This week’s stories we didn’t cover include news that Rehovot, Israel-based Opel has successfully used Stratasys 3D printers to eliminate manufacturing tool production costs by 90%. And there’s no better sign that 3D printing technologies are becoming mainstream than major retailers offering the hardware — and Target.com is now carrying XYZprinting printers and filament. (And just in time to make your holiday shopping easier…) Also in the news is that both 3D 2.0 Ltd. and 3D Systems have made new appointments: to Chief Executive Officer and Board of Directors, respectively. There’s also 3D printing news coming from Europe. Germany’s voxeljet has hit a milestone of its 100th 3D printer shipped, and in Poland, an orthopedic surgeon has successfully completed a 3D printed pelvis that will allow a bone cancer patient to avoid being bed-ridden.
Manufacturer Opel Adopts Use of Stratasys 3D Printers for Big Reduction in Costs
Manufacturing giant Opel has been able to slash manufacturing tool production costs by up to 90%. The company has also been able to 3D print assembly tools in less than 24 hours — all using Stratasys 3D printers. Opel was the third largest brand of car manufacturer in the EU in 2014, selling over one million cars. One of Opel’s big successes is the iconic Adam hatchback car. The company International Technical Development Center is 3D printing assembly and manufacturing tools to speed up the making of this iconic car. The 3D printed tools are being used for attaching components, like roof spoilers and rocker molding, assemble the glass and roofs, and ensure that the ‘Adam’ lettering on the back side window is straight.
Andy Middleton, President of Stratasys EMEA, summarizes how Stratasys can aid companies in production time and quality.
“Cases like Opel emphasize the massive impact that low risk, high-reward 3D printed parts – such as manufacturing tools – can have on production efficiency. The capability to produce such items on-demand at a reduced costs can significantly accelerate time-to-production and give businesses that competitive edge. Combine that with the ability to customize tools efficiently, as well as create complex geometries, and you can see why Opel is indicative of the way in which additive manufacturing is transforming our customer’s production operations.”
You can view a video about how Stratasys has been aiding Opel’s manufacturing process here.
XYZprinting’s 3D Printers Now Available on Target.com
There are occasionally stories that pop up here in the world of 3D printing news that indicate that 3D printing is becoming more and more popular, and may even grow into a household name. This is one of those stories. Now, XYZprinting’s da Vinci Jr 1.0 will be sold for $349 on Target.com, just in time for your holiday purchases! Target.com will also make ABS filament cartridges available for $27.99 and biodegradable PLA filaments available for $24.99. While the da Vinci Junior has made news as a very cost-effective and user-friendly 3D printer, XYZprinting also make an all in one scanner and printer known as the da Vinci AiO.
Simon Shen, CEO of XYZprinting, had this to say about having its products carried by Target.com:
“We’ve made a conscious effort this past year to expand accessibility to XYZprinting 3D printing products by working with key online retailers like Target.com. XYZprinting is excited to offer Target.com’s broad and young consumer audience with the tools to experience the open-ended possibilities of 3D printing.”
Suddenly, purchasing high quality 3D printers, which come with a one-year warranty and YouTube video tutorials also, has gotten easier. Now you can take care of your 3D printing supplies along with your other holiday puchases!
3D 2.0 Ltd. Picks New CEO and Announces Funding Preparations
Brian Gale, who has decades of experience in the tech and video game sectors and has worked with large media companies like Saatchi & Saatchi and Future US, has been chosen as the new 3D 2.0 Ltd Chief Executive Officer. 3D 2.0 Ltd is the manufacturer of a hand-held, heated tool designed for finishing 3D prints, called Retouch3D, which held a successful crowdfunding Kickstarter campaign last May. Within 48 hours, the team reached its funding goals of $56,398, and now it’s preparing to see its first round of equity funding and an international product launch, with Gale leading the company. The Retouch3D, with its interchangeable tips and heat settings, is in an exciting new category of 3D printing products. And if the public’s reaction to the Kickstarter campaign is any indication, it will be possibly a very popular item: maybe even a 3D printing must-have! We will see!
3D Systems Makes New Board of Directors Appointment
Over at 3D Systems, there’s also been a new appointment. This one is to the Board of Directors as 3D Systems welcomes Thomas W. Erickson aboard as an “independent director” of the company. Erickson is currently serving as Director of American Renal Associates, Luminex Corporation, and Syncreon Group Holdings Limited. And much of his business experience over the past decades promises to aid him in his new Board of Directors position. Says Wally Lowenbaum, the Chairman of 3D Systems, of Erickson’s appointment:
“We are pleased to have someone of Thomas’ caliber join our board of directors. He brings decades of experience in the c-suites and the board rooms of fast moving businesses and will be a valuable addition as 3D Systems moves decisively into the next era.”
Germany’s voxeljet Ships Its 100th 3D Printer
Friedberg, Germany-based voxeljet is excited about reaching a manufacturing and distribution goal in the month of November with the shipping of its 100th 3D printer — the VX1000. This printer has a large build space (1000 mm x 600 mm x 500 mm), it is also multi-purpose, and it, impressively, has the ability to recycle non-printed particle materials. Hubert Stärker, voxeljet’s Director of Sales and Marketing, attributes voxeljet’s growing popularity to a few factors:
“Many customers who have their molds printed at our service center eventually want their own 3D printer, whether for reasons of flexibility or economy. Another reason for the positive development lies in the many advantages offered by the 3D printing technology, which are gradually making their way into more industries and induce companies to purchase their own machines.”
More uses for 3D printers means more customers for voxeljet, and the company hopes to continue expanding its reach beyond its 100th 3D printer, as the demand for 3D printers in general also increases.
Poland 3D Prints and Implants New Pelvis for Man with Cancer
Dr. Jerzy Nazar is the head of the Orthopedics ward at the Heliodor Święcicki Medical University in Poznań, Poland and he recently led a team in a five-hour long surgery that reconstructed a man’s entire pelvis. But what’s really impressive is that the team was able to avoid amputating a limb and a large portion of the pelvis due to 3D printing. Costing $16,000 USD and requiring two months to complete, the customized 3D model that the team used was developed based on the patient’s exact x-rays and scans.
The patient, a fifty-year-old man battling advanced bone cancer, was able to avoid being bed-ridden for life thanks to the use of 3D printing and the orthopedics team he was fortunate to have treat him. It is reported that the man is in good condition and plans to move to a normal life after undergoing six weeks of rehabilitation.
“Had it not been for the state-of-the-art tech solutions, the patient would have faced an amputation of an entire limb along with nearly a half of his pelvis,” said Doctor Jerzy Nazar, the head of the orthopaedics ward of the Heliodor Święcicki Medical University in Poznań.
And that’s the 3D printing news in short from this week! Let us know which of these stories were your favorites in the 3D Printing Stories We Missed forum thread on 3DPB.com.