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Using 3D Printed Parts for Production

June 21, 2024 2:00-2:50 PM


Manufacturing in qtys of 100s to 1000s as a small business is always a challenging balance of time and cost. Producing custom plastic parts used to be reserved for companies that could afford $10k-$30k in injection molding start-up costs, not to mention thousands of dollars for each revision and iteration. Fortunately, 3D printing has completely changed the landscape, making it possible for small businesses to manufacture their own custom plastic parts, and iterate quickly and cheaply.

The recent explosion of 3D printing farms has made this a valid and economical production manufacturing choice for many parts that are produced in batches of under 10,000. There are a myriad of processes with their own TLAs - FDM, SLA, SLS, MJF, and each involve different material choices, color options, tolerances, and design considerations. Should you print parts yourself or outsource the manufacturing, and how do you choose a supplier?

Carrie Sundra will talk about all of it in the context of designing, prototyping, and manufacturing parts using all of those technologies for our Glider Swift, which is a modern take on an old yarn unwinding tool.