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Advantages of 3D Printing for Business
Most people aren’t aware of just what 3D printing can accomplish today, which is kind of odd considering all that it can do with such a wide array of materials.
3D printing can even be used to print out food and metal, which has all kinds of domestic and industrial implications that we are just starting to figure out.
Progress is so rampant that the question is becoming, what can’t we print? And this is an excellent attitude to have as it is inspiring all sorts of applications that we wouldn’t have dreamed before.
This technology can be used in so many exciting ways that we are starting to rethink the processes we use to develop and build the things that we want. This is a good thing as we are approaching innovation with a newfound sense of wonder.
You may have your doubts about where this technology fits in within the modern world, but one thing is for sure, what it is able to do is nothing short of impressive!
So, let’s look at what makes 3D printing unique and why we might want to bring it closer to our lives.
More Freedom in Terms of Design
The best way to go about beginning to understand why 3D printing is superior to other methods of construction is by looking at how it works, starting with the first step, which is designing the object you want to print.
CAD or Computer-Aided Design
The design in question is called a computer-aided design model or CAD model, and it can be manipulated in a number of different ways with different types of software.
You can change a number of aspects of what you wish to be printed out until it pleases you enough to be ready, or near ready enough, for realization. You can think of this process to be a bit like sculpture, where you take a block of material and shape it until it looks how you want it to, except, of course, at this stage, it’s all on computer.
As you can probably imagine, this offers a plethora of advantages over other types of construction methods as you don’t need to saw, nail, chop away or even sand to the get the shape and finish that you desire.
It may feel a bit hands-off, but there are a lot of positives to putting your trust in the programming of a computer and the mechanics of a printer that can put the material that you want, exactly where you want it.
Design for Manufacture
With a competent program at your disposal, you can choose the dimensions, scale, materials, and even a particular printing procedure that you would like to use.
This last one can be quite important if you’re making something with complex geometry, as you may need to design support structures that will ensure that in the process of printing certain parts won’t collapse under pressure.
As such, there are so many possibilities for complex design experiments, which is a good thing when you aspire to make things that are more elaborate and of better quality in terms of things like aesthetics, structural integrity, and overall effectiveness.
Aesthetics and Ergonomics
An excellent geometric design is all-important if you want something that has the attributes that you’re interested in. You can really specify precisely how you would like a print to look both inside and out, and this means that there can be a greater capacity for providing products that are more structurally sound than what has existed in the past.
Exceptional Accuracy in The Execution of a Design
Once you have your design, you can then focus on the actual printing procedure, which means choosing the type of 3D printer that you would like to use and the variety of materials that would best suit your needs.
This is very important as this will determine the ultimate finish of your design. There are different materials, models, and processes that yield different results depending on what you’re trying to make.
Jewelry-making, for example, demands a different finish than plastic toys do. If you would like to print something that has an appearance similar to that of wood, there are certain 3D printers that can accomplish this to a much greater degree than others.
Accuracy & Replication
The precision that this technology is able to accomplish is a customizer’s dream come true, and it is because of this that it is being used in all kinds of businesses where clientele would like one-of-a-kind products that no one else has.
What’s more, even replicas of existing pieces will be easier to produce than ever before. For instance, a number of museums have been putting 3D scans of their collections online for anyone to access them. So, if you would like a replica of a dinosaur bone, you can do this easily with access to 3D printing facilities.
It isn’t too hard to imagine that in the near future, people who like the idea of printing out their own decorative pieces for their homes will find the prospect of having a 3D printer in their home absolutely irresistible and extremely timesaving.
It Helps Businesses Improve Their Practices
It’s also easy to see why it is an ideal way to work out prototype designs that may ultimately be tested in a number of comparable ways.
The kind of businesses that are adopting 3D printing technology varies greatly, especially those that deal in coming up with newer designs of their existing products. They see it as a fruitful investment that provides them with better results and a smoother workflow than what they were used to before.
With this in mind, it shouldn’t come as any surprise that a staggering 70% of manufacturers have incorporated 3D printing in some way or another. It is changing a lot of the way that we develop new products for the world to use, allowing the market to put forth more complex designs and not just the ones that meet the bare minimum requirements.
The sheer number of new products that are bound to hit the market as a direct result of 3D printing is hard to pin down, mainly as there is sure to be greater involvement from ordinary folks who have an idea and want to try their hand at entrepreneurship.
Think along the lines of Shark Tank, where individuals who have a good idea can save up to purchase their own 3D printer so that they may seem their products directly to consumers.
Everyone Can Benefit, and the Market Is Taking Notice
Within the 3D printer market, there has been an enormous surge in the competition that, in turn, is being directed at all types of demographics, for instance, food enthusiasts who like the idea of printing their meals to achieve preciseness and health.
This is to say not just businesses, but individuals are being targeted, which should come as no surprise as history is marked by all kinds of innovations that are marketed towards the general public after being developed in the shadows.
The microwave started out as a weapons research on behalf of the military but, when it was discovered that it could be applied towards foods, they redirected their interests.
The Future of 3D Printing
Ideas for the use of this technology are becoming quite plentiful, and as such, there are a number of reasons why 3D printing stands in a very intriguing position to improve our lives from a number of perspectives.
An important area that’s worth paying attention to in this regard is education. It is being integrated into schools at all levels as a resource that invites students to work their creative juices and really see how their ideas can come to life.
Without a doubt, 3D printing’s most significant advantage is its versatility. With 3D printers, you can count on precise results for so many purposes, and this is compounded by the variety of models that are continually coming out. To give you an idea of how far this technology can go, there are even large cement 3D printers that can make complete houses!
It works wonderfully to make quality results that you can count on, and everything from aviation components to art replication is fair game!
3D printing is one of those technological achievements that inspire all of us to deliver our very best into the world as well as take what we wish from it to incorporate it into both our personal and professional lives.
The advantages of 3D printing are so numerous and have the potential to improve so many areas of society that it is just a matter of time before a number of 3D printing brands become household names.
Just pondering the possibilities is an utter joy and one that is being shared by a lot of talented and smart people. At this point, what we’ve yet to see with this technology is a question of imagination more than technical aptitude.