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Can 3D printing replace traditional mold manufacturing?

update:10-02-2020
abstract:

Mold is known as the "mother of industry". Its applicat […]

Mold is known as the "mother of industry". Its application can be traced back to ancient times. In the past decades, with the rolling forward of the wheel of scientific and technological revolution, the mold manufacturing industry has opened a new chapter, and the technology has made great contributions to the processing and manufacturing industry. Nowadays, although the traditional manufacturing industry around the world still takes mold as the main production force, the development of mold is impacted by 3D printing technology.

In recent years, with the development of industry 4.0, China's manufacturing industry has developed more and more rapidly from "manufacturing" to "intelligent manufacturing". 3D printing technology has been widely used in China's manufacturing industry. 3D printers can provide efficient and low-cost support for mold design and manufacturing. Even with the rapid development of 3D printing technology, in some areas, it has gradually begun to subvert the mold technology and form a direct competitive relationship with it.

It is understood that compared with 3D printing technology, traditional mold manufacturing needs more steps and processes, and the mold production cycle is longer. When mold manufacturers launch a new product, the new product needs to pass strict international standards and certification before it goes on the market, and the certification of many parts will take a long time. This will make the new products in a very unfavorable position in the time to seize the market. 3D printing injection mold is an efficient solution. Schneider Electric, a well-known manufacturer, does this by using 3D printing technology to make injection molds in their open laboratory.