Inspection fixtures fall into two main categories—CMM fixtures and go/no-go gauges. Each fulfills a critical part of the manufacturing process: ensuring that fabricated parts hit the tolerances of the designs they were fabricated from. Conventionally, these fixtures are either constructed with modular kits or custom CNC machined. Modular fixturing is cheap, but difficult to assemble and not quickly swappable. CNC fixturing works well once it’s fabricated, but the complex geometry of many inspected end parts (especially CNC machined or cast-and-machined) adds significant cost to the fixture manufacturing process.
3D Printed inspection fixtures are precise and conformal. Whether it’s a CMM fixture or a go/no-go gauge, the geometric complexity that 3D printing naturally affords allows you to quickly design and optimize fixtures for your part. Markforged’s continuous fiber reinforcement makes these fixtures long lasting and strong enough to fixture heavy parts for inspection. Printed fixtures are easy to set up, take down, and store, meaning that you can have custom fixtures readily available for all parts that you need to inspect.