Jun 21, 2016 | By Benedict

Maher Soft, a 3D printer manufacturer based in Mumbai, India, has used its Indie Desktop 3D Printer to create a 1.3m scale model of a 115m heavy transport vehicle. The 3D printed model was commissioned by a leading transport services company, which will use the miniature in client presentations.

Could this be the future of the sales pitch? While many companies retain faith in the humble PowerPoint presentation, others, particularly those offering large-scale products or services, are seizing the additive manufacturing initiative and creating 3D printed props—tangible objects which can be physically handed over to potential clients and customers. Although this strategy might not make sense for, say, a tech startup which can present a prototype of its new cellphone or smartwatch, it does make sense for architects, car manufacturers, and other businesses offering products and services which can’t be squeezed through the office door.

Maher Soft, a 3D printer manufacturer based in Mumbai, India, was recently commissioned to make a 3D printed prop of exactly this kind. According to the young startup, a leading transport services company approached the 3D printing experts with the idea of creating a scale model of one of its own products: a gigantic, 115-meter-long heavy transport vehicle used to carry heavy goods. By obtaining a detailed and accurate scale model of their vehicle, the company, which operates in the petroleum and refinery sector, would be able to give potential clients the closest possible look at its product without actually taking them to the warehouse.

The 3D printing project undertaken by Maher Soft was a challenging one, despite the relatively small (1.3m) size of the 3D printed object. The project took around three weeks to complete, which included 3-4 days of model fixing and error checking, 140 hours of 3D printing, and a week of post-processing. The scale model consisted of 14 main 3D printed pieces, all of which measured 10-15cm, and a further 120 smaller pieces which included the vehicle’s wheels, lever, and base. The post-processing stage was apparently particularly challenging for the 3D printing company, which had to minimize any evidence of a seam line between glued-together parts.

Although many kinds of 3D printer could be used to create scale models for businesses, the machine used to make the scale model of the heavy transport vehicle—Maher Soft’s own Indie Desktop 3D Printer—will soon be the subject of an Indiegogo campaign, in which Early Bird backers can secure the printer for $450. The company indicates that the printer will feature a large print volume, enclosed heated chamber, filament monitor, and other useful features.



Posted in 3D Printing Application



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