3D Printing in Manufacturing industry

3D Printing is revolutionizing the way products are manufactured. The impact of 3D printing resonates across multiple departments of manufacturing. Experts state that 3D printing will be the main contributing factor for the start of 4th Industrial revolution. The impact of  3D printing has made a impact on Tooling, Manufacturing and Robotics and has multiple benefits which we will discuss below

 

 

3D Printing can help various industries address their spare parts issues, such as old parts, obsolete parts, low volume parts, long-tail performance, etc. 3D Printing can help create significant value for your enterprise.

Why 3D Printing Spare Parts?

Currently, spare parts manufacturers cannot meet their customers’ needs; 47% of customers have looked into 3D Printing their parts. In the next five years, 85% of spare parts suppliers will incorporate 3D Printing into their business.

What are the Challenges in the Spare Parts Industry?

Inventory Storage of Spare Parts

Suppliers across the globe face a lot of difficulties in maintaining and store spare part inventory. The profit margins are positively affected due to the high operational costs needed to manage the inventory.

High Costs of Spare Parts

Buying spare parts also causes a lot of money to the customer since the production and operational costs are high.

Higher Turnaround Time

Sometimes, the spare parts’ designs are so intricate that local manufacturers depend on foreign manufacturers because the operational process is significantly affected, and the parts are not produced or delivered on time.

Wastage of Materials

We are well aware that traditional spare part manufacturing techniques like casting, milling cause a lot of material wastage. Only 30-60% of the material is used to design and produce, and the rest of the 70-40% block is disposed of. But 3D Printing reduces wastage by 95%, allowing the companies to take up a big project. It helps them save up on the production costs and provide cost-friendly parts.

We all know that there could be multiple industry necessities for 3D Printing. With customized tooling variants, 3D Printing can be highly useful to your enterprise. Robotics can’t be away from this; that is why the robotics industry and additive manufacturing goes hand in hand.

Additive production techniques like 3D Printing facilitate prototyping, tooling, manufacturing, which lowers costs and time to market and helps robotics engineers accomplish their targets & goals. 3D Printing can help you customize designs for robotic applications according to your requirements and optimize the design. Throughout a swarm of markets, additive processing has unique benefits.

 

Advantages of 3D Printing in the Robotics Industry:

1. Saves Time – 3D Printing makes it possible to produce prototypes much faster than traditional manufacturing techniques, like CNC.

2. Saves Money – Quick time results in less money expenditure, and a perfect design gives the less sunk cost to the company instead of wasting money in trial and error

3. Unimaginable Prototypes – Highly detailed, accurate to micro levels, and smooth scale models printed by 3D printing technology is often used to showcase design ideas. These models also help in situations where CAD models are not sufficient for identifying design issues.

4. Ergonomic Design – Ergonomics aims to make the design of the packaging with human limitations. It is a hands-down winner. 3D Printing allows you to apply ergonomic principles to packaging design.

5. Design that Sells – New advancements in 3D printing technology allow companies to work faster, create more effective prototypes, and test packaging designs that grab consumers’ interest and establish brand identity.

6. Mass Customization – 3D printing technology will enable faster manufacturing in a quicker time and mass customization at a moment’s notice

7. Tools Manufacturing – The production of tools and injection molds can also benefit from 3D Printing. As per EY, thirty-nine percent of consumer products companies sees the value of 3D-printed tools in enhancing traditional manufacturing,

8. Sustainability – 3D Printing can significantly reduce material waste, thereby making the manufacturing process more sustainable.

Application of 3D Printing in Robotics Industry:

InMoov:

3D printing has opened doors for newer, lighter, stronger, safer and more robustly designed products. While original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and suppliers primarily use Additive manufacturing for rapid prototyping, the technical curve of additive manufacturing makes a strong case for its use in product innovation and direct manufacturing in the future.

Wire Harnessing

3D Printed Wire Harness

As per numerous specialists, 3D printing guarantees to change the manner in which various items are planned and mass-produced. In addition to other things, the technology can be utilized to create connectors, terminals and other wiring harness components. Furthermore, some time or another not very far off, 3D-printed parts may even take out the requirement for customary wire and link gatherings. To speed product testing with usable parts, wiring harness engineers are eager for an alternative process to plastic injection molding. They’re also interested in low-volume applications that allow them to easily produce one-off designs or custom components.

 

 

Jigs and Fixtures

Grips: The part of an automation process that is in contact with the workpiece typically used to exchange or orientate the part. These are often custom-made to match a parts geometry.

Jigs: Holds the workpiece tight and furthermore directs the cutting device (e.g. a drill jig used for guiding the drill tool into the right spot). Jigs are typically not attached to the machine and can be easily manipulated to align with the cutting instrument. Precision of part does not rely upon the operator. Jigs are made out of tough materials as they must guide a tool to a particular location.

3D Printed Assembly Fixture
3D Printed Assembly Fixture

 

Fixtures: Locates, holds and supports the work-piece securely as machining or assembly happens. Machining fixtures are generally anchored to the machine to withstand the large machining forces the part is subjected to. 

Fracktal can not only help you discover such use cases on your factory floor and machine assembly process but also help set up an additive manufacturing ecosystem that is much needed for continuous innovation.

 

The Sweet Spot for Additive Manufacturing: Low Volume, High Value, Long Lead-Time Parts

Often, the sweet spot for additive manufacturing is in low-volume, high value, long lead-time parts. Why? 3D printing reduces lead times and allows you to avoid the high up-front costs of traditional manufacturing: supply chain, tooling, and setup.

On the cost side, 3D printing often eliminates tooling and setup costs associated with traditional manufacturing. These lowered fixed costs mean that production at low volumes becomes economically viable. The graph below shows visually why this happens:

The Impact
That Matters.

COST

90%

Reduction in cost

Time

95%

Reduction in Time

Supply Chain

ZERO

Inventory & warehousing

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3D Printing is set to revolutionaize the way several industries work, from Medicine to Space Exploration to Education. 
Learning and adopting 3D Prinring in your field may just be the Next Big Thing in your industry or workplace