May 20, 2015 | By Simon

Of all of the technological advancements that we’ve seen with various forms of additive manufacturing, one of the most exciting developments has been in the material arena; specifically, the ability to print ready-to-use parts quickly and efficiently on desktops without the need for industrial equipment costing hundreds of thousands of dollars.

For those that need ready-to-use, durable parts at the ready, MarkForged has easily been the first 3D printer manufacturer that comes up in conversations - and for good reason: it’s the world’s first 3D printer designed to print carbon fiber parts that have a higher strength-to-weight ratio than 6061-T6 Aluminum.  

The company’s MarkOne 3D Printer (as well as their proprietary high strength, reinforced materials) has been used to create everything from ready-to-ride bicycle parts to even components that have been used on race cars.  

MarkForged has recently released new data that further highlights the capabilities of their Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) and Continuous Filament Fabrication (CFF) materials.  These materials include nylon, carbon fiber, Kevlar® and fiberglass.   

Among other findings through third-party testing, the company has discovered that their carbon fiber continuous filament is actually 30 times stronger and 30 times stiffer than ABS.  Previously, the company had stated that it was only 5 times stronger and 20 times stiffer - a remarkably different measurement.  Additionally, the material is also said to have a higher strength-to-weight ratio than 6061-T6 aluminum than previously reported.  

“The MarkForged Mark One continues to break new ground as the first 3D printer capable of embedding continuous strand carbon fiber, Kevlar®, and fiberglass into high quality Nylon resulting in incredibly strong parts,” said the company’s updated website.

“The choice of reinforcement lets you select from best strength-to-weight, the best strength with abrasion resistance and the best strength-to-cost with the speed of iteration and learning delivered by 3D printing throughout your product-development cycle.”   

While the MarkOne composite printer - which starts at $5,499 - is certainly for a specific type of designer or engineer, it’s rare ability to craft high-strength parts puts it in a league - even after a year of new 3D printers flooding the market on a weekly basis.  Among others who see the potential for the technology include Cody Wilson of Defense Distributed.  Earlier this year, it was revealed that Wilson attempted to purchase a MarkOne for the production of firearms - however the company politely declined the opportunity to due business due to the controversy surrounding 3D printed firearms.  

The updated data sheet can be downloaded and read in-full over at MarkForged.  



Posted in 3D Printing Materials


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