New Automatic Waste Removal Feature Doubles Speed, Cuts Post Processing for Mcor Full-Color 3D Printing

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Mcor at SOLIDWORKS World 2017 [Photo: Sarah Goehrke]

One of the most unique 3D printing companies in the industry is Mcor. The Irish manufacturer’s 3D printers print not with plastic, not with metal but with paper, yet their parts are stronger than you would ever expect paper to be. Their technology, Selective Deposition Lamination, involves laying down sheets of regular office paper one layer at a time as a blade cuts out the shape of the object to be 3D printed. Adhesive is applied over each layer before the next is placed down. Mcor was also responsible for the first full-color desktop 3D printer, the Mcor ARKe, which uses inkjet technology to color each layer as it is cut.

Like most other 3D printing technologies, Selective Deposition Lamination requires some post-processing. When the print is finished, you have what looks like a solid stack of paper – the 3D printed object is there, but the excess paper has to be pulled away to reveal it. The difficulty level of this task depends on how complex the object is, but post-processing overall is an annoyance that few, if any, like to deal with. Mcor, however, has introduced a new feature that takes away that annoyance altogether.

[Image: Mcor]

Automatic Waste Removal, or AWR, is a new feature that Mcor has introduced for the ARKe. As an object is printing, the excess paper is now immediately removed by the machine itself, so you don’t get that solid block of paper anymore when the build is finished – just your 3D printed part. It’s not perfect – it only works on certain models, according to Mcor, and it’s likely that more complex models will still need to have the excess paper removed by hand. But for some models, this feature can save you a lot of time and effort.

“We have just introduced the AWR feature which will deliver certain full colour models in half the time,” Dr. Conor MacCormack, Founder and CEO of Mcor Technologies, told 3DPrint.com.

“As we know most 3D printing techniques require post processing and all full colour 3d printing requires either the removal of powder, resin or paper to expose the 3D printed object. But imagine looking at your model appearing before your very eyes as it prints in full colour without having to remove the waste! Ultimately the biggest benefit here is that this saves time during the build and in post processing, indeed utilizing the roll as a transfer mechanism to remove the waste was something we’ve wanted to do from the very start with the ARKe. This is just the start of the development of this feature as we expand its capabilities to enable every part to be printed in this way.”

[Image: Mcor]

According to Mcor, printing itself is twice as fast with the new AWR feature. No new hardware is required, just a software update.

Mcor isn’t the first to virtually eliminate post-processing, but any effort to do so is welcomed by 3D printer users, and AWR will undoubtedly be welcomed by ARKe users, who can both print faster and avoid the work that typically comes at the end.

Discuss post processing and other 3D printing topics at 3DPrintBoard.com or share your thoughts below. 

 

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