Full-color 3D printing technology overview

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Creating multi-color plastic parts is a complex process. In conventional manufacturing, colored parts are created either by a multi-step molding process (e.g., overmolding) or via the post-processing of unicolor parts (e.g., screen printing or manual coloring).
Additive manufacturing has long been limited to unicolor parts. With the introduction of new technologies, such as Multi Jet Fusion or full-color Polyjet, multi-color or full-color parts (i.e., parts with texture and color gradients) became possible. Very recently, color 3D printing became a hot topic in 3D printing when multiple new technologies hit the market, increasing both quality and efficiency.
In this article, we will introduce multiple aspects of full-color 3D printing.

The surface quality of 3D printed parts

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The surface properties of industrial 3D printing technologies vary greatly. We provide a short overview for the most important technologies, incl. Ra and Rz values by technology, post processing methods and sample images.

The properties of 3D printed plastic parts

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This article provides an overview over the general properties from parts produced with industrial 3D printers. Learn about the surface properties, mechanic strength, tolerances and other characteristics of additive manufactured plastic parts.

HP Jet Fusion vs. Laser Sintering

When HP announced the key features of their new 3D printer ‘Multi Jet Fusion 4200’ in 2014, they promised it would introduce a new kind of additive technology, which would print parts that were more accurate and stronger than those produced by FDM and laser sintering printers – and at ten times the speed. Now that the HP Multi Jet Fusion 4200 has been on the market for a few months, it is time to take an in-depth look at the most important characteristics of both technologies and most importantly, at the quality of the 3D printed parts that they are capable of producing.