According to Jason Lopes, lead engineer for Legacy Effects which does character design, creature design, suits, props, animatronics and collectibles, the 3D printing revolution is changing his company’s business dramatically. Legacy Effects’ typical large project, for example, doing a Halo commercial, involves creating a number of collectibles, masks and accessories for users.
Lopes uses 3D printers from Stratasys, manufacturer of the most comprehensive and advanced 3-D production systems available for designers and engineers in industry who create customized devices, prototypes, inventions, novelties and gifts.
Stratasys printers use “Refused Deposition Modeling” or FDM Technology to help create durable parts and fine detail from more than 150 molten materials including FDM thermoplastic and Polyjet Photopolymer contained in simple printer cartridges.
Manufacturing 3D Printing
Stratasys provides 3-D printing for aerospace, automotive, architecture, commercial product prototyping, dental, consumer product prototyping, medical device and defense designers and engineers. Use of 3D printers is expanding because they accelerate the design process, produce better designs and end products while cutting costs.
For example, NASA’s next rover will use 3-D printed parts and aerospace companies are modeling and prototyping turboprop engine models, jigs, fixtures, check gauges, end use aircraft parts … you name it.
Consumer Market Heating Up
Stratasys subsidiary MakerBot, one of the early manufacturers of 3D printers for the consumer market, started selling 3D printer kits in 2009 and was acquired in 2013 for $403 million. MakerBot runs “Thingverse”, a design sharing community and network of user groups.
See Stratasys white papers, for more details on the wide range of applications of 3D printing.