PLASTEC East Expo and 3D Printing

By on April 26th, 2019 in Event

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 [Image:  Flickr ]
[Image: Flickr ]

Charles Goulding and Rafaella July of R&D Tax Savers look forward to the upcoming PLASTEC East event and the 3D printing to be on display there.

PLASTEC East is the East Coast’s leading annual trade show for plastics innovations. This year it will be held at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center on June 11th-13th. PLASTEC East is one of six shows in the Advanced Design & Manufacturing Expo. The adjoining shows include MD&M East, EastPack, Atlantic Design & Manufacturing, ATX East, and Quality Expo.

Compatible industries like automation, packaging, molding, and 3D printing join together to create more interest and gather more visitors at large expo shows like these. The advantage for attendees is that they get to be exposed to other industry groups where there are more synergies than might be anticipated.

3D printing is particularly relevant at the show as it is at the center of today’s design community. Plastic has predominantly been the most widely used 3D printing material category to date. Automation is also a core technology in the plastics industry, specifically in relation to the injection molding process and for the role of 3D printing in Industry 4.0. Research and development is a key part of these industries’ innovation, namely 3D printing. The industry participants at PLASTEC East may benefit from receiving R&D tax credits.

The Research & Development Tax Credit

Enacted in 1981, the now permanent Federal Research and Development (R&D) Tax Credit allows a credit that typically ranges from 4%-7% of eligible spending for new and improved products and processes. Qualified research must meet the following four criteria:

  • Must be technological in nature

  • Must be a component of the taxpayer’s business

  • Must represent R&D in the experimental sense and generally includes all such costs related to the development or improvement of a product or process

  • Must eliminate uncertainty through a process of experimentation that considers one or more alternatives

Eligible costs include U.S. employee wages, cost of supplies consumed in the R&D process, cost of pre-production testing, U.S. contract research expenses, and certain costs associated with developing a patent.

On December 18, 2015, President Obama signed the PATH Act, making the R&D Tax Credit permanent. Beginning in 2016, the R&D credit can be used to offset Alternative Minimum tax for companies with revenue below $50MM and for the first time, pre-profitable and pre-revenue startup businesses can obtain up to $250,000 per year in payroll taxes and cash rebates.

Attendees to Look Out For

Some of the industry-leading 3D printing companies will be attending the PLASTEC East expo, including:

3D Systems

3D Systems is a 3D printing giant with multiple services including 3D printers, software, scanners, and materials. It was co-founded by Chuck Hull in 1986, the first person to create a 3D printed part, and became the first 3D printing company in the world. Since then, 3D Systems has been a leader in the additive manufacturing industry by commercializing the first 3D printer and securing many patents.


 [Image: Alamy]
[Image: Alamy]

Stratasys is the global leader of 3D printers and 3D printing materials. The company makes a huge variety of 3D printers, including printers that are specialized by industry. Seven out of their 24 3D printers are exclusively for dental/orthodontic purposes. Additionally, Stratasys creates a variety of materials for 3D printing including carbon fiber and elastomer.


Cimquest is a leading resource for design and manufacturing products, including 3D printers and scanners, in the Mid-Atlantic and New England area. The company is headquartered in Branchburg, NJ with multiple offices throughout the area.


Formlabs is an international 3D printing company that is headquartered in Massachusetts. The company’s goal is to expand access to digital fabrication so anyone can make anything. Formlabs is fulfilling this goal by creating smaller 3D printers that can fit in any office. The company also develops 3D printing materials and software.


Interpro is an authorized re-seller of HP 3D printers located in Connecticut. The company provides other services such as 3D printing, production of cast urethane and silicone parts, and CNC/fabrication.


Protolabs is a rapid prototyping and on-demand production facility that specializes in injection molding, sheet metal fabrication, CNC machining, and 3D printing. The company came to be out of a desire to reduce the time it took to produce plastic prototype parts. Today, Protolabs claims to be the fastest manufacturer of custom prototypes and on-demand production parts.


We wanted those interested in 3D printing to know that PLASTEC East is providing an excellent opportunity to review the latest 3D printing developments.


By Charles Goulding

Charles Goulding is the Founder and President of R&D Tax Savers, a New York-based firm dedicated to providing clients with quality R&D tax credits available to them. 3D printing carries business implications for companies working in the industry, for which R&D tax credits may be applicable.