3D Printing


  • POSTED IN STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

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

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

        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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        • POSTED IN STRATASYS, FUSED DEPOSITION MODELING (FDM), 3D PRINTING

          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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          • POSTED IN STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

            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 TECH TIP, CAD, SOLIDWORKS, 3D PRINTING

              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 FISHER UNITECH NEWS, SOLIDWORKS, 3D PRINTING

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

                by Angelle Erickson on October 12, 2017

                Meet-our-experts-Dan-Erickson-3D-Printing-Application-EngineerMeet 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 STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                  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 CAD, SOLIDWORKS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

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

                      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 CAD, SOLIDWORKS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                        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 STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                          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 FISHER UNITECH NEWS, STRATASYS, 3D PRINTING

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

                            by Angelle Erickson on September 7, 2017

                            Meet-our-experts-Alex-Pauley-Senior-3D-Printing-Field-Technician-1The 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 FISHER UNITECH NEWS, 3D PRINTING

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

                              by Angelle Erickson on August 31, 2017

                              Meet-Our-Experts-Greg-Pancoast-3D-Printing-Field-TechnicianIf 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 CAD, SOLIDWORKS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                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 EDUCATION AND RESEARCH, CAD, SOLIDWORKS, 3D PRINTING

                                  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 STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

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

                                      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 TECH TIP, STRATASYS, 3D PRINTING

                                        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 MATERIALS, STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                          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 METAL 3D PRINTING, DESKTOP 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 TECH TIP, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                              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 STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                                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 MATERIALS, STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

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

                                                    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 STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                                      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 STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                                        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 STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

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

                                                            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 STRATASYS, 3D PRINTING

                                                              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 STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

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

                                                                  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 STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                                                    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 RAPID PROTOTYPING, STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                                                      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 MATERIALS, STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                                                        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 MATERIALS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                                                          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 SIMULATION, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                                                            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 MATERIALS, STRATASYS, 3D PRINTING

                                                                              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 STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                                                                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 STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                                                                  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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                                                                                  • POSTED IN STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                                                                    First Impressions: Stratasys F370 Review

                                                                                    by Angelle Erickson on March 14, 2017

                                                                                    First-impressions-Stratasys-F370-reviewStratasys officially announced the new F123 series at SOLIDWORKS World 2017 in Los Angeles on February 6th to thousands of attendees. The new lineup had big shoes to fill since Stratasys has discontinued production of the Fortus 250 and Dimension printers.  

                                                                                    So is the new F123 series from Stratasys living up to all the hype? I spoke to two of our 3D printing experts here at Fisher Unitech who work with the full range of Stratasys 3D printers on a daily basis. After having the new F370 for well over a month now, I was interested in what kind of an impact it has been having on its daily users.

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                                                                                    • POSTED IN FISHER UNITECH NEWS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                                                                      Additive Manufacturing Experts Weigh In at Stratasys F123 Innovation Event

                                                                                      by Christa Prokos on March 10, 2017
                                                                                      Additive-Manufacturing-Experts-Weigh-In-at-Stratasys-F123-Innovation-Event-11

                                                                                      When you gather a group of manufacturing experts, professionals, technology and service providers at an event to discuss additive manufacturing it’s going to get interesting—and full of heartfelt stories that shaped careers. 

                                                                                      The half day event took place on March 7th at the Michigan State University Management Education Center in Troy, Michigan near Fisher Unitech’s headquarters. This was the first in a series of ten Driving Manufacturing Innovation events taking place in multiple cities.

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                                                                                      • POSTED IN STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                                                                        GrabCAD Print: Here’s what you Need to Know

                                                                                        by Dan Erickson on March 6, 2017

                                                                                        If you’ve been in the 3D printing world a while, GrabCAD is probably not unfamiliar to you. Along with Thingiverse and MyMinifactory, GrabCAD has been a stalwart repository of 3D-printable files; notable, in native CAD formats. Over the past 8 years, GrabCAD has been (and remains) an invaluable resource to some two million members.

                                                                                        grabCAD-Print-Heres-what-you-need-to-knowSo what’s this GrabCAD Print thing, you ask? Well, it’s a slicer. Like Catalyst, Insight, and others, it slices a CAD model into thin layers, and then writes the instructions for a 3D printer to lay down material for each layer. GrabCAD Print supports polygon-based STL files, but unlike most, also directly reads native geometric modeling file formats like SOLIDWORKS, CATIA, UG/NX (among others) and the usual neutral formats (e.g., step, parasolid, iges); even assembly files.

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                                                                                        • POSTED IN STRATASYS, 3D PRINTING

                                                                                          Introducing the F123 Series 3D Printers

                                                                                          by Stacey Clement on February 6, 2017

                                                                                          3D printing fans, rejoice - the next generation of FDM 3D printers from Stratasys is here! Stratasys announced its new line of 3D printers, the F123 series, at the SOLIDWORKS World conference on Monday, Feb. 6. The line includes three powerful printers: the F170, F270, and F370.  We have all the details of the big announcement, plus a webcast on the new line that is scheduled for Wednesday, Feb. 8.

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                                                                                          • POSTED IN SOLIDWORKS, 3D PRINTING

                                                                                            SOLIDWORKS World Preview 2017

                                                                                            by Stacey Clement on February 2, 2017

                                                                                            SOLIDWORKS World 2017 will be here on February 5th, giving designers the opportunity to network, learn about new products, and choose from 200+ breakout sessions for a fresh perspective on the 3D design industry. Sessions will cover technical training, reseller training, and general topics.

                                                                                            This year SOLIDWORKS has also introduced the Learning Path, where attendees can choose from one of four Learning Paths: Internet of Things, Model Based Definition, Additive Manufacture, and Subtractive Manufacturing. According to SOLIDWORKS, the learning paths will “give attendees a jump start in these important and emerging aspects of manufacturing.”

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                                                                                            • POSTED IN ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                                                                              The Future of the Automotive Industry - 3D Printing Takes the Wheel

                                                                                              by Rob Stipek on January 25, 2017

                                                                                              Since the beginning, the automotive sector has been taking advantage of 3D printing for manufacturing and design applications. With a quick turn around rate, companies are able to produce concept models, functional prototypes, and manufacturing aids in a short amount of time. With this technology at hand, today’s technologies have drastically improved from the idea of a prototype to the full production of 3D printed vehicles like the Local Motors Strati concept car.

                                                                                              Automotive industries are seeing the positive effects of using additive The-Future-of-the -Automotive-Industry-3D-printing-takes-the-wheel1manufacturing. Paul Susalla, the section supervisor of Rapid Manufacturing at Ford stated, “You can come up with a really optimized part at the end of the day...That’s all because of the speed with which we can produce the prototype parts without tooling.” Not only are 3D printed prototypes great for a fast turnaround, but statistics are being proven with numbers.

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                                                                                              • POSTED IN 3D SCANNING, CAD, 3D PRINTING

                                                                                                Digitizing Real-World Objects with 3D Scanners

                                                                                                by Danny Jackson Levy on January 20, 2017

                                                                                                Digitizing-Real-World-Objects-with-3D-Scanners1Engineers today have a wide array of software in their virtual toolbox which they can use to create precise 3D representations of designed models. However, the typical old school manufacturing facility contains an abundance of legacy components, worn out tools and other parts which may not have accurate CAD data associated with it.

                                                                                                Enter 3D scanning, a technology integral to the progression of manufacturing through what is described as ‘the fourth industrial revolution’.

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                                                                                                • POSTED IN 3D PRINTING

                                                                                                  New Year, New Strategy – Why you Should Implement 3D Printing for your Business

                                                                                                  by Rob Stipek on January 4, 2017

                                                                                                  The most recent Wohlers Report states that the additive manufacturing industry grew to $5.1 billion dollars and shows no projected signs of slowing down over new-year-new-strategy-why-you-should-implement-3d-printing-for-your-business1the next four years. This growth in additive manufacturing is driven by designers and manufacturers finding value in using the technology to enable better ways of bringing products to life. As manufacturing moves into the 4th industrial revolution, where additive manufacturing is crucial, implementing new technologies is essential in order to gain a competitive edge.

                                                                                                  Additive manufacturing, or 3D printing the more common term, is the process by which digital 3D design is used to build up a component in layers by depositing material. Since the 1980s, the use of 3D printing, along with the maturity of technology and materials, has driven the steady growth in replacing traditional manufacturing means. You can now commonly see manufacturers such as BMW, Oreck, and Airbus using 3D printing for applications ranging from prototypes to manufacturing floor tools.

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                                                                                                  • POSTED IN STRATASYS, ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                                                                                    Are you stuck in the past waiting on the future?

                                                                                                    by Nick Licari on December 29, 2016

                                                                                                    Back in 1989, Doc Brown and Marty McFly promised me that in 2015 we wouldn’t need roads where we were going—we would have flying cars. By using this same concept today in the additive manufacturing community, I should still be driving my 1987 Chevy Celebrity until flying cars become available. As you can guess, I’ve purchased new cars since 1987. Think of all the advancements in automotive technology since then; sure it may not be as advanced as flying cars, but in 1989 had Hollywood been able to sell us on heated seats, GPS, park assist, and autonomous vehicles I think we may have been just as excited.

                                                                                                    So what does this have to do with additive manufacturing? Like Hollywood, large 3D printing companies are making big promises as to what their technologies may be capable of in the future… but not today. This futuristic “what if” is leading to more and more companies holding on to their 1987 Celebrities and barely getting by, hoping to buy that flying car when it becomes available rather than trading it in for current technology that is readily available and industry leading today. Companies such as HP and Rize Inc are constantly making promises on what their systems can do some day... but not today, or tomorrow, or the next year, or the year after that. So why would I buy their technology today?

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                                                                                                    • POSTED IN ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING, 3D PRINTING

                                                                                                      Happy Holidays! Here’s a Geek’s Guide to Gift Giving

                                                                                                      by Angelle Erickson on December 21, 2016

                                                                                                      happy-holidays-heres-a-geeks-guide-to-gift-giving-1Engineers and designers spend a big portion of their day down a continuous path of possibilities and creation. With technology changing and improving at such a rapid pace, having the latest and greatest can mean faster production and improvements in the overall work environment.

                                                                                                      These engineers and designers in our lives are tech savvy. When inquiring about technical gadgets and gizmos they are the first person you turn to. So what kind of gift do you give to the person who is always on top of their game? In the 3D printing and CAD world there are many inspiring technologies.

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