Other than standard PLA and ABS, few 3D printing filaments have been as successful as the line of NinjaFlex flexible filaments from Fenner Drives. The Pennsylvania-based rubber and flexible material manufacturer didn’t really need to start producing 3D printing materials; they already had a huge market presence developing products like engine belts, conveyor systems and rubber seals. But their first attempt at a 3D printing material was so successful that they needed to launch a dedicated website to handle the interest in the material. The flexible filament will print on most standard FDM 3D printers and despite being quite malleable the product is remarkably durable and difficult to tear once solidified.
It seems that the success of NinjaFlex has made quite the impression on Fenner Drives as they have just announced plans to create NinjaTek, a new, dedicated 3D printing division within Fenner Drives. The new entity was designed to expand the market reach of NinjaFlex as well as develop and increase their line of 3D printing materials and filaments. NinjaTek will be drawing on both the industrial materials expertise of Fenner Drives as well as the high-profile success of NinjaFlex in the 3D printing filament market.
“The purpose of the new division is to expand the offerings beyond that of NinjaFlex filament. The focus will be on materials with high performance characteristics that are important to those in the industrial sector. We do expect to launch 2 – 3 new materials at CES in January,” the newly promoted Vice President and General Manager of NinjaTek Wendy Booker told 3DPrint.
Fenner Drives also announced the promotion or hiring of several key staff members to head up the new division. In addition to NinjaTek Vice President and General Manager Wendy Booker, the company poached their new Research and Development Manager Jake McDonough from 3D Systems and promoted their new Global Sales Manager Andrew Besancon from within Fenner Drives. NinjaTek’s new Product Marketing Manager Toby Imgrund is also a Fenner Drives alum and was one of the key players for the development of the new 3D printing materials division. The NinjaTek team also includes R&D Specialist Erin Shevock, UK-based Business Development Manager Janan Thomson, and Business Development Specialist Arias Pappas.
“By joining the industrial materials expertise of Fenner Drives with the Additive Manufacturing success of NinjaFlex filament,” said Booker, “NinjaTek is positioned well to continue our success in the 3D materials world.”
Currently Fenner Drives sells NinjaFlex in more than 25 countries in addition to their large range of flexible power transmission, motion transfer, and conveying applications. By creating a standalone business division dedicated to 3D printing materials and 3D printing product development the company is hoping to further expand their presence in the industry. This is a crystal clear sign that Fenner Drives is seeing a lot of growth potential in 3D printing applications and their upcoming products being launched at CES should be greeted with quite a bit of industry enthusiasm.
Currently NinjaFlex is available in 26 different colors including metallics, semi-transparent and glow-in-the-dark filaments. There are currently two varieties of filament available: the standard, flexible NinjaFlex and a less elastic SemiFlex. Both are available in 1.75mm or 3mm diameters and the cost per spool ranges between $52 and $65. You can find out more about how NinjaFlex works over on the product’s website.
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