3D Printing


    Fisher Unitech Welcomes First Desktop Metal Studio System 3D Printer

    by Angelle Erickson on March 7, 2018

    Desktop Metal Studio System 3D Printer It's here! We're excited to announce that on March 6th, 2018 we welcomed our first Desktop Metal Studio System 3D Printer at our new Fisher Unitech office located at mHUB in Chicago, IL. We've been thrilled to be a Diamond partner with Desktop Metal, and the innovations metal 3D printing can bring to the table.

    The Desktop Metal Studio System is safe, cost-effective, simple to use, and unlike any other metal 3D printer currently on the market.

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      How to Keep Your 3D Printer in Tip-Top Shape

      by Alex Pauley on February 28, 2018

      3D Printer maintenanceMost companies have a 3D printing solution that they use on a daily basis. Performing proper 3D printer maintenance will help ensure that your printer keeps running smoothly and continues to kick out parts in the best possible form. During my experience as a 3D printing field technician, I’ve seen several cases that could have been avoided if proper upkeep and routine maintenance were established. In this blog, I’m going to go over some helpful tips and tricks for both PolyJet and FDM (Fused Deposition Modeling) 3D printers that will help you keep your projects on schedule, so you don’t fall behind.

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        ThunderChickens FIRST Robotics Team is Ready for 2018 Competition

        by Ryan Henigan on February 20, 2018

        ThunderChickensWith a new year comes a new FIRST Robotics season for the ThunderChickens. High school students in FIRST Robotics teams across the globe anxiously wait for this time of year. On January 6th, “For Inspiration and Recognition in Science and Technology” (FIRST) released this year's FIRST ROBOTICS COMPETITION (FRC) challenge.

        FIRST Robotics is an organization that has been around since its founding by Dean Kamen and Woodie Flowers in 1989. Their goal is to inspire young students to participate in Science and Engineering as if it were a sport. With traditional high school sports receiving so much attention, Dean and Woodie set out to create a sport for the mind that all of its participants could “go pro” in some day.

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          The Automotive Industry Continues to Drive Additive Manufacturing Solutions

          by Bryant Goudelock on February 15, 2018

          3D Printig soutions The automotive industry in the United States has seen many changes in production since its early beginnings in the late 1800’s. From Henry Ford’s Model T to the Big Three, factory floors have adapted to developments in production. In the beginning, designers and engineers used mockup drawings and general prototyping to demonstrate their ideas, but for the last two decades, the automotive industry has grown even more. With the use of an additive manufacturing and 3D printing solution, automotive manufacturers can create functional models, jigs, fixtures, and assembly aides along with other manufacturing tools to improve time to market.

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            New Developments in Additive Manufacturing: Aerospace

            by Lisa Hannon on January 31, 2018

            additive manufacturing in aerospaceIn August 2017, we wrote about the growing popularity of 3D printing in aerospace due to the cost, quality, and efficiency of 3D printed airplane parts and 3D printing materials. Since our last post, even more aerospace companies have adopted additive manufacturing, and new innovations seem to be emerging every day. Here are the most recent developments in additive manufacturing in aerospace, and what we can expect in the future.

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              Justifying a 3D Printer Investment for Rapid Prototyping

              by Angelle Erickson on January 24, 2018

              Justifying a 3D printerDo you think your company could benefit from 3D printing technologies? Are your design teams, engineers, and product managers on board but your accounting or finance department and management teams are still on the fence? If you could use a little help convincing the rest of your team to justify a large investment, you’re not alone. The advantages are significant, as 3D printing allows product development teams to easily, rapidly, and cost effectively produce models, prototypes, and patterns. Parts can be produced in hours or days rather than weeks.

              For many companies, prototyping is an expense, not an investment, for which there is a limited budget. With this mindset, increasing the volume of prototyping work means only that expenses increase. This translates to a negative impact on the bottom line that becomes hard to rationalize. To justify 3D printing based on printing more prototypes, the value of prototyping must be quantified in real, tangible ways. The following blog will help you define challenges you may face along with a whitepaper that provides case studies and all the steps you should take to win your case.

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                3D Printing News: Top 10 Stories of 2017

                by Angelle Erickson on January 8, 2018

                Top 10 3D Printing News of 2017-13D printing has continued to make an impact in many different areas. Whether it’s helping save lives in the medical field, driving innovation in the automotive industry, or bringing opportunities to new heights in the world of aerospace technologies, 3D printing news is making headlines for its endless possibilities.

                In 2017 here at Fisher Unitech, we covered a lot of 3D printing news, Stratasys came out with a new line of printers, materials, and new enhancements to GrabCAD Print, and we continued to explore 3D scanning and metal 3D printing. These are the top ten stories we posted in 2017. Have you read them all?

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                  Objet30 3D Printer Helps Nicomatic Speed Delivery: A Case Study

                  by Lisa Hannon on December 27, 2017

                  Stratasys Objet30 Helps Nicomatic Speed Delivery: A Case Study-1Companies like Nicomatic are applying the capabilities of 3D printing into their everyday workflow. With 3D printing readily available, prototypes and end-use parts can be made and analyzed faster than ever before. Learn how Nicomatic successfully increased their production of custom fixtures and prototypes with additive manufacturing solutions.

                  Nicomatic builds electrical connectors, cables and switches for the defense, avionics, medical, space and membrane switch industries as well as many others. Often Nicomatic’s customers order the connectors late in the product development process and in these cases fast delivery is essential to meeting the customer’s product launch date.

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                    Fisher Unitech Celebrates the Fourth Revolution Awards in Chicago

                    by Christa Prokos on December 21, 2017

                    Fisher Unitech attends Fourth Revolution Awards On October 18th, the inaugural Fourth Revolution Awards hosted by manufacturing innovation centers mHUB, UI LABS and IMEC took place in Chicago, Illinois honoring talent and achievements in the region’s manufacturing community.

                    Product development experts from Fisher Unitech were there to celebrate along with other technology enthusiasts and visionaries in the greater Chicago manufacturing community. Keep reading to learn more about this intelligence and technology driven event and more about the mHUB community.

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                      Everything You Need to Know About Manufacturing: 20 Manufacturing Statistics

                      by Lisa Hannon on December 20, 2017

                      Manufacturing Statistics Manufacturers big and small play an important role in the U.S. economy; according to the United States Census Bureau, manufacturers are the nation’s fourth-largest employer and ship trillions of dollars in goods every year. Whether it’s a large auto plant churning out cars or an establishment with fewer than 50 employees, manufacturers are critical to the country’s global success. Yet many people have misconceptions about the manufacturing industry -- that jobs are undesirable and low-paying, or that the United States is rapidly losing ground to China.

                      In reality, the United States’ manufacturers are still going strong and offer a wide range of well-paying jobs. Here are 20 manufacturing statistics and facts you should know.

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                        Create the Future with New GrabCAD Voxel Print

                        by Angelle Erickson on December 8, 2017

                        Stratasys GrabCAD Voxel Print The power of additive technology is changing the way designers imagine and create their designs. Encountering roadblocks due to lack of technology is a thing of the past especially for researchers involved in FAD (fabrication aided design). The new groundbreaking capabilities of GrabCAD Voxel Print allows designers to design and fabricate from the bottom up using voxels. What is a voxel? A voxel is a volumetric, or three dimensional pixel which allows for full control of the material or properties being used in a design.

                        The following blog was created and provided by Stratasys and provides a detailed look into the endless capabilities of GrabCAD Voxel Print.

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                          Deduct Your Software and Equipment Purchases with IRS Section 179

                          by Stacey Clement on November 16, 2017

                          IRS Section 179 deductionThe end of the year is near! Thanksgiving is around the corner, and we have 35 days until Christmas. Did you know time is also running out to take advantage of the IRS Section 179 and receive your equipment or software by the end of the year? Now is the time to buy the tools your business needs for a jump start on the new year.

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                            New VeroFlex 3D Printing Material Raises the Bar in Eyewear

                            by Angelle Erickson on November 10, 2017

                            New-VeroFlex-3D-Printing-Material-Raises-the-Bar-in-Eyewear-1The eyewear industry requires a high production rate in order to meet the demands of fashion trends, season changes, and the pure number of competitors currently in the marketplace. However, among those demands are the consumers who continuously search for the latest and greatest products and fashions available.

                            So how are eyewear companies going to meet these demands while also staying ahead of their competition?  Stratasys, the leading provider of Additive Manufacturing solutions, has the answer with their PolyJet VeroFlex 3D printing material that can drastically cut production time.

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                              How to use GrabCAD Print to Make a Multi-Colored Nameplate

                              by Dan Erickson on November 3, 2017

                              This is the second part in a two part blog series, where in the first post I designed a simple nameplate using SOLIDWORKS. If you haven't read it yet, you can view it here. In this blog post, I'll prepare the model for printing using GrabCAD Print, the latest 3D Print-Preparation (aka “slicing”) software from Stratasys, and print the model on a Stratasys F370 3D printer.

                              One of the design goals outlined in the last article is that the nameplate be attractive and easy to read. I'm happy with the overall design of the part, but I'd like it to have plenty of contrast to make the text easy to read. I can do that by printing the part in two colors. With Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) technology, a color change requires a material change. So I'll start the print with one color, pause the build at a certain layer and switch materials, then resume the print to complete the part with the second color. I'll need to keep this in mind while orienting the part. Let’s get started.

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                                Medical 3D Printing Saves Lives and Helps Surgeons Reduce Complications

                                by Bruce White on October 31, 2017

                                Medical-3D-Printing-Helps-Surgeons-Reduce-Complications-and-Save-Lives-1Medical 3D printing is well on its way to giving surgeons a way to practice before game time. For preoperative planning, it allows surgeons to see the specific anatomic problems of individual patients. In essence, medical 3D printing takes MRI scans, CAT scans, etc., which doctors often use, and turns them into 3D objects that are exact replicas of a patient’s anatomy - including their pathologies. These 3D models allow surgeons to plan and perform a preoperative surgery, with the exact instruments they will use days or weeks before the patient is on an Operating Room table.

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                                • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, SOLIDWORKS, CAD, 3D PRINTING TECH TIP

                                  Design a custom 3D Printed Nameplate Using SOLIDWORKS

                                  by Dan Erickson on October 20, 2017

                                  Design-a-custom-3D-Printed-Nameplate-Using-SOLIDWORKS-1Fisher Unitech has 32 Stratasys 3D Printers, distributed across the showrooms of our 17 offices. To showcase them, we try to keep them running as much as possible, building sample parts and benchmarks to support our sales team, backfill production when our customers’ machines are down, and printing parts as a service. But having access to 3D printers does have its perks, and we do find the time for “government jobs” now and again.

                                  If you attended one of our Design to Manufacturing events and filled out a survey, you’ve already received one. I designed those “FUdgit” spinners earlier this year and we’ve been churning them out every spare chance we’ve had since then. But that’s the subject of a different blog article. Today I’ll focus on nameplates.

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                                  • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, SOLIDWORKS, FISHER UNITECH NEWS

                                    Meet our Experts: Dan Erickson - 3D Printing Application Engineer

                                    by Angelle Erickson on October 12, 2017

                                    Meet our expert, and member of our 3D Printing team, Dan Erickson who is based out of our Headquarters in Pleasant Ridge, Michigan. Dan started at Fisher Unitech in 2011 as a SOLIDWORKS Technical Support Engineer. After gaining more and more knowledge and interest in additive manufacturing and the power and capabilities of 3D printing, Dan joined our 3D printing team in 2015 as an Application Engineer.

                                    Keep reading to learn more about Dan, his role in supporting the sales and marketing teams, and his passion for transformative technology.

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                                    • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, STRATASYS

                                      3D Printing and the Medical World

                                      by Lisa Hannon on October 11, 2017

                                      3D-Printing-and-the-Medical-World-1This week during NPR’s podcast, “BioTech Nation” host Dr. Moira Gunn and chief correspondent Dr. Daniel Kraft discussed how 3D printing is revolutionizing medicine and health today.

                                      Though 3D printers have been around for 30 years, the technology is now advancing exponentially, allowing users to explore new and profound possibilities for what can be imagined and created. This is especially true of the health industry. Thanks to major advancements in scanning technology and the ability to cost-effectively “blend” materials such as smart technologies or even biological cells, health is becoming not only more personalized but also democratic.

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                                      • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, SOLIDWORKS, CAD

                                        Celebrating National Manufacturing Day

                                        by Stacey Clement on October 4, 2017

                                        celebrating national manufacturing day-1Held on October 6, 2017, National Manufacturing Day celebrates the incredible achievements manufacturers have made to revolutionize, streamline, and challenge the modern world. And, it’s now more important than ever to pay attention.

                                        Unlike the Industrial Revolutions of the past, the Fourth Industrial Revolution is changing how we engage with the world across all industries, and it’s happening at unprecedented speeds. Manufacturers have made huge breakthroughs in our communicative capabilities and our ability to store and access data instantly from anywhere in the world.

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                                          Stratasys 3D Printing Materials: FDM Thermoplastics and PolyJet Materials

                                          by Lisa Hannon on September 27, 2017

                                          Stratasys-3D-Printing-Materials-FDM-Thermoplastics-and-PolyJet-Materials-13D printing is a rapidly evolving industry, and with it comes a slew of new and updated products: printers, software, and 3D printing materials. Perhaps two of the most well-known 3D printing materials are Stratasys’ FDM thermoplastics and PolyJet materials, with product lines that have expanded to meet the growing needs of engineers and designers. Although this growth is useful from an application standpoint, the sheer number of available material options can be overwhelming. The choice between FDM and PolyJet materials is based largely on application needs and the type of product you hope to create.

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                                          • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, SOLIDWORKS, CAD

                                            Delivery Drone Soars with SOLIDWORKS 2018 at Design to Manufacturing Events

                                            by Angelle Erickson on September 26, 2017

                                            Delivery-Drone-Soars-with-SOLIDWORKS-2018-at-Design-to-Manufacturing-Events-1What do SOLIDWORKS 2018, an RV manufacturer, and a delivery drone have in common? The Fisher Unitech SOLIDWORKS 2018 launch events! The theme of our events this year is Design to Manufacturing. We are so excited about SOLIDWORKS 2018. Using the new software along with additive manufacturing technologies in our portfolio, we have developed an end-to-end story using these technologies that we’ll share with you during the events.

                                            So plan to join us at a Design to Manufacturing event in a city near you. We’ll show you product demonstrations and real world examples of how you can apply SOLIDWORKS 2018 and additive manufacturing to your business to increase productivity, accelerate innovation, and get your great designs created. Keep reading to learn more about the events, how to find one near you, and a preview of our delivery drone.

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                                            • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, STRATASYS

                                              Office 3D Printing, Do You Have A Strategy?

                                              by Jason Bassi on September 20, 2017

                                              Office-3D-Printing-Do-You-Have-A-Strategy-1In this blog, I’ll take you through several thoughts to consider and why standardizing 3D printers in your business may not be such a bad idea.

                                              I recently have been noticing a trend in many companies that utilize 3D printing and it begs the question, should companies be thinking about standardizing their 3D printing? Companies do this with software, supplies and capital equipment, but yet I often see no real buying strategy for 3D printers. This is not just a small company or large company observation, but it ranges from companies who have a handful of people who need to access a 3D printer to large corporations who utilize 3D printing across many locations.

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                                              • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, STRATASYS, FISHER UNITECH NEWS

                                                Meet our Experts: Alex Pauley - Senior 3D Printing Field Technician

                                                by Angelle Erickson on September 7, 2017

                                                The people on the 3D printing team at Fisher Unitech have pretty amazing jobs. They get to help engineers and designers bring their virtual ideas to life on a regular basis. One of those team members is Alex Pauley, our Senior 3D Printing Field Technician based out of our office in Chicago, Illinois. Alex is certified on the entire line of Stratasys 3D printers and the lead installer. He also teaches advanced Insight software training courses.

                                                Keep reading to learn more about Alex, 3D printing, and his role in the customer experience.

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                                                • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, FISHER UNITECH NEWS

                                                  Meet our Experts: Greg Pancoast - 3D Printing Field Technician

                                                  by Angelle Erickson on August 31, 2017

                                                  If you’ve recently purchased a Stratasys 3D Printer from Fisher Unitech, and your company is located in the Mid-Atlantic area, (or our most recent expansion into New England), chances are you may have met Greg Pancoast. Greg is a 3D Printing Field Technician based out of our office in Horsham, Pennsylvania and has been with Fisher Unitech since 2017.

                                                  Keep reading to learn more about Greg and his expertise in the additive manufacturing industry.

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                                                  • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, SOLIDWORKS, CAD

                                                    Design to Manufacturing: Find an Event Near You

                                                    by Angelle Erickson on August 29, 2017

                                                    Design-to-Manufacturing-Event-Explores-SOLIDWORKS-2018-and-Additive-ManufacturingAre you familiar with SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD software but want to know more about how 3D printing could also improve your processes? Is your company already 3D printing prototypes and parts and is interested in learning more about SOLIDWORKS? Now is the time to see how it all comes together during our Design to Manufacturing events.

                                                    Keep reading to learn how you can experience the latest and greatest of SOLIDWORKS 2018 and see what’s new in additive manufacturing technologies.

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                                                    • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, SOLIDWORKS, CAD, EDUCATION AND RESEARCH

                                                      The ThunderChickens use SOLIDWORKS and 3D Printing to design their FIRST Robotics Team Robot

                                                      by Ryan Henigan on August 28, 2017

                                                      The-ThunderChickens-use-SOLIDWORKS-and-3D-Printing-to-Design-their-FIRST-Robotics-Team-Robot-1On July 14th and 15th First Robotics Indiana Robotics Invitational (IRI), took place just outside of Indianapolis, IN. This event is an off season competition of the best performing team in the FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC), from around the world. Each team was hand picked from those that applied for their outstanding robot performance during the official FRC season.

                                                      First Robotics is an organization dedicated to inspiring students to participate in STEM and STEAM related fields. FIRST offers competition levels for elementary through high school students, in the form of Junior FIRST Lego League (Jr. FLL), FIRST Lego League (FLL), FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC), and FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC). These are broken down into elementary, middle, and high school level competitions.

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                                                      • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, STRATASYS

                                                        Innovations in Medical 3D Printing: What You Need to Know

                                                        by Lisa Hannon on August 24, 2017

                                                        Innovations-in-Medical-3D-Printing-What-You-Need-to-Know-1The goal for those in the medical field is to improve patient outcomes, but how they get there is much more complicated. Doctors, researchers, and manufacturers are constantly evolving their work to keep pace with new technology and developments that can keep people healthier for  longer.

                                                        Medical 3D printing is one of many 3D printing innovations that has broken onto the scene and is changing the way those in the medical field approach their jobs. Whether it’s 3D printing a new prosthetic or making medical models more efficiently, medical 3D printing is changing the game for the medical field. Because the impact of technology is far-reaching, manufacturers, doctors, and researchers should all be aware of the applications of medical 3D printing so far, and where it can be headed in the future.

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                                                          Fisher Unitech Expands 3D Printing Footprint with a Partnership with Cimquest Inc.’s Stratasys-Focused Business

                                                          by Stacey Clement on August 23, 2017

                                                          Fisher-Unitech-Expands-3D-Printing-Footprint-with-a-Partnership-with-Cimquest-Incs-Stratasys-Focused-Business-1Fisher Unitech announced today the expansion of the company’s 3D printing business footprint with the manufacturing solutions segment of Cimquest Inc. which sells and services Stratasys equipment.

                                                          Fisher Unitech will now support customers with sales, services, and consulting for all Stratasys additive technology solutions, including the full portfolio of Stratasys 3D printers and advanced materials.

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                                                          • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, STRATASYS, 3D PRINTING TECH TIP

                                                            How to Insert Metal into a 3D Printed Part

                                                            by Nick Licari on August 18, 2017

                                                            3D Printing has transformed the manufacturing industry, allowing parts to be produced with unprecedented speed. FDM thermoplastics are durable and strong enough for most applications, and high performance materials expand those possibilities even further. Still, some designs require off-the-shelf or metal elements to do the job. But did you know that it’s possible to directly integrate these pieces into a 3D printed model? With a Stratasys production FDM printer and some tricks in Insight, it’s possible to build a 3D printed model around a metal insert.

                                                            This blog will demonstrate how I used Insight and a Stratasys Fortus 250 machine to create a simple knob on a bolt head.

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                                                            • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, STRATASYS, 3D PRINTING MATERIALS

                                                              3D Printing for Aerospace: 3D Printed Airplane Parts and More

                                                              by Lisa Hannon on August 17, 2017

                                                              3D-Printing-for-Aerospace-3D-Printed-Airplane-Parts-and-More-1The aerospace industry is one of the most powerful in the United States, and produces everything from airplanes to missiles and spacecraft. According to the International Trade Administration, the “U.S. aerospace industry contributed $147 billion in export sales to the U.S. economy,” including aerospace parts like jigs, fixtures, and production parts.

                                                              Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) who make these parts know there’s money to be made in aerospace, but the close regulation of products can make production complex and expensive. To counteract this, companies are adopting new techniques to streamline their processes and save on cost: they’re 3D printing the parts.

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                                                              • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, DESKTOP METAL, METAL 3D PRINTING

                                                                Metal 3D Printing Solutions: The Desktop Metal and Fisher Unitech Partnership

                                                                by Lisa Hannon on August 9, 2017

                                                                Metal-3D-Printing-Solutions-The-Desktop-Metal-and-Fisher-Unitech-Partnership-1Fisher Unitech has recently partnered with Desktop Metal, a creator of accessible metal 3D printing metal solutions. The partnership will make metal 3D printing metal solutions more readily available, as Fisher Unitech will be selling and servicing Desktop Metal 3D printing systems in a wide portion of the United States, including the Midwest, New England, and Mid-Atlantic regions. The availability and affordability of 3D printing technologies for metals gives new options to engineers and designers looking to prototype or produce products on a large scale.

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                                                                • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING TECH TIP

                                                                  How to Manage Part Curl in your FDM Parts

                                                                  by Adam Kneller on July 28, 2017

                                                                  Have you ever gone to pull your part out of your FDM 3D printer and come to find that a corner or a portion of the part has curled off of the build sheet? Well I know I have, and not only is it frustrating but it can also affect the function and/or appearance of the part.

                                                                  In today’s blog if you use the Insight program from Stratasys to process your STL files I want to walk you through a simple tool that helps to prevent that curling problem.

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                                                                  • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, STRATASYS

                                                                    Reducing the Cost and Lead Time of Form Tooling with Additive Manufacturing

                                                                    by Jerry Fireman on July 24, 2017

                                                                    reducing-the-cost-and-lead-time-of-form-tooling-with-additive-manufacturing-1Hydroforming is primarily used for low volume forming of sheet metal parts while thermoforming is mainly used for high volume forming of plastic sheets. The tooling used in these processes is typically produced by CNC machining of materials such as aluminum or wood which typically involves high costs and long lead times.

                                                                    Advances in additive manufacturing processes and materials now make it possible to create tooling for hydroforming and thermoforming in a fraction of the time and cost of traditional subtractive manufacturing methods. This blog will look at how several companies are using additive manufacturing to more efficiently make hydroforming and thermoforming tooling.

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                                                                    • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, STRATASYS, 3D PRINTING MATERIALS

                                                                      Agilus30 - 3D Printing Rubber - Everything You Need To Know

                                                                      by Lisa Hannon on July 18, 2017

                                                                      Agilus30-3D-Printing-Rubber-Everything-you-need-to-know-1Stratasys recently announced the release of a new family of 3D printing materials, Agilus30. This innovative, rubber-like material can be used to create flexible prototypes for a variety of applications. Here’s what you need to know about Agilus30 and Agilus30 Black.

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                                                                      • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, FUSED DEPOSITION MODELING (FDM), 3D PRINTING TECH TIP

                                                                        How Important is Orientation to your 3D Model?

                                                                        by Alex Pauley on July 14, 2017

                                                                        How-Important-is-Orientation-to-your-3D-ModelIn the world of 3D Printing, there are many decisions to make before printing your Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) models such as what material to use, what resolution to print at, and even what fill pattern to use. One of the most important aspects of modeling on an FDM machine is the orientation of your model.

                                                                        In this blog, I’ll cover five important factors that should be taken into account when picking the best orientation for your model along with aspects to consider when weighing your options.

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                                                                        • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, STRATASYS

                                                                          Getting to Market Faster with 3D Printed Injection, Blow and Silicone Mold Tooling

                                                                          by Jerry Fireman on July 12, 2017

                                                                          Getting-to-market-faster-with-3D-Printed-Injection-Blow-and-Silicone-Mold-Tooling-1Injection molding, blow molding and liquid silicone rubber (LSR) molding are three remarkably efficient manufacturing processes for producing large volumes of highly accurate and often very complex parts. One of the challenges of bringing products to market with these processes is that producing functional prototypes with the right mechanical properties requires expensive tools with long lead times.

                                                                          Additive manufacturing addresses this problem by producing tooling for these and other types of molding that can be used to make limited runs of prototypes or low volume production parts from the same material and with the same physical properties as the final production parts. Molds made by additive manufacturing make it possible to evaluate more design iterations in less time at a lower cost, enabling companies to get products to market faster and reduce engineering and prototyping expenses.

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                                                                          • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, STRATASYS

                                                                            Composite Tooling: Reducing Cost and Lead Time with Additive Manufacturing

                                                                            by Jerry Fireman on June 26, 2017

                                                                            Composite-Tooling-Reducing-Cost-and-Lead-time-with-Additive-Manufacturing-1One of the biggest challenges in producing fiber reinforced polymer (FRP) composite structures has long been the cost and lead time involved in making the metal or sacrificial tooling used to lay up the composite structures. Additive manufacturing has been used for a number of years to produce composite layup tooling but was limited by the lack of materials capable of withstanding the temperatures used for curing composite structures.

                                                                            The Stratasys new ULTEM 1010 resin can be used at process parameters in excess of 350 degrees Fahrenheit, making it possible to use printed layup tooling for producing most composite structures. Switching from conventional manufacturing methods to additive manufacturing can reduce composite tooling fabrication expense and lead time by up to 90% while providing additional design freedom and weight savings.

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                                                                            • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, STRATASYS

                                                                              GrabCAD Print: Stratasys' 3D Printing Software

                                                                              by Lisa Hannon on June 23, 2017

                                                                              GrabCAD-Print-Stratasys-Announces-3D-Printing-Software- 1Stratasys recently announced an innovative new 3D printing software called GrabCAD Print. This free, cloud-based solution is designed to streamline the 3D printing workflow, and is built for accessibility and speed. Stratasys users will want to check out this new solution as soon as possible -- GrabCAD Print is the only option for the Stratasys F123 series, and it will eventually support all Stratasys 3D printers. Here’s everything you need to know about GrabCAD Print.

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                                                                              • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, FISHER UNITECH NEWS, RAPID PROTOTYPING, DESKTOP METAL

                                                                                Fisher Unitech Partners with Desktop Metal to Provide Breakthrough Metal 3D Printing Solutions

                                                                                by Stacey Clement on June 15, 2017

                                                                                Fisher-Unitech-Partners-with-Desktop-Metal-to-Provide-Breakthrough-Metal-3D-Printing-Solutions-1Fisher Unitech announced today that it has partnered with Desktop Metal to add metal 3D printing solutions to its portfolio. Fisher Unitech will sell and service Desktop Metal 3D printing systems across Midwest, New England, and Mid-Atlantic geographies to provide affordable engineering and manufacturing 3D metal printing solutions covering the full product lifecycle — from prototyping to mass production.

                                                                                “We are excited to partner with Fisher Unitech,” says Desktop Metal’s CEO and Co-Founder Ric Fulop. “Fisher Unitech is an essential partner to help us fulfill our mission to make metal 3D printing more accessible, and we are pleased to have one of the largest sellers of 3D printers as part of our team.”

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                                                                                • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, STRATASYS

                                                                                  Printing Jigs and Fixtures Leads to Big Gains in Manufacturing Productivity

                                                                                  by Jerry Fireman on June 13, 2017

                                                                                  Printing-Jigs-and-Fixtures-Leads-to-Big-Gains-in-Manufacturing-Productivity-1Jigs and fixtures that hold parts or tools in just the right way to simplify manufacturing, assembly or inspection operations can dramatically increase shop floor productivity. For example, Digi International uses fixtures with integrated masks in a conformal coating process that eliminate the need for taping parts, saving about $123,750 for a typical production run.

                                                                                  CPI Aero produces fixtures that hold aerospace assemblies with complex contours so that they can easily be inspected with gage blocks and calipers, saving dozens of hours per assembly. Genesis Systems Group increases the safety of waterjet cutting by using end of arm tooling (EOAT) for a robot to move the part around the waterjet, eliminating potential safety hazards involved in moving the waterjet.

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                                                                                  • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, STRATASYS

                                                                                    Stratasys Announces Continuous Build 3D Demonstrator

                                                                                    by Lisa Hannon on June 6, 2017

                                                                                    Stratasys-Announces-Continuous-Build-3D-Demonstrator-1Stratasys recently announced the creation of an innovative new product: the Stratasys Continuous Build 3D Demonstrator. This multi-cell additive manufacturing platform is designed to continuously produce parts, and can be scaled to meet demand. Its innovative features could have major implications for the way additive manufacturing is done. Here’s everything you need to know about the Stratasys Continuous Build 3D Demonstrator.

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                                                                                    • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, FUSED DEPOSITION MODELING (FDM), 3D PRINTING TECH TIP

                                                                                      How to use GrabCAD Print: FDM

                                                                                      by Dan Erickson on June 2, 2017

                                                                                      GrabCAD Print is the latest 3D Print-Preparation (aka "slicing") software from Stratasys. Today, it supports all current Stratasys FDM (Fused Deposition Modeling) machines, as well as the J750 Polyjet machine, offering an intuitive user interface with improved scheduling functionality. For a high-level introduction to GrabCAD Print, check out this article. In today's blog, we'll discuss using GrabCAD Print for FDM  in practice, with a real-world example.

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                                                                                      • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, STRATASYS

                                                                                        Additive Manufacturing Makes Less Expensive Manufacturing Aids in Less Time

                                                                                        by Jerry Fireman on June 1, 2017

                                                                                        Additive-Manufacturing-Makes-Less-Expensive-Manufacturing-Aids-In-Less-Time-1Companies that succeed in manufacturing nearly always develop a wide range of manufacturing aids – custom tools that help manufacturing floor employees do various jobs faster, more accurately, with fewer steps, etc.

                                                                                        For example, Diebold uses many different fixtures to hold small components while they are machined or assembled. Swift Engineering uses sacrificial internal tools to create hollow features in composite structures. BMW uses custom hand tools for attaching bumper supports as well as a wide range of other assembly and testing jobs.

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                                                                                        • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, STRATASYS, RAPID PROTOTYPING

                                                                                          Disrupting the Supply Chain with 3D Printing: An Introduction to FDM Composite Tooling

                                                                                          by Lisa Hannon on May 23, 2017

                                                                                          Disrupting-the-Supply-Chain-with-3D-Printing-An-Introduction-to-FDM-Composite-Tooling-1The blog below was originally written and created by Ross Jones, Application Engineer at Stratasys. Fisher Unitech is sharing it with our readers due to the compelling story of how the manufacturing industry is solving problems with time and cost to produce tooling prototypes.

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                                                                                          • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, STRATASYS, 3D PRINTING MATERIALS

                                                                                            Nylon 12CF | Innovative 3D Printing Material for FDM Printers

                                                                                            by Lisa Hannon on May 18, 2017

                                                                                            nylon-12cf-innovative-3D-printing-material-for-FDM-Printers-1Stratasys recently launched a material in its new family of nylon, Nylon 12CF. This innovative new 3D printing nylon has a very high stiffness-to-weight ratio, and its potential applications are generating plenty of buzz in the 3D printing community. Here’s everything you need to know about Nylon 12CF.

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                                                                                            • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING MATERIALS

                                                                                              What’s the Difference Between Additive Manufacturing and 3D Printing?

                                                                                              by Jerry Fireman on April 21, 2017

                                                                                              Any industry that is growing rapidly is going to attract more than its share of controversy. With a forecast growth rate of 28.5% between 2016 and 2022, according to MarketsandMarkets, the business of producing parts is no exception. One of the hottest issues at the moment is simply what do we call it – 3D printing or additive manufacturing? Or are both terms valid for different segments of the market? Or do they mean the same thing?

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                                                                                              • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, SIMULATION

                                                                                                Why You Should Use Simulation and 3D Printing Technologies Together

                                                                                                by David Roccaforte on April 14, 2017

                                                                                                We often joke at Fisher Unitech that simulation technology, also known as Computer Aided Engineering (CAE), and 3D printing technology are competitors. In reality, for product development, they are engineering partners. Each has its respective strengths and weaknesses.

                                                                                                It’s kind of like a buddy cop show. One has street smarts and the other is the brainy young whippersnapper. When they work together they solve tough crimes. Simulation and 3D printing technologies work together to help prevent engineering crimes: such as missing project timing dates and quality and performance issues.

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                                                                                                • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, STRATASYS, 3D PRINTING MATERIALS

                                                                                                  The Future of Manufacturing: 3D Printing Innovations

                                                                                                  by Lisa Hannon on April 11, 2017

                                                                                                  3D printed prototypes have allowed designers and engineers to turn their ideas into reality with parts they can physically hold and manipulate. This technology The-Future-Of-Manufacturing-3D-Printing-Innovations-1has spurred innovation across multiple industries and changed the way people approach challenges. From a 3D printed splint that clears a baby’s airway to an aerospace part created in half the time, the benefits of rapid prototyping are numerous.

                                                                                                  3D printing companies have known the benefits of their products for years and are now getting others up to speed on this innovative way of creating solutions. Stratasys, for example, has been in the industry for more than 25 years and fostered relationships with manufacturers, engineers, and designers around the globe. The company recently released a video highlighting how their products’ capabilities have tapped into people’s imaginations and accelerated progress across industries.

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                                                                                                  • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, STRATASYS

                                                                                                    Which 3D Printing Solution Fits Your Business?

                                                                                                    by Lisa Hannon on April 6, 2017

                                                                                                    Do you have an interest in learning more about additive manufacturing with 3D printing solutions? Are you part of a team that wants to bring products to market Which-3D-Printing-Solution-Fits-Your-Business-1faster? 3D printing technologies might be the answer for you but how do you know? At Fisher Unitech, we want to provide you with a guide that can help — whether you are a beginner with 3D printing or someone who already uses the technology but wants to explore more solutions.

                                                                                                    No matter what level of knowledge you have with rapid prototyping, the guide “3D Printing Solutions” will help you determine if one of our solutions can help you design faster and smarter, bring products to market faster, or simply educate you further on how the technology works.

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                                                                                                    • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, STRATASYS

                                                                                                      Fail Your Way to Success in New Product Development with 3D Printing

                                                                                                      by Jerry Fireman on March 21, 2017

                                                                                                      If you are involved in new product development, you are probably facing a difficult paradox. You realize that thinking outside the box and taking risks is required to develop a product that will stand apart from the competition and achieve extraordinary success in the marketplace.

                                                                                                      On the other hand, you also recognize that this kind of risk-taking behavior more often than not leads to failure. And neither you nor members of your team want to be associated with failure, especially the repeated failures that are often required in the early stages of developing an innovative product.

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