Building metal prototypes used to be a lot more complicated due to traditional manual methods that often resulted in variations and expensive mistakes. These days, game-changing technologies such as direct metal laser sintering (DMLS) have transformed the field. DMLS is a 3D printing technology that swiftly, precisely, and cost-effectively produces functional prototypes. Metal 3D printing is particularly effective for parts with intricate geometries and can be adapted for low-volume part production as long as you choose a competent rapid prototyping service provider.
DMLS 3D printing continues to change the prototyping game, making it a suitable alternative to other manufacturing methods for building metal parts and prototypes. Today, the technology has greater potential for more applications as it evolves, becomes more understood, and improves.
Understanding metal 3D printing
Metal 3D printing for rapid prototyping follows a similar principle to selective laser sintering (SLS), another additive manufacturing technology. But this time, it builds objects from select metal materials layer by layer. In DMLS 3D printing, metal powders are sintered together by a high-powered laser in a build chamber. This way, it can craft complex shapes without support structures. Additionally, it provides a cost-effective way to build complex features than other manufacturing methods.
Building stronger parts
DMLS 3D printing uses powdered metals, which have dynamic and strong mechanical properties. That means you can produce production-grade prototypes, and the process can be configured for building end-use components.
Increasing production efficiency
Metal 3D printing adds value to rapid prototyping as it defies conventional design-for-manufacturing norms. So, designs that traditionally would have been constructed in assemblies can now be crafted in one piece, allowing you to save time and effort.
3D-printed metal parts won’t require extensive post-processing, like tooling. This helps shorten manufacturing lead times from several weeks to only a few days, enabling speed to market and faster innovation.
Learn more about this game-changing way to build prototypes.
Does your next project involve metal parts? Our experts at HLH Proto are ready to help! Share your project details with us, and we’ll tell you how our metal 3D printing can fulfill your rapid prototyping needs.