3D Printing Services

3D printing us used across all kinds of industries for all kinds of reasons. At J&L, we provide six kinds of 3D printing services to help manufactures prototype, test, invent, implement, and more. Take a look at the ways we can use 3D printing to increase the speed, efficiency, repeatability, and accuracy of your production. 

Inspection Fixtures 

Most manufactured products go through a CMM inspection (coordinate measuring machine) as part of a company’s quality assurance procedure. During this process, a product or object must be set in a position for the machine to test. While some companies place the product in whatever position is most convenient, others take their testing a step further and use inspection fixtures to situate the product in the exact position it would be in during its use. This is the most reliable form of testing. 

Inspection fixtures can be standard blocks for basic products without an unusual shape, but they can also be 3D printed into more complicated designs that will hold your product in a way that replicates how it will be used. 3D printed inspection fixtures both speed up inspection times (increasing efficiency) and also provide better quality control for your customers. Ultimately, by investing in 3D printed inspection fixtures you can save time and money in your production process.

Prototyping

Reliable Prototyping Materials - Stereolithography (SLA)

It’s a big word that sounds something like a creature you’d find in the Mesozoic era, but Stereolithography (SLA) is actually reliable, widely used rapid prototyping technology.

How Stereolithography Works

The rapid prototype process begins with a vat of liquid photopolymer. Yup. Your 3D printed prototype begins as a (COLOR) liquid inside the 3D printer. The magic that forms the prototype is actually a UV (ultra-violet) laser that cuts out the shape of the prototype as determined by the inputted computer aided design (CAD). The laser hardens the outer layer of the prototype, and a razer follows it, making sure the hardened material follows the CAD pattern. The machine continues to harden and refine the prototype until the pattern is complete, the remaining liquid photopolymer drains, and viola -- your prototype is born!

Well - almost. Most of the time the “finished” product actually needs some final touches from the finishing department, who make sure your prototype resembles a real finished product as closely as possible.

Jigs 

Like fixtures, jigs are also responsible for holding a part or product in place. However, instead of being used in the inspection process, jigs secure a part in a fixed position so machines can reliably drill and cut at the right, consistent locations. 

The benefits of 3D printed jigs are similar to that of 3D printed inspection fixtures. By 3D printing your jig, you can create jigs that are custom designed to fit your part exactly. In doing so, you can increase consistency when your machine is cutting or drilling on the part. This is advantageous for quality assurance and repeatability on the production line. 

Rapid Prototyping 

During product development, having a good prototype can help you pitch new ideas, generate excitement, and increase buy-in from leadership or investors. Additionally, prototypes are used to make early design revisions and catch potential flaws before products are mass produced. 

Rapid prototyping is the process of quickly generating 3D printed prototypes that can be painted to resemble a finished product. This is one of the most popular 3D printing services we offer at J&L Dimensional. 

Your innovative company comes up with new ideas at a fast-paced rate. Now, you need a partner with rapid prototyping services to create scale product models that make your ideas tangible. J&L Dimensional has evolved into a rapid prototyping company with impressive equipment, a devoted team, and a full-scale list of other 3D Printing Services that can help your business thrive. 

Why Companies Love the Advantages of Rapid Prototyping 

Like thousands of high-profile companies, well known names like Ford and Fender use rapid prototyping before sending new product ideas through to production. There are many reasons why exploring rapid prototyping services is a good idea, but these four are practically universal. 

Product Planning & Visualization

Drawings are helpful during the first iteration of developing a new product, but after those initial sketches, engineers, product designers, and employers like to see something in 3D. Something that closely resembles the final product. Something they can touch. Rapid prototyping fulfills that need and gives product designers the opportunity to spot some preventable flaws before placing a full production order. 

Proof of Concept and Presentations 

When presenting new ideas to C-levels and investors, there’s nothing better than showing up with a strong prototype. This allows everyone in the pitch room to accurately visualize the product that’s being described before making an investment decision, eliminating uncertainty that may cause them to back away instead of moving forward. 

Speed 

Like the name suggests, rapid prototyping is fast. Once we receive a CAD file, we can create your prototype within a speedy turnaround time.

Cost 

Because prototyping allows product designers to spot and fix early design flaws, rapid prototyping is a leading way for businesses to save money and use their funds wisely during product development and R&D. The cost of developing a prototype with 3D printing ranges depending on the need, but we can provide customized quotes upon request

Props 

When you think of theater and film, 3D printing probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. But yes, 3D printed probs have infiltrated the entertainment industry. Costumes, set design, and all kind of other props have been 3D printed for famous films. With a big imagination and a design for the 3D printer to follow, almost anything can be developed in the 3D printing workshop. 

Wax Investment Casting Patterns 

When trying to create accurate casts for smaller parts, there’s no better process than wax investment casting. Wax investment casting is ideal for small, intricate parts that need specific, accurate outcomes.

Creating Wax Investment Casts

In the wax investment casting process, someone will coat a wax investment casting pattern with a ceramic metal. Many different metals are used on wax investment casting patterns such as aluminum, brass, and stainless steel alloys. When the metal hardens, it takes the shape of the pattern and creates the casting.

In short, the process goes like this:

- You create a design for your new part
- We print a replica of the part in wax
- The wax replica is dipped in a metal, which hardens to create a shell around it
- The wax is melted out, leaving you with a precise mold
- You're now able to use the mold to create the actual part.

3D Printers at J&L Dimensional

J&L is home to two commercial 3D printers that allow us to fulfill our 3D printing jobs quickly and professionally. Each printer uses a different material and is capable of fulfilling different 3D printing tasks.

3D Systems Projet MJP 2500 IC

Material used: Stereolithography (SLA)

Peel Mechanism: Sliding Peel Process with wiper

Resin Fill System: Automated

Build Volume:   145 x 145 x 175 mm (5.7 x 5.7 x 6.9 in)

Layer thickness: 25, 50, 100 microns (0.001, 0.002, 0.004 inches)

Layer Spot Size: 140 microns (0.0055 inches)

Uses: Inspection Fixtures, Inspection Templates, Jigs, Prototypes, and Props.

Formlabs Form 2 SLA

logo

Material used: Castable Wax

Resin Fill System: Automated

Build Volume:   294 x 210 x 142 mm (11.6 x 8.3 x 5.6 in)

Layer thickness: 42 microns (0.0017 in)

Uses: Wax Investment Casting Patterns