Stratasys is shipping out its new Fortus 380mc 3D printer for carbon fiber-filled nylon prints as of last week. The new printer is a deep dive into the growing carbon fiber market that has been experience year on year growth of 8-12%. The new $70,000 dollar price tag is a massive downgrade from the previous $200-350,000 range the company previously offered. The industrial device offers a more diverse solution to the field of high-strength composites at a cheaper price.
The Stratasys chiefs imply that the push for carbon fiber was a response to demand from their own customers. “They’ve told us they want an affordable solution but in a reliable, industrial-quality system. So we’re now offering a more accessible system that’s based on our Fortus 380mc platform. Because the 380mc CFE is dedicated only to carbon-fiber-filled Nylon 12 and one other material, we’re able to currently offer it at the lowest price for any of our industrial printers.” said Stratasys Senior Vice President of Sales, Pat Carey.
The printer displays 0.010 in. (0.254 mm) minimum resolution when printing CF Nylon and a build volume of 355 x 305 x 305 mm (14 x 12 x 12 in.). It produces parts with an accuracy of roughly .127 mm (± .005 in.) or ± .0015 mm/mm (± .0015 in/in). It also offers water-soluble support removal making it great for creating intricate parts without having to worry about the manual removal of parts.
Carbon Fiber Printing
Carbon Fiber prints allow a range of various advantages and thus are achieving more popularity. They have short production runs and are great for producing high-strength still lightweight parts. Another reason companies may want them is that they are better for light tools and ergonomically superior.
The Carbon Fiber-filled Nylon 12 is a very lucrative material for a range of different industries. It provides light-weight frames for the automobile industry, sports equipment and even prosthetics. Much like a injection molded CF part, Stratasys Nylon 12CF is 35 percent chopped carbon fiber in terms of weight. It also displays the highest stiffness-to-weight ratio of any FDM or FFF 3D printed part.
Featured images courtesy of Stratasys.