Additive Manufacturing Strategies

Laser Sintering 3D Printer, Sintratec, Reaches CrowdFunding Goal, Announces New Materials

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s4When Sintratec launched their SLS desktop 3D printer on Indiegogo back in November, the campaign was met with a lot of enthusiasm. After all, selective laser sintering is completely foreign to desktop 3D printing, and certainly hasn’t been anywhere near affordable. Sintratec, whose printer goes by the same name, changed all this when they offered the world’s first desktop SLS printer for under $4,000.

With a goal set at $175,000, even a promising campaign like theirs certainly was anything but a sure bet to be achieved. Here we are though, 19 days into the campaign, with 12 days remaining, and the company has already eclipsed their goal, raising $189,000 thus far. Certainly this is big news for the industry, as a third technology, in addition to FDM/FFF and SLA can be now added to the current options users of desktop 3D printers have at their disposal.

Over the last few weeks, since their campaign launched, Sintratec has improved their heating system, thanks in part to the optimization of the printer’s software. Better heating means more material options, and that’s just what the company has been able to do.  Today they’ve announced three new materials for their 3D printer, as a way to celebrate eclipsing their crowdfunding goal.

s2

Black Nylon (Left), Original Material (Center), Bright Gray Nylon (Right)

Included in these materials is a completely new black nylon compound powder, which you can see used in the black chain in the image above. They’ve also introduced a brighter grey pigmented nylon, which because of its lighter shade, requires a slower printing speed. Typically, darker materials will absorb the laser’s heat much more efficiently, leading to quicker melt times, but this brighter color of nylon powder will required a print speed of approximately 50mm/sec instead of the typical 100mm/sec that the Sintratec printer is capable of. The company assures us that these two new materials share the same basic thermal and mechanical properties as seen with their original nylon powder.

Finally, Sintratec has introduced an aluminium filled polyamide powder. Objects printed with this material maintain a metallic look and feel to them. Like materials we have seen coming from colorFabb, such as bronzeFill and copperFill, thiss3 new aluminum composite can be processed via sanding, and polishing to better realize its metal attributes. Although the aluminum does not melt during the sintering process, the surrounding polyamide does, and thus acts as an incredibly strong binder within an object.  Objects printed with this new aluminum compound are typically stiffer and can withstand a higher thermal load. The claw to the right was printed in a single piece by Sintratec, using this new aluminum polyamide material.

Without a doubt, these three new materials will make the Sintratec printer even more appealing, as they continue to bring in funding via Indiegogo over the next 12 days. Let us know if you have backed this project, and your thoughts on Sintratec’s latest materials in the Sintratec Material forum thread on 3DPB.com.

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