Avi Cohen, Director of Global Dental at Stratasys, describes how WDM technology, in the partial denture wax-up, and PolyJet 3D printing technology, used in the jaw model, are complementary in digital dentistry.
Stratasys’ Director of Global Dental, Avi Cohen, sat down with the Stratasys Blog to discuss the addition of two new Wax Deposition Modeling (WDM) 3D Printers to the company’s Dental 3D Printer family, enabling dental labs to increase the production of restoration wax-ups with easy-to-use workflow and low cost-per-wax-up.
Q: Why are WDM 3D printers joining the Stratasys lineup?
A: The WDM-based CrownWorx and FrameWorx 3D printers are aiming to refine and modernize the generations-old craft of creating dental crowns, bridges and partial dentures. This is an exciting step forward for the Stratasys dental suite of 3D Printers. The WDM 3D Printers are joining the Objet Eden260V DentalAdvantage and the Objet30 OrthoDesk to serve dental labs of all sizes.
This full contour bridge casting was created on a Stratasys CrownWorx 3D printer.
Q: What does WDM 3D printing add to digital dentistry?
A: Simply put: accuracy, quality and real wax-like materials. The Stratasys CrownWorx and FrameWorx 3D Printers are ideal for creating the “cast pattern” for crowns, bridges – copings or full contour – as well as partial dentures. The model made from the Stratasys wax-like material, TrueCast, is then turned into a mold. The CrownWorx tray can create 40 pieces of crowns, copings, bridges, or full contour bridges over the course of a day. The FrameWorx 3D Printer does high-speed digital wax-ups for partial dentures. The FrameWorx has fantastic resolution – 5,000 dpi; this accuracy means the models it produces can be used as final models before casting, as any lab’s second shift.
When the model is put into gypsum that is then heated, the wax melts or evaporates. Metal is then poured into the mold to create the tooth replacement.
The partial denture wax-up model made on a Stratasys FrameWorx 3D printer is fitted into a model created on an Objet Eden260V Dental Advantage3D Printer, also from Stratasys.
Q: Can you describe how crowns, bridges and partials were made before digital dentistry began to make its mark?
A: Making replacements for lost or damaged teeth combines art and science. Crowns, bridges and “partials” have been around for decades. Though the materials have changed over time, the process for creating them is still painstaking and time-consuming. Starting with impression molds, the missing or damaged teeth are then modeled in acrylic. The crowns or bridges are fitted to specifications using pliable wax, by hand, and then cast in metal or ceramic as a final product.
The Stratasys CrownWorx and FrameWorx 3D Printers are the debut of Stratasys’ WDM (wax deposition modeling) technology.
Q: How do the CrownWorx and FrameWorx preserve the look and feel of the familiar models?
A: CrownWorx and FrameWorx desktop 3D printers capture the essence of the traditional process. The dental lab owners will find that they have a familiar material to work with - how the wax-like material feels, even how it smells!
Q: When will the WDM 3D Printers have their debut?
A: The CrownWorx and FrameWorx will be introduced on May 17 at the LAB DAY West show in Garden Grove, California. We’ll also have 3D Printers from the Objet Eden family of 3D Printers. Come see us at Booth B8!