. Eiger will add some fiber layers for you, or you could add some yourself. Adding a few fiber layers to the bottom could help the part print flat and add some stability, but this design works better using the compliance achieved with nylon – the bits fit snuggly and are easier to get out based on the way MarkForged’s nylon slightly flexes.

The socket caddy is also special for another reason. It’s specific to a Wera socket set that long ago parted ways with the socket holder. Carl was able to quickly model this holder perfectly suited to the size of these sockets.

Different socket sets may have different diameters than this tray. If you’d like to reuse it, the best bet is to scale the part to fit your sockets.

Carl submitted this part as a contestant in MarkForged’s internal “Part Of The Week Competition.” It was a close race, but Carl was first runner up. He lost to a shamelessly submitted customer part, that will be posted on the blog as well. You can also see this part on Thingiverse.

Specifications

Power-bit Caddy
Size 55mm x 46mm x 14mm
Estimated Print Time ~3h 48min
Nylon Cost ~$2
STL Download MarkForged_Bit_Caddy.stl ()

Wera Socket Caddy
Size 55mm x 46mm x 14mm
Estimated Print Time ~3h 48min
Nylon Cost ~$1.75