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New 3D Printer Makes Tough Models

New 3D Printer Makes Tough Models

Golden Mousetrap 2009 WinnerThe new uPrint Personal 3D Printer prints 3-D models directly from CAD software, using fused deposition modeling technology to build models layer by layer in ABSplus thermoplastic. Printing 3-D models with uPrint allows engineers to test their designs, view them in three dimensions, then go back and iterate them. By modeling early and often throughout the design process, engineers can find design flaws early, when it's least expensive to correct them. uPrint models are used for: proof of concept - to explore multiple concepts quickly and affordably; 3-D Mockups to evaluate new product designs before production; and functional testing. uPrint models can be tested as working parts in real-world conditions. They can fit or snap together and hold tolerances. They can also be used for rapid tooling, specifically for vacuum forming masters.

uPrint is the first functional 3-D printer under $15,000, according to Stratasys. Its small footprint (25 x 26 x 31-inch) can fit in an engineer's cube/office. As a "personal" 3-D printer, uPrint means engineers won't have to wait in queue for a shared printer or for models to arrive from an outside service. An auto power down feature saves energy by shutting the printer off when a build is complete.

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