An Interview with Zehavit Reisin, VP, Head of Rapid Prototyping
Zehavit, so summarize for us what is the new Nylon12 Carbon Fiber material?
Well, Sam, this is our first high performance FDM composite material containing 35% chopped carbon fiber by weight. This gives the material an exceptionally high strength-to-weight ratio that opens up new possibilities for functional prototyping, tooling and custom manufacturing.
SG: Can you give us a typical industry use case example?
ZR: So, a company manufacturing aircraft rotor blade components would start by 3D printing their designs in a standard plastic material on our FDM 3D printers. But to test the prototypes in high-performance conditions, they would leave the automated 3D printing environment behind and turn instead to metal tooling and milling. This adds time, money and inconvenience to the entire product development cycle. With 3D printed Nylon 12CF material, you can create an exceptionally strong, light 3D printed blade prototype and continue testing it in a range of real-world conditions.
SG: So what business benefits does this impart?
ZR: In terms of prototyping time alone, by eliminating the metal tooling you’re looking at a reduction from many months to just a few weeks, which, depending on your industry and scale, could translate from hundreds of thousands to many millions of dollars in development costs.
SG: What about the pure design advantages?
ZR: One of our customers, Utah Trikes, who manufacture custom trikes have also stressed this point. Whereas in the past, designers would have to ‘limit’ their creativity to fit the geometric constraints of the aluminum or metal shaping tools or worry about how they’d lay up the carbon fiber onto the molds, this is now no longer the case.
SG: So designers and manufacturers can create parts they wouldn’t have been able to make previously? That’s huge!
ZR: That’s exactly right. And that alone is a game changer for companies looking to disrupt the market and create the next generation of products that out-perform their competition.
SG: So, better designs and a more cost-efficient product development cycle. Is that the bottom line?
ZR: Yes indeed.
SG: And how does it compare to other similar solutions?
ZR: The material’s ultimate tensile strength of almost 11,000 psi on the xz axis, together with the fast build speed, large-tray size and excellent z-strength out-performs all other similar Nylon 12CF 3D printed solutions on the market today.
SG: Thank you for your time today Zehavit.
ZR: A pleasure.
The Nylon12CF material is available for order today on Fortus450mc production systems.