3D printing rapid prototype is produced by printing layer by layer with agglutinative materials, like the powder of metal and the powder of plastic. The principle of 3D printing is nearly same with that of ordinary printing. Pour the liquid or powder raw material into the printer, by connecting with computer, the printer will process automatically according to the 3D data received. 3D printing can produce complex and highly precise prototype that the traditional method can never do.
3D printing rapid prototype needs no cutter, jigs and fixtures nor many operators. One operator can operate multiple printers. As long as the tray is big enough, multipleprototypes can be produces at one time, and the processing cycle will be shortened effectively. After transforming the CAD into the format of STL,3D printing rapid prototype can be started to print. Common processing methods include SLS, SLA and SLM. For same part, the cost of SLS and SLA is 70% of CNC machining. However, because SLM is the 3D printing of metal materials, the price is high.
3D printing rapid prototype can be used for soft plastic, and the tensile strength and tear resistance of prototype is passable. Different from traditional machining method, the hardness of3D printing rapid prototype cannot be changed freely. The hardness of the prototype is 50 to 60 degrees, with mediocre mechanical property and non-elasticity, so the prototype can only be used to engineering test. But the color of prototype can be adjusted freely.
Bordersun can provide the service of SLA and SLS, producing a series of plastic3D printing rapid prototype. Such prototypes are mainly used for engineering test or the verification of product’s research and development. SLS and SLS can produce complex prototype that CNC cannot. If it is a complex metal prototype, SLM 3D metal printing is recommended.
The principle of 3D printing SLS prototype is stacking. With computer-assisted design and fabrication, the solid powder will be made into 3D parts, and without the limitation of the size and structure. The whole process needs no tools or jigs. As long as the tray is big enough, one person can operate multiple printers, and print multiple parts each time, reducing the cycle time of prototype manufacturing.
3D printing SLA prototype uses liquid photosensitive resin, then undergoes laser curing by layering, and finally stacks up and forms the prototype. By burnishing, electroplating and spraying, the prototype will be done. The advantage is the smooth surface, and high precision, with tolerance between ±0.1mm.
During the process of 3D printing SLM prototype, the metal powder is melted by the heat of laser, and the prototype will be done after cooling and congealing. Equipped with 500 watts fiber optic, collimating system and high precision scanner, the precise facula and optical quality can be got. Therefore, 3D printing SLM prototype is preciser than SLS. The only difference is that the materials are titanium alloy, stainless steel, aluminum alloy, cobalt-chromium alloy or steel, so the price is higher.