3D Binder-Jet Metal Printing
Smith Metal Products new 3D Binder-Jet metal printing capability allows us to support customer’s R&D efforts with quick-turn 3D printed prototype MIM-like parts. We utilize fine powdered metal in metal 3D printing, and provides comparable characteristics of a part that will be present after the (MIM) metal injection molding process is complete for the full-scale production.
In contrast to other 3D printing methods, Binder jetting is the only form of metal powder 3D printing where a part is fully formed before any thermal energy is used to sinter or fuse the metal particles. And this has important ramifications for the final part’s micro-structure, which is critical to obtaining high quality functional and performing parts. Binder jetting uses a liquid binding agent and is sprayed onto a thin layer of powdered metal particles. Repeating this one layer at a time, the resulting part/parts are then cured and sintered at high temperatures, creating the final part. Just like MIM parts, 100% of the binder is removed during the sintering process.
Printing prototypes is quicker and more versatile versus producing expensive test molds for metal injection molding, or CNC machining costly prototype parts. Lead time for prototypes is reduced substantially and allows manufacturers to make adjustments quickly before the final MIM mold is established. 3D printed parts will allow you to gain confidence in your designs and your complete application.
Bracket component was 3D Binder Jet printed. This is a good MIM molding candidate, and went through several design changes before final part was approved before a MIM mold was created.
Lattice pattern is a repeating pattern in 3D Binder Jet printing. Reduces weight, saves on material costs, and provides structural strength.
Sample component from 3D Binder Jet printing and demonstrates the complex details possible.
Watch introduction of Smith Metal Products 3D Binder-Jet metal printing