27-09-22 Additive manufacturing making its way
Mantle launched a metal 3D printing technology for toolmaking, simplifying the way mold tool components are made, and accelerating how manufacturers make molded parts. The announcement follows the successful beta testing of the printers at several leading injection molding and moldmaking companies, including Westminster Tool.
Mantle’s system includes its patented TrueShape technology and P-200 printer. This hybrid system is built on a CNC platform and integrates printing and machining to produce parts with the accuracy and surface finish required for tools. The P-200 printer has a build volume of 200 x 200 x 150 mm. Also included is the F-200 furnace, which sinters parts from the printer, with one furnace able to sinter multiple parts and support multiple printers.
The package also includes two tool steel materials, H13 and P2X, which the company says is comparable to P20. These materials perform like traditional tool steels, supporting secondary operations like machining, polishing, coating and laser welding. Finally, the package also includes software that automates the printing process, including the generation of all toolpaths and machine instructions.
A North American on-demand manufacturing company, reportedly reduced its toolmaking time by 45% with components made by Mantle’s technology. Toolmaking operations were cut from 200 hours to 110 hours by eliminating or reducing multiple operations, including CNC milling, EDM and polishing.
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