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What is 3D Printing?

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The introduction of 3D printing has revolutionised the digital printing and imaging concept with its ability to print highly digital 3D objects blended with high degree of design, look and feel of a digital 3D image. 3D printing is thought to be a great innovation in the field of manufacturing that has overtaken the manual works predominantly at present.

3D printing is one of those technologies that made manual job with the objects follow the digital projection or image, not the vice versa. The translucent fluid reality of digital world would make your imagination conceptualize in a detailed 3 dimensional image and manufacturing is just to follow that image. This utterly digitized way of manufacturing is just another way to see how far our good old reality of objective world has changed. The objective world that we used to know and interact with just a few decades before has changed beyond recognition. It is a world where objects and their digital projections interplay and move into one another, imitate one another seamlessly without boundary and in the meantime we lose the erstwhile sense of solid sensory reality. 3D printing is just another innovation in the manufacturing technology where an object is manufactured meticulously following the design, look and feel of a digital 3D image of a product. Let us now have a look at the technical aspects of how 3D printing is done and what are the benefits of this great manufacturing technology.

How 3D printing is done?

To understand the basis of how 3D printing functions we must first of all have a look at the differences between a traditional process of manufacturing and the process of manufacturing involved in 3D printing. In the so called earlier manufacturing process a product used to be manufactured using a deductive or subtractive process that used to involve cutting or drilling of the material in various stages of manufacturing. Suppose for instance to shape a flat board in traditional process a large piece of the material would be processed gradually by cutting the parts or edges and again through another process of subtracting when giving final shape to the board. In this process there is normally a huge volume of wasted material or craps that are no longer ready to use. In contrast to this in 3D printing or additive manufacturing technology a product is built by adding gradually one layer upon another following the 3 dimensional image of the product. 3D printing is done in the designated machines which are called 3D printers. From Jewelry to footwear to medical equipments to industrial design to construction and engineering, 3D printing is the core manufacturing technology in many industries and as the 3D printers are increasingly becoming affordable it is being popular and slowly replacing traditional manufacturing in many industries and work units.

Benefits of 3D printing

If you try to look at the benefits of 3D printing you are likely to be overwhelmed by the sheer bulk of advantages that this superb manufacturing technology has to offer. Here are some of the most distinct benefits of 3D printing.

  1. No wastage of raw material
  2. Using a 3D printer means layer by layer it would use the raw material for making the product as it is a additive process and like subtractive old day's manufacturing there is no need to cut or drill the material to have a finished product. This naturally translates in better cost advantage.

  3. Other cost advantages
  4. With 3D printer you can manufacture end number of identically designed material and thus for a large production unit apart from avoiding wastage it also turns out in disciplined operation in quick time which is again a cost advantage.

  5. Saving production time through jet-quick manufacturing
  6. In 3D manufacturing you can expect to manufacture several units of a same product in just minutes or hours in large volume. There's nothing so valuable in time in modern business and manufacturing environment and this additive technology of production is just ready to do that.

  7. Expect a great quality when asked for module manufacturing
  8. Definitely to make a pastry or cake through a 3D printer cannot provide you great results compared to those made with the touch of human hand, but just imagine making a shoe sole or rubber board or a designed jewelry in bulk numbers, you would definitely get far better quality that would exactly be the prototype of the design that you have provided to it.

  9. Multi-functioning and multi-specialization
  10. This truly a great aspect of 3D printing endowed with huge benefit. If a machine can be fed different designs like a shoe or a fashionable scarf or a plastic baby doll and can be manufactured just following one after the other, what better can you expect than this? Yes, 3D printing can let you move seamlessly between manufacturing various products without seeking different specialized machines.

  11. Endless vistas of shapes and fusion of materials

There has always been a limit of shapes, structures and contours of the products in traditional manufacturing, but here in 3D printing there is none of them. Moreover you can make fusion of various materials and create previously unprecedented effects in the product. You can always enjoy the affair with your concepts to create new and newer designs with different feel and looks every day.

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Posted on: June 10, 2013

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