Haddington Scales Up Robot Arms Production with 3D Printing

A multi-jointed robotic arm made with 3d printed components

3D Printed 7-Axis Robotic Arm

Haddington Dynamics, an engineering startup who develops and manufactures a 7-axis robotic arm for such customers as NASA, GoogleX and Toshiba, spent years trying laser cutters and inexpensive desktop printers to build a robot without success.

When they discovered Markforged 3D printing, it allowed them to achieve just what they were seeking — engineering-quality parts for their robots. They were so impressed that they built their business around 3D printing and created a print farm of carbon fiber printers to keep up with demand.

From end-use parts to custom end effectors, read on to see how they reduced part counts from 800 to less than 100 to save time and money.

The Breakdown:

The Challenge:

Robotic arms need to be cost-effective and stiff enough to maintain 50-micron precision in the arm’s movements.

The Solution:

A fleet of several Markforged printers allowed the team to develop durable custom gripper fingers for customers.

The Results:

Haddington Dynamics reduced part count from 800 to under 70 and can assemble Dexter robots within a day.


Video: Lean Machine Adopts a Design for Additive Approach to Solve Problems in the Shop

Lean Machine, Canadian-based metal fabrication company, specializes in custom machining primarily for the commercial transportation and mining sector.

It quickly became apparent that producing tooling out of heavy duty steel was not a scalable option for the company, so they turned to Markforged 3D printing solutions. Since adding this capability, they’ve printed sheet metal bending dies using non-marring carbon fiber material as well as metal grippers for their robotic arms just to name a few.

See how Lean Machine has used metal and carbon fiber 3D printing to transform its production: