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Product Development

Join industry leaders by investing in additive

  • Amazon
  • Disney
  • Microsoft
  • Sonos
  • Google

Rapid prototyping with 3D printing

Product Development is all about solving hard problems with the tools afforded to you. The combination of aggressive timelines and optimistic budgeting often means cutting more corners, taking fewer risks, and further compromising design intent to make your product a reality. 3D printing enables you to develop better products faster by providing a way to fabricate functional parts on demand. Whether it’s rapid prototyping to iteratively refine designs, or bridge tooling to quickly stand up production, 3D printing will help you develop better products faster.

Iterate Faster

Compress your iteration cycle by acquiring point-of-need fabrication. Cut extended waits for and reduce dependency on rapid prototyping services and deload your in-house fabrication. Get functional parts in hand in hours, quickly test, and iterate as fast as you can design. Lock designs faster with higher confidence than ever before.

Tool Up Smarter

3D print your tooling and workholding to get your production line up and running faster than ever before. Save skilled labor to work on revenue-generating parts by shifting tooling fabrication to a turnkey, automated workflow. Design and print highly optimized, geometrically tools and workholding to make your fabrication process more efficient.

Expand What’s Possible

3D print parts you couldn’t fabricate any other way. Produce end-use parts for customers that uniquely satisfy needs. From one-offs to low-volume production, embrace the geometric complexity and high strength that Markforged 3D printers offer.

Digital Forge for rapid prototyping

Brooks specializes in fragile products that require high degrees of precision. The ability to 3D print continuous carbon fiber gave Brooks new rapid prototyping capabilities — the ability to prototype nearly twice as fast — for nearly half the cost. Discover how Brooks and over 100 other industry leaders achieve impressive results with the Markforged platform.

We’re able to take prototype parts into a meeting and show what the finished parts may look like.”
– Jeff Cavins, Mechanical Engineer, Brooks Automation

Functional Rapid Prototyping with Centor

Centor manufactures custom doors for both commercial and residential applications. Before engaging on a product run, each door required a proof of concept prototype with in-house machinists creating low volume component runs. This product prototyping process was expensive, slow, and led to inconsistent quality.

Adding 3D printing into the workflow, allowed Centor to create an efficient rapid prototyping process that was 93% faster and reduced costs by 99%. Now, the 3D printer runs nearly 24/7, giving the product development process for Centor a huge boost and the ability to redirect resources to large production runs and let the rapid prototyping run smoothly, with a focus on design iteration.

Why invest in Markforged 3D printers?

  • Continuous fiber reinforcement and metal 3D printing enable you to fabricate the widest variety of functional parts
  • Best-in-class part accuracy on a wide variety of geometries ensure that prototypes and tools work the first time and every time after
  • Utilize Eiger, Markforged software platform, to maintain a digital inventory of versioned parts

High-value product development applications

  • Functional prototypes
  • Custom end-use parts
  • Prototype, first-run, and production tooling
  • Workholding

Many leading organizations use Markforged 3D printers for product development, with the list including recognizable consumer brands such as Amazon, Disney, Microsoft, Google, and Sonos.

In product development, 3D printing allows engineers to build a rapid iterative process of prototyping parts, evaluating performance, and redesign. Many product developers who turn to AM for rapid prototyping replace machined production parts with 3D-printed composites.

Compared to traditional manufacturing, 3D printing offers product developers several unique benefits:

  • With drastically shorter lead times, users can iterate on faster cadences and bring products to market faster

  • Lower fabrication costs

  • Higher confidence in the final, validated design after more testing iterations

  • Product development timelines will not be held up by unpredictable lead times or shipping delays from third parties

Organizations and teams can employ different 3D printers to fit their specific product development manufacturing needs.

Markforged desktop 3D printers can build aluminum-strength composites for prototyping and end-use, along with popular prototyping materials like PLA and TPU. Larger industrial 3D printers — like the X7 and the FX20 — are faster, allow for larger builds and higher throughput, and can tackle a wider variety of manufacturing challenges with smart features such as artificial intelligence (AI)-powered part inspection. The Metal X System is the most accessible way to 3D print prototypes and end-use parts that must be made out of metal.

For product developers, 3D printing is ideal for a range of prototyping and end-use applications

  • Quickly prototyping and validating a final part under time constraints and firm deadlines

  • Validating and iterating parts that require multiple testing cycles

  • Saving time and money by replacing expensive machined parts with long lead times

While the ideal 3D printing materials depend on the specific product development application, popular materials used include Onyx and PLA.

Onyx is a strong and stiff material which can be used for high-performance functional prototypes and validated end-use parts. It can be reinforced with continuous carbon fibers for additional strength and additional material properties, and is a faster and cheaper alternative to machined aluminum.

PLA is an inexpensive prototyping material often used for low-cost iterations with lower performance requirements. For metal 3D printing, 17-4PH Stainless Steel is a common material used at every stage of design cycles.

Fabricating prototypes and validated designs with 3D printing offers product developers cost and lead time benefits. Additionally, 3D printing software features can further streamline product development processes.

  • With simulation software, product developers can validate performance of parts before fabrication. This reduces the need for both printing and testing prototypes, saving time and money

  • Automated part inspection uses artificial intelligence (AI) to validate quality control testing and reporting

Product developers that adopt an additive manufacturing-heavy approach for product development cycles significantly cut down lead times and prototype fabrication costs.

  • Caldwell Manufacturing uses the Metal X system to print prototypes for parts that would otherwise need to be cast out of zinc or stainless steel. These prototypes would cost from $300 up to $5,000 with lead times of up to eight weeks — with the Metal X, prototypes can be made for $30 in three days.

Centor switched to Markforged composite 3D printers to print integrated door prototypes. With in-house machinists, each prototype cost $800 and took 156 hours to fabricate. 3D printing brought the cost of each prototype down to only $10, with 12-hour lead times.

The reliability of Markforged printers and the strength of parts printed makes the Digital Forge ideal for a wide range of product development applications. Even a Desktop Series printer can produce parts strong enough to replace machined metal prototypes and end-use parts.

  • Markforged printers have a reputation for reliability. They can be run almost constantly, result in very few print failures, and have a low need for maintenance.

  • Proprietary continuous fiber reinforcement (CFR) lets product developers quickly and easily print metal-strength composite prototypes, eliminating the need for machined aluminum

  • Versatility lets product developers employ a variety of prototyping and production materials on the same printer

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