USA & Canada
USA & Canada
J5 Dental Models

New color workflow with 3Shape Dental System®

Benjamin Huss
Benjamin Huss December 08, 2022
December 08, 2022

3D printing in full-color is what sets Stratasys PolyJet technology apart. In fact, color printing capabilities with Stratasys technology has been available to the Dental industry since 2018, when the J720 Dental Printer became available. Color printing has also been available on the J5 DentaJet, a compact multi-material printer intended specifically for dental labs looking to print dental parts with significantly less handling, which was introduced in 2021. However, only select customers took advantage of this this feature. 

3d printed teeth in full color

Why print dental models in color? 


A color models offers the dental technician information beyond the three-dimensional information on the geometry of the jaws but also the information on the oral condition. This data can only be captured by an intraoral scan as opposed to a classic analog impression with a plaster model. The scan captures the color of both teeth and gingival areas. Color-realistic 3D models can be used when manufacturing restorations where color plays a role. For example, it is possible to print tooth stumps in realistic colors and to optimally design the aesthetic appearance of crowns, inlays, onlays, veneers and bridges to match the required color of the patient’s surrounding teeth. 

Now, Stratasys has partnered with 3Shape, the market-leading developer and manufacturer of 3D scanners and CAD/CAM software solutions for the dental industry, to develop a new end-to-end color workflow for dental models.  

Color model scans are exported from the 3Shape model builder to Stratasys J5 DentaJet* printers, so customers have a standard workflow to get colors from patients and print color models.


The new seamless color workflow  


The "3Shape Color Workflow" provides an advantage for the dental practice and the dental lab. Especially when producing tooth-colored restorations; as color models enable the dental technician to produce highly aesthetic restorations in a repeatable and simple process. 

  • Hands off, end-to-end solution: Once the lab receives the scans, users can program their printer to automatically produce colored models without spending any additional hands-on time at the printer.  
  • Patient-specific models: This new workflow automatically matches colors with intraoral scans to produce the most realistic, patient-specific models.  
  • Improved aesthetics: The final implant should match the color of the patient’s teeth, but the stump of the tooth that the dentist works on is typically darker than the neighboring teeth. This workflow lets users print accurate models of patient teeth so they can see a realistic example of the specific patient’s mouth while they’re doing ceramic work.  
  • Better communication: Color models facilitate communication between dental labs, dentists, and patients, and make it easier for dental technicians to complete high-aesthetic restorations like crowns and bridges. 


Enable this workflow on your Stratasys J5 DentaJet printer 


It’s easy to enable and use this new color workflow. All you need to do is upgrade your 3Shape Dental System software to the 2022 release version that includes this streamlined workflow, for the full workflow, guide click on the button below.


Once the 3Shape software is upgraded, it’s easy to start using the new color workflow. The dentist will take an intraoral scan to prepare a crown or bridge, then send the scan to the dental lab with a prescription for the desired model. Based on the scan, the lab will print the full-color model and send it back to the dentist, who will use it to test the fit of a crown or bridge to the patient’s anatomy.   


Looking toward the future of digital dentistry.  


We’re thrilled that 3Shape shares Stratasys’ vision for full-color printing for better aesthetics and patient treatment. We look forward to continuing to partner with other industry leaders to improve digital workflows and create more advanced printing applications.  


*The 3Shape color workflow is also available on the J720 dental printer.

For the full workflow guide, click here