Last week I popped in on our customer Uni-Spray Systems Inc. to catch up with the owner and find out how his Stratasys Connex3 260 3D printer is impacting his business and found out that 3D printing saved a $20K mistake with a 3D printed injection mold prototype! Six months has elapsed since they purchased the 3D printer from us and I’m ecstatic to report that 3D printing is reducing costs and saving time in critical areas of their business.
Uni-Spray has some fantastic stories of how 3D printing has positively impacted their workflow. The other day the company quoted an injection mold tool to make a customized vent for their customer. The issue with the designed end part were the thin walls riddled throughout the component. Creating the steel tool was going to cost upwards of $20,000 and there was no guarantee the costly tool would yield a successful vent.
Testing a tool before cutting metal
With the ease of use and affordability of a 3D printed tool the company was able to print multiple iterations of the tool design overnight and made the part the following day. The 3D printed tool was nearly identical to the steel tool except for that it is made out of plastic via 3D printing. The plastic tool performs similarly to the steel tools as you can bolt it directly into the injection molded machine just like a steel tool as shown in the example below by Ross + Doell (http://www.rossdoell.com/):
The method of prototyping the tool via 3D printing proved to be extremely successful. The 3D printed tools cost less than $2,000 and the company avoided what would have turned out to be a failed part and broken tool costing Uni-Spray $20,000.
Having direct access to a 3D printer reduced the risk of this project and allowed Uni-Spray to win the customer’s bid for the project.
Get our 3D Printed Injection Mold Prototype Guide
To learn more about 3D printing injection molds please contact the Javelin 3D printing team to set up a personal consultation, or download the guide below.
This guide provides insight into the reasons why leading companies have adopted 3D printing for creating test injection molds. If you want to test your injection molds with significant time savings and reduce your cost by 40% – 70% then this guide is for YOU!