The Technology HouseSea, Air and Space

Archive for the ‘Additive Manufacturing’ Category

How 3D Printing with Stereolithography is Helping Launch a new Surgical Navigation Technology

Posted on: August 14th, 2018 by The Technology House

Some of us learn by simply reading from a textbook, others learn by hearing directions aloud, but many of us learn from hands-on exposure to a task or concept presented to us.

The Technology House (TTH) teamed up with Cleveland-based medical start-up company Centerline Biomedical, Inc. to aid in their demonstration and explanation of their product and its value. Centerline Biomedical, Inc. is commercializing a novel surgical navigation technology aimed at vastly improving the precision, safety, and control in minimally invasive endovascular procedures.

Centerline Biomedical requirements:

  • Transparent model that allows surgeons to see tools in practice
  • Display movement of the apparatus going inside the aorta
  • Durable model to withstand multiple shipments and demonstrations
  • Create a high-quality, visually accurate model

Today, when a patient receives a stent or stent-graft, surgeons use X-ray fluoroscopy for navigation, which provides a poor form of visualization and subjects patients and caregivers to dangerous ionizing radiation. Centerline’s IOPS technology is designed to give surgeons high resolution color 3D imaging without using ionizing radiation.

Essential to the success of a young high-tech start-up is the ability to demonstrate the technology to potential investors, customers and other stakeholders, and Centerline looked to The Technology House to fulfill their need of a portable and rugged version of their technology and demonstration pieces. With their 22-year history in creating rapid prototype models for demonstrations, The Technology House was able to provide insight and information to Centerline Biomedical, Inc.

“The Technology House leveraged its rapid prototyping capabilities in Stereolithography to 3D print a vascular phantom and electronics housings exquisitely suited to our needs.”
– Vikash Goel, Chief Technology Officer

Centerline Biomedical envisions these demo prototypes eventually leading to product lines for training and educational use.

The Challenge: Create an Aesthetic, Durable Model in a Clear Paintable Material

After reviewing Centerline’s requirements and the 3D CAD file, one of our Project Managers met with our Additive Engineers and decided the best solution was to section the file to 3D print in the Stereolithography (SLA) technology of high resolution, accuracy, easy of finish, paint, and assembly.

Step 1: Section the File for 3D Printing in the SLA process

Using the Magics Software by Materialise, our Additive Engineers were able to bring in the provided 3D CAD file and make customized part breaks that allowed for the best parts to build, finish, paint and assemble.


3D CAD file sectioned via Magics

Step 2: 3D Print Parts in SLA ClearVue SL 7870

After sectioning the files, we were able to orientate and add supports as needed, which allowed us to layout the part perfectly on our 20’’ x 20’’ build platforms. Parts were then built by a UV laser tracing the part images layer by layer, or “slicing” the part at .005’’ increments, over and over until the build was complete. Parts were ready for the next steps in 1 business day.

Step 3: Prepare Parts for Paint

Once the parts finished printing, they went through a standard cleanup which includes: support removal, wash and UV oven cure. Parts are then lightly sanded to remove any support remnants and sand blasted. This is the standard SLA part finish. To prep a part for painting (or as we call it, a Paint Ready Finish), the parts are sanded to remove all the build layer lines. For the clear part, we wet sand the part because the clear shows imperfections such as scratches that then require post-paint buffing. From there any non-clear parts are primed and ready for paint.

Step 4: Paint Parts

For paint, we had three total parts. By painting the parts separately, it improved the overall process and look of the parts because we did not have to hand mask the model multiple times. If you have ever painted your home, you know this is the toughest and most tedious part of painting and it never comes out perfect the first time. The base was painted gray. The keypad was painted white. Both received a light texture to hide any small imperfections. The main aorta part needed to be painted clear with a red tint, not an easy task, but using our in-house custom color match system, we were able to customize a red tint clear paint. This allowed the parts to be red, but also see-through when used for demonstrations. After drying the aorta part was buffed and all parts were ready for next step.

Step 5: Assemble Parts

After all the parts were painted, the parts needed to be re-assembled together into a finished model. When sectioning the parts in the Magics software, we were able to add tolerance for the superglue leaving room for the parts to assemble perfectly without a big mess of excess glue.

Final Painted Aorta ModelFinal Painted Aorta Model

Step 6: Create Custom Reusable Shipping Package

The last step was to ensure the parts held up from demo to demo when shipped across the world. To do this, we used the CAD file to custom cut foam inserts that would fit into a box. This allowed ease of packaging and confidence that the part would show up perfect every time.

In the end, Centerline’s model is what we do at TTH every day. Our Project Managers and Engineering Team work together with customers to fully understand requirements of the project and even offer new solutions from our diverse in-house services, to exceed customer expectations.

If you are interested in working on a project with our team at TTH please email us at sales@tth.com

TTH Presenting At the Advanced Design and Manufacturing Cleveland Expo

Posted on: February 28th, 2018 by Greg Cebular

Join us at ADM Cleveland 2018 in booth 602.

March 7-8, 2018 – Cleveland, OH

Use our promo code SPECIAL for a FREE expo pass!

 What is Advanced Design and Manufacturing (ADM) Cleveland?

ADM Cleveland will deliver the full spectrum of advanced design and manufacturing technology. Engineers and executives will get access to the latest solutions in the product development process with cutting-edge technologies, networking events, and educational opportunities.

Who Should Attend?

Engineers and executives who use or are interested in contract manufacturing services like 3D printing, additive manufacturing, injection molding and CNC machining in key industries such as automotive, medtech, aerospace, robotics, automation, plastics, packaging, and design technology. The conference will have interactive events and exhibits for people of all skill levels.

Will I See TTH There?

Of course!  We will be exhibiting at the conference at booth #602.  Be sure to stop by to see how we are using innovative contract manufacturing technologies that pair 3D printing and additive manufacturing with traditional injection molding and CNC machining. Also, we will have plenty of free giveaways.

In addition, Mark Horner, VP of Business Development, will be offering two presentations:

Capitalizing on the Changing Dynamics of 3D Printing Wednesday, March 7, 10:00-10: 45 am

This panel, also including Jack Heslin (3D Tech Talks), Dave Pierson (MAGNET) and Tracy Albers (Rapid Prototype and Manufacturing LLC), will explore how to leverage the shifts in smart manufacturing dynamics resulting from 3D printing, how to manage throughput when frequently changing out materials; and how to scale up efficiently without sacrificing quality, new materials, new possibilities, and new processes.

Next-Gen Materials for 3D Printing Wednesday, March 7, 3:15-4: 00 pm

Users know what 3D printing can do for them but now they are looking to save money on materials and usage costs while maintaining the “wow” factor of what they are creating. New 3D printers and technologies can create shapes that haven’t existed before, as well as lighter objects that don’t sacrifice strength. You will hear about applications that are solving industry issues by taking advantage of the Carbon Digital Light Synthesis process and materials to produce production quality components without traditional tooling or manufacturing processes.

TTH Presenting At the SAE Additive Manufacturing in Motion Symposium

Posted on: February 26th, 2018 by Greg Cebular

Vist us at the SAE 2018

Additive Manufacturing in Motion Symposium

March 13-14, 2018 – Cleveland, OH

Booth #102

 

What is the Additive Manufacturing in Motion Symposium?

This premier additive manufacturing event for the mobility industry is your chance to hear from technical experts in automobile and aerospace OEMs and Tier 1 and 2 suppliers, as well as experts from government and academia. You’ll learn about the needs, research, development activities and solutions that will help maximize the benefits of additive manufacturing.

Who Should Attend?

Manufacturing engineers, business development professionals, research engineers, design engineers, product engineers, system design engineers, researchers and academia who are looking from more information regarding the value, ROI, development and next generation of additive manufacturing technology.

Will I See TTH There?

Of course!  We will be exhibiting at the conference at booth #102.  Be sure to stop by to see firsthand the innovation and benefits of 3D printing and additive manufacturing.  Also, we will have plenty of free giveaways.

In addition, Mark Horner, VP of Business Development, will be presenting a session explaining applications that are solving industry issues by taking advantage of the Carbon Digital Light Synthesis process and materials to produce production quality components without traditional tooling or manufacturing processes.

TTH Sponsoring Partner For R3D@ Tri-C- Regional 3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing Conference

Posted on: September 19th, 2017 by The Technology House

Come visit TTH this Thursday & Friday at the annual R3D@TRI-C Cleveland 3D Printing Conference at the Huntington Convention Center on September 21-22, 2017.

We recommend coming for the opportunity to see and hear Jason Lopes from Carbon speak about his work in 3D printing and how Carbon is driving the future of additive manufacturing.

To purchase tickets to attend, click HERE.

 

R3D Conference

R3D @ Tri-C

Tri-C’s Workforce Community, Economic and Development Division is excited to host the third annual R3D @ Tri-C Conference at the Huntington Convention Center located in downtown Cleveland, Ohio. Beginning Thursday, September 21, 2017 with a networking event featuring a variety of hands-on workshops for everyone.  Friday, September 22, 2017 will be a day of informative sessions about the latest advances in additive manufacturing technologies, product innovation and case studies.  Along with a keynote presentation by Jason Lopes, 3D Printing Evangelist.

Date:

  • September 21-22, 2017

Who should attend?

  • Companies using additive manufacturing technology and those interested in getting started
  • Entrepreneurs interested in using additive manufacturing technologies
  • Educators who have a vested interest in current and future trends in additive manufacturing, including 7-12 grade educators and higher education faculty/staff

Location:

  • Huntington Convention Center, 1 St Clair Ave NE, Cleveland, OH 44114

Cost:

  • Individual registration $125
  • Educator discount and CEU’s available, please email R3D@tri-c.edu for more information

Keynote Address 2017

 

Jason Lopes

3D Printing Evangelist

Production Development Engineer, CARBON

Jason Lopes is the former lead systems engineer with Legacy Effect who helped create some of the biggest Hollywood blockbusters of all time utilizing Additive Manufacturing. Jason’s credits include Avatar, Terminator Genisys & Salvation, 2012, Thor, Iron Man 1,2, & 3, Cowboys & Aliens, Real Steel, Life of Pi, Captain America 2, Robocop and Pacific Rim; amongst other successful TV and film productions.  After leaving Legacy Effects Jason now helps companies, leverage Additive Manufacturing and educates all spaces of 3D Printing.

Jason is a strong advocate of 3D printing, which has proven to be an invaluable tool in his production workflow, along with 3D scanning, 3D design and 3D modeling. He has been operating numerous 3D printing technologies for a number of years to assist in the production of stunning visual effects and products and was awarded 3D Printing Industry’s Maker Of The Year 2017 the DINO (Distinguished Innovative Operators Award) in 2012 by the Additive Manufacturing Users Group.

Keynote Address Thursday

Thursday’s Keynote

Michael Block, Application Engineer, Stratasys

Mike has been with Stratasys for over 9 years and his roles included: project coordinator, technical support specialist and applications engineer. He is currently supporting the education sector for the Americas and assists with the application support emails for the Americas as well. Mike also lead a team of application engineers on the Comic Con Creature project that appeared on Jimmy Kimmel.

TTH is sponsoring the event along with the following:

Case Western Reserve University Engineering
MAGNET
America Makes

 

 
 
 

TTH Case Study:Design to Production with CJP

Posted on: February 5th, 2016 by The Technology House

Custom ColorJet Printing Sample

Colorjet Printing (CJP) is the preferred 3D printing method for creating full-color models.
That is why we used it for a recent Cleveland-themed magnet product line.  With the
amazing range of colors, and quick production time, it was the perfect fit for these parts.

The color and texture in these parts helps show the character and tradition
in some of the most popular landmarks in Cleveland.

To see the full scope of this project, click here to read the full case study.

3 Things about 3D Printing Bureaus You Should Know

Posted on: January 28th, 2016 by The Technology House

When you need to 3D print parts, you can either invest and utilize your own equipment, or order parts through a 3D printing bureau.  But, how do you know when it is best to leverage the 3D printing processes of a service provider compared to in-house capabilities?  Below are the top 3 reasons why customers have utilized a service bureau, like us.

3D Laser Printing

1.Expert Advice
Customers often come to us and say something like “We want the part to do this, but do not know what material or process will work best.” 3D Printing Service Bureaus have experienced project managers that can walk you through different processes and materials based on what you need for your design and project. They can offer the best options to get your part for your deadline whether it’s for a sales demo, marketing presentation or testing.

2. Less In-house Overhead
The costs involved with having your own machine can add up quickly. In addition to the cost of the equipment, there are also the costs of training/hiring employees, software upgrades, machine maintenance, and material & machine part purchases.  It may take years for a company to break even on their own machines.  This is why a lot of customers come to us.  They can simply send us the files to print to minimize risk and compensate for internal processes that don not exist.

3D Laser Printing Machines

3. Access to Advanced Materials and Processes
We have seen over the past few years that customers need prototypes to act as close as possible to the production piece.  This not only involves advanced materials, but also secondary processes like finish and paint.  Having both materials and processes under one roof allows one to efficiently stream line their timeline as well as utilize a “one stop shop” vendor.

But don’t take our word for it.  If you want to learn more about how a 3D Printing Service Bureau can help you, then feel free to contact us. Allow us to understand your concept and needs and champion it into actual parts by determining which of our processes will bring them to life in the most efficient way possible.

Download 3D Printing Handbook

Top 5 for 2015: We Posted Them, You Read Them

Posted on: December 29th, 2015 by The Technology House

As 2015 comes to an end, it is time for us to review what blog posts were most read in 2015.  The topics of these blogs ranged from 3D printed parts being used in a Formula One racing car to the benefits companies are seeing by doing production in the U.S.

Afraid you missed out on the more interesting posts?  No worries, below are the top 5 blogs in one place for you to riffle through.

 

5. SAE Racing Team Incorporates 3D Printing in Car Design

4. How Did Being an Early Adopter of 3D Printing Help Us?

3. What FDM Part Density is Best for You?

2. 5 Benefits of Reshoring Manufacturing

1. What’s the Difference Between Soft and Hard Tooling?

Request a Quote for you Additive Manufacturing Project

 

Can 3D Printing Show Realistic Details?

Posted on: December 14th, 2015 by The Technology House

One request we consistently hear is “How can you make my prototypes in color?”  or “How realistic can you make my parts look?” Previously most colors would be applied in paint as a secondary operation, or colors would be represented through photo renderings.

But now, TTH can 3D print parts in full color through  Color Jet 3D printing (CJP) . Realistic color models can be printed and delivered within days.  CJP through us will present your model in realistic colors.  The visualization of CJP will help you  gain attention and awareness in your model.

But don’t take our word for it, see for yourself:

Detailed 3D Printed models

Details in 3D printed model

Request a Quote for you next 3D printing project

 

SAE Racing Team Incorporates 3D Printing in Car Design

Posted on: November 30th, 2015 by The Technology House

This year, we are once again sponsoring the University of Akron’s SAE racing team.  We work with their team to 3D print and manufacture various parts that are used in the car.  We recently spoke with them to talk about this year’s plans and objectives.

20150801_12-19-34_8540_buck

Who is the team composed of?
Our team is composed of multiple tiers of members in a clever layout that allows for a system of checks and balances to ensure the quality of our design. In summary, this layout consists of two team captains who oversee both administrative and technical responsibilities. Beneath the team captains are our subsystem leaders, who oversee the design and production of different subsystems on the car, such as engine and suspension. Finally, we have general support, which is normally composed of newer members on the team. The general support members will help with all aspects of design and production of the car.

 

How many races do you plan to compete in this year?
Our team traditionally participates in multiple competitions around the world. Historically, this will include at least one competition in America, one in Canada, and one in Europe. This year, we plan on visiting Lincoln, Nebraska for our American competition, which will be followed by a competition in Germany. We also plan to end the season by going to Canada to participate in the Toronto Shootout.

 

What are your plans for this year’s car?
This year we plan to focus on improving the robustness of our design and looking into more advanced simulation/testing techniques to validate our designs before the ideas go into the production stage. This is an area where 3D printing can prove to be very useful with its rapid prototyping abilities. By improving our simulation/testing techniques we will be able to build a lighter car without sacrificing reliability.

 

How do you incorporate 3D printing in your design?
3D printing plays various roles in the design/production of our race car every year. 3D printed parts can serve roles that range from just testing fit and finish before actual production of the parts which involves lengthy machining processes, or they can even be finalized parts that will make their way on to the car.

 

What are the benefits you see by using 3D printing rather than traditional manufacturing methods?
One of the most useful attributes of 3D printing is that it allows us to produce complex geometries that would be next to impossible to machine from billet material. Some examples of these complex geometries include hollow parts, sharp corners, and small radii. By taking advantage of the benefits offered by 3D printing for production, we are able to build a lighter car without sacrificing our reliability.

20150801_18-32-58_1149_klein

Stay tuned, for we will write a follow up blog in May once their car is complete.  We wish them the best of luck, and look forward to working with them this year.  To learn more about their team, feel free to visit  their website.

What’s the Benefit of Metal-to-Plastic Conversion? Part II

Posted on: November 12th, 2015 by The Technology House

As the old saying goes, “It’s hard to teach an old dog new tricks”-Like converting metal parts to plastic.

We discussed in our last blog, when done properly, parts converted from metal-to-plastic benefit from:

-Cost reduction
-Improve functionality
-Design Freedom

But what industries benefit from metal-to-plastic part conversion? Three of the major industries we have helped are the automotive, aerospace, and medical industries.

The automotive and aerospace industries are converting parts to plastic in order to reduce vehicle weight, and to meet tougher federal emissions standards. The reason for the latter is that certain plastics are chemically and heat resistant.  These plastics can be utilized in the fuel and fluid handling systems.

A major reason we have seen the medical industry utilize metal-to-plastic conversion is for device ergonomics. Plastic products can be easier, such as molding a handle that is hard plastic, but the grip area is a soft rubber.  Another reason for metal-to-plastic conversion is that plastic has a lower thermal conductivity.  Therefore, plastic parts may not be cold to the touch, which allows the patient to be more comfortable when the product is in use.

We have helped a lot of customers over various industries with metal-to-plastic conversion. Contact us to consult with our team about the feasibility of converting your metal products to plastic.

Get a quote for your next Additive Manufacturing Project