Here at 3D Quick Printing, the Midlands fasting growing 3D printing service bureau, we use FDM technology to 3D print parts in ABS plastic. Parts are strong, functional and are being used in a wide range of applications.
We use Stratasys 3D printers and a few weeks ago they launched a real game changer. We love the strap line “Stratasys invents 3D printing AGAIN”. The all new J750 is based on Polyjet technology that we tried for a while at our 3D printing service bureau. Polyjet is great for fine feature detail capture but it’s not strong enough for working parts that require functionality. Polyjet uses a resin that accurately ‘prints’ very small droplets of resin that is immediately cured by a UV light. Slice height can go down to 0.016mm. At our 3D printing service bureau we can use .178mm, .254mm and .330mm.
The J750 uses 6 colours that will allow to 3D print in over 360,000 colour combinations using the CMYKW range. Some of the models that they have on the website are amazing. Follow this link to read more. http://www.stratasys.com/3d-printers/production-series/stratasys-j750
Stratasys are not the only players in colour 3D printing. There are in-fact two others who have a place when you begin to talk about colour 3D printing. 3D Systems have their powder based technology that has been improving over the last few years. The powder bed is solidified layer by layer by infused ink that needs to be made stronger with a ‘superglue’. Parts could be considered brittle but the process is very quick and ideal for architectural models and landscapes. Check out those machines and follow the link below.
Finally the third player in colour 3D printing is Mcor Technologies. This uses paper to 3D print parts. It’s quite unique how the layers are firstly printed on a standard colour 3D printer. Then those sheets of paper are then fed into the 3D printer layer by layer. There is also a gluing and cutting process and after the 3D print is finished the block of paper is removed from the build bed and chunks of the unwanted paper are removed until you expose the full model. This link will tell you more. http://mcortechnologies.com/3d-printers/matrix-300-plus
If we had a choice at our 3D printing service bureau we would go for the Stratasys J750 but with a price tag of over £200k it might be a while till we invest in that.
Just to remind you all that at our 3D printing bureau service we only use Professional Stratasys 3D printers that use FDM technology. We have two machines. One is a Dimension Elite 3D printer has a build envelope of 204 x 204 x 305mm and the other is also a Dimension machine that has a bigger build envelope of 254 x 254 x 305mm. These are considered to be mid-range as far as build envelopes go.
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