The phrase “my kid could make that” is now literally applicable to millions of plastic shapes, thanks to the wide proliferation of consumer-grade 3D printers.The apparent ease of printing a finished product directly from a digital model with no moulds or tooling, however, has caused many to underestimate the challenges and the costs of applying the technology in production environments.
This is particularly problematic in AM (additive metal) manufacturing, where the barrier to entry is much higher than it is for plastics.
“Additive is a unique process, and I think it’s probably one of the most over-hyped technologies in the world,” says Peter Adams, president and CEO at additive manufacturer Burloak Technologies, “and I truly believe that this is creating a major misunderstanding of the technology. And that is causing a lot of people to invest money that they never would have to put at risk if they asked the right questions. Full Article