How Lightweight Additive Materials Deliver Heavyweight ROI
There’s no denying that additive manufacturing is a cool and exciting industry, full of attention-grabbing use cases (like this fully 3D printed skateboard). But the benefits of this innovative technology extend far beyond its inherent hipness, offering plenty of added business value for a variety of applications.
Using lightweight #strongasmetal thermoplastic materials can save upfront costs and improve long-term ROI for many parts and products.
Lightweight Additive Materials Deliver Heavyweight ROI
When people think of additive materials, the main benefit that often comes to mind is weight reduction, but let’s take a look at the additional cost-saving advantages for several use cases:
- Fuel and energy consumption. Lightweighting an 18-wheeler not only increases the vehicle’s speed, it reduces fuel consumption. If you can save 5% on fuel costs for a fleet of 20 and multiply those savings over the span of a year, you’ll end up with a significantly higher ROI.
- Load reduction. When an object is suspended from a ceiling—for example, a dinosaur or airplane model at a museum—there’s typically an accompanying structure supporting it. The use of additive materials in the object itself can substantially reduce the mass of the structure, cutting down on overall material costs.
- Labor requirements. Using additive materials to make tools and machinery can reduce the labor needed for operation. Suddenly a 2-man lift becomes a 1-man lift, enabling better use of labor resources. Lightweighting tools and machinery can also help eliminate cumbersome and time-consuming safety considerations.
- Part cost. Did you know that one of the most common 3D printed products in the world is an orthodontic device? Additive materials are ideal for highly customized products because unlike subtractive manufacturing processes, you pay only for the material needed.
Invisalign prints 340,000 custom pieces a day—the perfect example of lightweight additive material at scale. They also use digitized workflows to optimize the use of additive manufacturing.
Next time you’re pitching a 3D-printed product to a client, make sure they know all the ways additive materials can reduce costs and improve their bottom line. The coolness factor will speak for itself!
Are you interested in Alchemy Industrial’s 3D printing services? Request a quote today!