Frequently Asked Questions



Below are our frequently asked questions. 
If you do not see your question, please contact us

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What are some of the advantages of Additive Manufacturing?

Cost and Time Savings – Additive manufacturing swiftly creates product prototypes – an increasingly critical function that significantly reduces the traditional trial-and-error process – so new products can enter the market more quickly. Likewise, it can promptly create unique or specialized metal products that can replace worn or broken industrial parts. That means companies can avoid costly shut downs and drastically compress the time it takes to machine a replacement part. With additive manufacturing, once a CAD drawing is created the replacement part can be printed. Storage of bulky patterns and tooling is virtually eliminated.

Environmental Impact – Additive Manufacturing produces less waste – Since the process involves adding layers of material to create a part or product vrs subtracting material there is much less waste to be recycled using additive manufacturing processes.

Are there environmental benefits to using Additive Manufacturing?

Yes! In traditional manufacturing, objects are created in a subtractive manner as metals are trimmed and shaped to fit together properly. This process creates substantial waste that can be harmful to the environment. Additive manufacturing is a very energy efficient and environmentally friendly manufacturing option.

What are the benefits to having Additive Manufacturing and Subtractive Manufacturing under the same roof?

There are many components, parts and proto-types that can be made using the additive manufacturing process, however there are certain situations that are best served using traditional manufacturing methods, including “touch-up’s” or “tweek’s” of printed parts that can only be done using traditional precision machining process’s. This is generally found within the corporate arena such as high tech components, aeronautics, military, automotive or any other situation that would require more of a high precision “fit”. This is not generally required when dealing with more cosmetic components such as jewelry, art, knick-knacks, or other such objects/items that are more cosmetic than functional. 3DX Industries can handle either situation which is a great benefit to our customers as we are truly a one-stop-shop for their manufacturing needs.

Can you outline the process for printing a 3D metal part using your M-Flex System?
  • The process begins with a CAD file provided by you or created by us.
  • The M-Flex’s built-in software slices the CAD file into very thin layers (0.004 – 0.006 inch) (0.1 –0.15 mm).
  • The machine spreads a layer of powdered metal in the build box.
  • A printhead moves across the layer, depositing liquid binder according to the design for that layer.
  • The layer dries and the build box is lowered slightly.
  • A new layer of powdered material is spread, repeating this process until all layers have been completed.
  • The build box now contains a fully printed and bound part, surrounded by loose powder (which acts as a support). The part is considered in a “green state” at this point and very fragile.
  • The printed part is depowdered and goes into a furnace for sintering, which burns out the binder and fuses the metal molecules making a hardened part, approximately 60% dense.
  • Metal parts are now strong and can be handled but still contain tiny internal gaps. Therefore, infiltration (a second thermal process) is required to bring parts up to full density. The M-Flex Materialization Systems typically utilize a bronze infiltrant.

Thermally-processed metal parts are near 100% density and can be used functionally – not only as prototypes. A variety of finishing options are available, including protective coats and plating.

What types of materials are you able to print in?

Our M-Flex 3D Metal Printing System is able to print in stainless steel, bronze, tungsten and glass at this time. New materials are being studied and tested to create even more versatility. Keep an eye on our website for updates.

Our Z-Corp 3D Composite printer prints with high performance composites allowing us to create a variety of products and prototypes out of plastics. Please call us for specifics on the materials we can use for printing.

Can you make jewelry and non-industrial components

Absolutely! In fact with our M-Flex 3D Metal printing system we can create almost anything you can think of that will fit in your hand out of metal or plastic. The ability to generate intricate designs for jewellery, knick-knacks, ornaments etc. is a speciality of our 3D Metal printer. It is versatile enough to print a beautiful pendant or meet the high structural demands of a high speed turbine to be used in an energy generation project. From high end industrial uses to beautiful works of art, we are excited to tackle your project.

What types of equipment do you have at the facility?

For additive manufacturing we have a state of the art M-Flex 3D Metal Printing System, from The ExOne Company, along with a Z-Corp Composite Printer both of which are housed within our environmentally controlled printing room. Our printing room also includes a furnace and curing oven as well as numerous pieces of auxiliary equipment to support the M-Flex and Z-Corp printers.

Our precision machining department includes high speed machining centers from Fanuc’s ROBODRILL line all the way up to Cincinnati Milacron’s large capacity Vertical milling center with an envelope size of 80x30x32. In total we have 13 CNC Machines, several with 4th support pieces to aid in the production process.

3DX is a complete 3D Metal Printing, Composite Printing and Precision Component Manufacturer. If you need something built, please contact us to see if we can help you out.

Do you do factory tours?

We do not offer tours to the public at this time. If you are with an educational institution and would like to have a tour of our facility please contact us to discuss.