3D Printing

3D Printing

What Is 3D Printing

Curious about 3D printing? Sure there’s lots of buzz about this technology, but what the heck does it do?! Hopefully this article will give you a better understanding about what 3D printing is, and what it can accomplish.

The Basics

3D Printing is the layer by layer creation of virtually anything! It is sometimes referred to as additive manufacturing, because layers of material are “added” on top of each other to form a final product. Machines known as 3D printers will use various materials to lay down layers of material, and in turn – 3D print certain models.

There are tons of materials to choose from with this manufacturing technology; many people use ABS plastics (think LEGO’s), metals, ceramics, translucent materials, and full color materials. There’s a material for pretty much whatever you want.

One of the powerful things about this technology, is that in some cases you can create virtually anything. Not all machines offer the capability to create incredibly intricate models, but many do. Due to various support materials, high levels of resolution, and access to tons of materials – 3D printing can create very intricate pieces that other forms of manufacturing cannot.

What Can 3D Printing Make?

What Can 3D Printing Make

Like I mentioned earlier, 3D printing can make pretty much anything depending on the printer being used. 3D printing is beginning to impact the medical world quite a bit for its ability to create a wide variety of custom prosthetic parts out of bio-compatible materials. Read more here to see details about 3D printing applications in the medical world.

Engineers, concept development teams, and prototyping firms are taking advantages of this technology. When a product needs to be manufactured on a small scale (i.e just a few parts need to be made) 3D printing is great! If you look at your cell phone, a special mouse for your computer, a calculator, or whatever – 3D printing was very likely used in the prototyping process.

Also, like I mentioned earlier – 3D printing can do quite a bit where other forms of manufacturing cannot. To get a strong visualization of this, check out this article.

How Will It Effect You?

3D printing is gaining in momentum, and frankly – it’s probably already effected you somehow already. The products you use have likely been tested through 3D printing. If you work in some kind of engineering field, you’ll likely come across it. If you work in the medical field – you’ll be more likely to come across it as well. To get an idea on how 3D printing will change the world, and where it is currently changing – check out this article.

If you have any questions or want a more in depth explanation on some parts, please leave a comment and I’ll get back to you. Thanks for reading!