When to 3D Print Parts with Metal or Strong Composites
Markforged gives you a wide variety of choices including metal and composites – but which is best for your application?
Markforged composite printers uniquely embed continuous reinforcing fibers – carbon, fiberglass, or Kevlar® – to print parts up to 23 times tougher than ABS. Other Markforged printers can create stainless steel parts.
Each printing technology leverages the advantages of additive manufacturing to create parts suited for different parts in the manufacturing process. By understanding their strengths, you can maximize the utility of high strength 3D printing in your operation.
To understand more about when to use metal or composites, download our white paper on “Address More Manufacturing Challenges with Composite and Metal 3D Printing” and get our info-graphic.
While all parts require design for manufacturing, metal 3D printing allows you to print part geometries
that are expensive or impossible to machine. Printed metal parts can be post processed with conventional
metal fabrication processes like tapping, polishing, or machining. However, with the freedom to
design intricate metal parts comes a problem — the more complex the part, the less likely standard
workholding can hold it.
Composite 3D printers enable fabricators to manufacture high-strength conformal workholding without
consuming machine bandwidth. With them, you can produce low-cost tooling and fixturing capable of
handling high loads and machining fluids. For low-volume metal parts, printing both the metal part and the
high-strength composite fixture will simplify your workholding design process while ensuring a perfect fit.