There seems to be a secret plan by EOS and 3YOURMIND to 3D print a great deal more items than is done today.
EOS, as you may know, is one of the leading manufacturers of powder-bed 3D printing gear. Their equipment line includes both metal and plastic options, which are used worldwide to produce all manner of interesting 3D printed parts.
3YOURMIND is lesser known, but also interesting. They produce a platform on which 3D print jobs can be managed. It would be used by 3D print services, for example, to control workflows. They also produce an “enterprise” platform in which a company can efficiently interact with multiple 3D print services in an effort to obtain the best deals.
But 3YOURMIND has one more very interesting product, something they call the “AM Part Identifier”. What does it do? This:
Automatically scan inventories for technologically viable and economically profitable AM parts.
Evidently this tool leverages 3YOURMIND’s part costing and geometry analysis software from their other tools to perform large-scale inventory analyses.
What is the purpose of this? It’s because many manufacturers have truly gigantic inventories of parts, many of which have been produced in quantities as spare parts, which anticipate demand due to failures. However, this means the manufacturers are carrying potentially massive inventories of spare parts.
Ideally they would want to reduce the cost of holding all this replacement inventory, and one way to do that would be to simply 3D print replacement parts on demand.
But it’s not that simple: not all parts can be 3D printed successfully, particularly in industries where parts must maintain stringent certifications.
The problem is that companies may not know which parts are eligible for 3D print on demand treatment. That’s where AM Part Identifier comes in: it can relatively quickly zoom through a digital inventory of 3D CAD models and rapidly determine if a given part is feasible for 3D printing.
They analyze the structure of the part to see if its geometry is feasibly 3D printed in the correct materials, estimate the cost of post processing, the cost of materials and production. The parts are given a grade from which the manufacturer can decide whether to proceed.
For some manufacturers this process could be a huge jackpot of savings, if substantial numbers of inventoried parts are tagged.
It could result in the stoppage of much spare parts production, and a potentially large increase in 3D printing operations, 3D printer sales and usage of 3D printing materials.
This is all great stuff, but you might wonder why I write that this is a secret plan by EOS and 3YOURMIND. I haven’t mentioned EOS yet.
Here’s the clue: it turns out that one of the big investors in 3YOURMIND is from EOS. This makes an enormous amount of sense: 3YOURMIND’s service could drive a large amount of new sales and services towards EOS.
But regardless of which companies are benefiting, the big beneficiaries will be all the manufacturers who can now significantly reduce their inventory expenses with this service.