Additive Manufacturing Strategies

Formlabs New Dental Unit & The Formlabs 3B: Dentistry Done Different

ST Medical Devices

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There is no question about it, the demand for dental services will increase as the population ages and research continues to link oral health to overall health, and for many, 3D printed braces have become a far more popular solution than traditional ones. Modern dentistry is advancing both dental treatment and education (virtual simulation is changing the way students learn), as well as providing better oral care for patients. Dental practitioners are rushing to adopt 3D printing technology in a growing field with important applications in digital technologies, including less invasive procedures and some unusual new materials that can promote healing, though still a bit futuristic. Today we are seeing a lot of new manufacturing technologies to address the growing demand for prosthetics and restoration work, as they come within reach of more people. Looking into this bright future ahead, today Formlabs launches its new Dental Business Unit: Formlabs Dental.

The new segment is complete with more additive manufacturing options, including the novel Form 3B, new materials and a service plan, giving labs and orthodontic professionals what they need to go digital and meet the growing demands of the dental industry.

“Since launching the Form 2, 3D printing adoption within the dental industry has increased significantly. By bringing down the cost for entry, Formlabs revolutionized the dental market. Today’s announcement of the Form 3B will continue to grow the technology’s adoption and help provide dental products you would be proud to deliver. The incredibly accurate Form 3B produces crisp and consistent dental parts, while the Dental Service Plan provides the confidence to go digital,” said Jay Burton, Board Certified Orthodontist at SmileMaker Orthodontics.

MIT Media Lab spin-off Formlabs designs and manufactures powerful and accessible 3D printing systems, managing to have a great deal of success with stereolithography (SLA), a technology many experts thought would be toast. Actually, reported last year that Formlabs took what looked to be a rather simple challenge and outexecuted in all regards, popularizing SLA and Pro and performing better for one particular group of people: designers and engineers that needed smooth, highly detailed parts in semi-office settings.

According to a Key Group survey, Formlabs is the most installed 3D printer for small, medium and large-sized dental labs. So it makes sense that their new dental unit will provide a team of dental professionals dedicated to providing the best 3D printing solutions for the industry, a new printer, and platform that will have the next generation of dental materials, a dedicated service team, and software to help streamline workflows.

According to the company, the new Form 3B printer allows for a growing list of more than 10 dental applications, while users can switch seamlessly between a library of resins with a no-hassle cartridge system. Each application is validated and tested by a team of dental experts to ensure quality and accuracy, including:

  1. Crown and bridge models
  2. Clear aligner and retainer models
  3. Diagnostic models
  4. Surgical guides
  5. Occlusal splints
  6. Patterns for casting and pressing
  7. Dentures with 4 base and 6 tooth shades

Formlabs claims that, thanks to the 50 materials scientists and print process engineers behind Formlabs Dental products, they will provide “the strongest team in 3D printing.” The dental materials that are available to be used on the new Form 3B printer include their in-house developed biocompatible Surgical Guide Resin and four new shades in the Dentures material library. Additionally, during a recent dentistry webinar, Formlabs expert consultant Sam Wainright also announced that the company will be offering more denture bases and denture teeth shapes to complement an already existing array of products.

“When patients visit the dentist, they want a fast, customized solution for their teeth,” said Max Lobovsky, CEO and co-founder of Formlabs. “Our new Form 3B printer is uniquely tailored to seamlessly digitize, streamline and expedite workflow so dentists and technicians can focus on providing patients with the outcomes they expect and deserve. We have already touched the lives of over hundreds of thousands of patients, having printed 13 million dental parts on the Form 2 and, with the launch of Form 3B, aim to expand that reach even further to ensure all dental care providers can bring an exceptional level of attention to their patients.”

Form 3B printer

In addition, Formlabs Dental is announcing the Formlabs Materials Partner Platform for the Form 3B, which allows third-party manufacturers to work together with Formlabs, bringing the best and most cutting edge materials to the market on the popular and affordable Formlabs system.

Form 3B printer and material cartridges

To support market adoption, the new Formlabs Dental Service Plan is backed by a team of certified dental specialists providing self-serve learning pathways and specialized training and includes personalized in-person or video training; priority email and phone support with dental specialists, and hot-swapping printers for nonstop production.

“Today’s announcement is a further validation of Formlabs continued commitment to the dental market,” said Stephan Kreimer, manager at Kreimer Dentallabor. “The new Form 3B, Surgical Guide Resin and Dental Service Plan will empower users to expand upon their current workflows to become digital.”

Let us know your thoughts! Join the discussion of this and other 3D printing topics at

[Images: Formlabs]

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