Additive Manufacturing Strategies

Simplify3D Expands Their 3D Printing Software Suite

ST Medical Devices

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There are at least 150 manufacturers of 3D printers and as many different formats, firmware sets, file types, and sequences in the bargain; that’s where Simplify3D enters the picture as they work to unify the processes across the markets. Many manufacturers already include their software suite as part of their new machine sales cycle as a result.

“We think broader compatibility will be a benefit for all parties involved,” says Clayton Webster, the founder and CEO of Simplify3D Software. “We hear from customers all the time asking which 3D printers are supported by our software package. We will be thrilled to tell them about all the new hardware platforms that are now compatible with their favorite software. It will help the manufacturers sell more 3D printers, and it gives the users more choices and functionality.”

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This expanded version of the company’s software suite includes support for MakerBot’s 5th Generation printers, the XYZprinting da Vinci line of printers, and PowerSpec 3D printers, as well as a number of new features aimed at improving the user experience to make 3D printing more intuitive and precise. It’s been a two-year long project, and Simplify3D has been expanding its software platform and building partnerships with 3D printer manufacturers.

Screen-Shot-2014-04-05-at-2.10.45-PM-e1396721729466“We provide a universal software platform that simplifies the process of 3D printing, regardless of the 3D printer you use,” said Webster. “Our team tests each 3D printer and works directly with 3D printer manufacturers so the user has the best possible integration of hardware and software. The goal is a seamless out-of-the-box user experience. We currently support over 100 different 3D printers, and we are constantly adding new models to that list. With this release, we are pleased to add 19 new 3D printers to our Supported Printer List.

The list of Simplify3D tools and processes includes:

  • A slicer that saves time and encourages experimentation
  • Mesh repair utilities to help prepare digital models for fabrication
  • An animated print simulation that allows users to identify errors before printing
  • Direct USB control of 3D printers and a full-featured machine control panel
  • Auto-generated support structures, or customized supports that can be added or removed with one click to simplify post-process cleanup
  • The ability to use different settings within one model to facilitate variable build properties
  • Advanced features for multi-part builds like tool path optimization algorithms that save time and improve part quality

Some of the newly added features include additional options for printing with dual extruders, the ability to vary the density of support material within an object so that more support can be placed where it is most necessary, thin wall intelligent fill, and the ability to increase the width of an objects infill, without increasing its print time.  The complete list of updated features are available here.

“Our software is used by engineers, teachers, designers, medical technicians and hobbyists – anyone who wants better quality models from their 3D printers,” Webster says. “We want to make sure that the hardware is never limited by the software. Without great software, these amazing 3D printers are like driving a Ferrari on cruise control. There is so much more capability under the hood with these machines. The software matters.”

You can get suggestions on how to use these new features and printing techniques by visiting the Simplify3D Blog.

Discuss your experiences with — or find out more about — Simplify3D in the Simplify3D 3D Printing Software Suite thread on 3DPB.com.

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