The 10 Most Unanswered Questions about Printing
The 3D printing technology was once no more than a prototyping tool – and clearly, it still is. But today, it has broken ground in the car manufacturing sector. This is now acknowledged as a major manufacturing technology, going beyond the construction of prototypes. Car makers and consumers alike now dream of 3D printed cars! Certainly, this can be done, thanks to the unstoppable development of 3D printing technologies and materials.
So what are the advantages of 3D printing for the automotive industry?
Speedier Iteration During Prototyping
First, 3D printing is a quick prototyping technology that is currently used in several fields. Quick prototype construction makes a large positive impact when it comes to the efficiency of the car manufacturing process. Using 3D printing can be a sure way to attain this goal, as it constructs parts quickly at an affordable cost compared to earlier prototyping procedures.
Reduced Car Weight
Car manufacturers are constantly looking for new methods of cutting the weight of their products. The greater the weight of a car, the more it consumes fuel; therefore, lighter cars are more environment-friendly than their heavier counterparts. Making a car lighter has a lot to do with optimizing the design of its parts. With the right optimizations, the weight of a part be lessened by as much as 90%. Either lighter structures are installed, thanks to innovative design patterns like lattices, or the total number of car parts is reduced to make a more efficient design.
Less Material Loss
The technology behind 3D printing allows you to build a part layer by layer. Hence, manufacturers only use how much of the material they need to build a particular car component. This is called subtractive manufacturing, where you would have lost material, which is less sustainable and entails some financial cost. The process is even more economical with metal materials. Indeed, avoiding extra costs for wasted material can be a huge game changer in terms of production.
Customized 3D Printed Cars
Car aficionados usually love to customize their cars to come up with something that is unique. This customization can be done to the car’s internal features, its external design or even both. But of course, because it’s a special order, this will come with a cost for manufacturers. With 3D printing, they can make but one version of a model without a fuss.
Easy Replacement of Parts
Finally, if certain parts of a car are broken, it can be a real challenge to replace them, especially if they are old and may not exist anymore. So what’s there for you to do? With 3D scanning combined with additive manufacturing, rare spare parts can be reproduced and even optimized anytime.