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3D Printing for Injection Moulding?

The advent of 3D printing has brought many advantages to the injection moulding world, not only through increases in the speed of production, but also because of innovation. Most tools for large production runs are produced out of various metals, which is the gold standard for customers who want to produce their product in bulk. However, smaller companies with a small market or reduced number of problems have always found the tooling cost a bitter pill to swallow. Now, 3D printing may be able to come to their aid, with 3D-printed injection moulds allowing production engineers the ability to produce custom parts rapidly and economically, even in larger quantities.

Using this method, it is possible to substantially reduce the lead times to production and also to produce multiple versions of the same product, allowing real life testing of prototypes before they are produced in substantial volumes. Not only does this have a cost and time saving benefit, but it is also much more environmentally friendly with a large reduction in materials and electricity used during the manufacturing process, as well as carbon during shipping.

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