AM Technologies Launches Desktop Vapor Smoothing Unit for Enhanced 3D Print Finishing

By on March 15th, 2024 in Hardware, news

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Desktop vapor smoothing unit [Source: AM Technologies]

AM Technologies announced a desktop vapor smoothing unit.

Smoothing is a process required by many 3D printed parts because the printing process usually presents layer lines on surfaces. For some applications these need to be removed to produce a perfectly smooth surface.

Many approaches have been used to remove layer lines, including manual sanding and polishing, automated tumbling and more. One interesting approach is chemical: certain chemicals can soften polymers, which then can smooth out the layer lines.

That’s the basis of AM Technologies’ approach. They use a specially designed “green chemistry”solution, called PostPro Pure, to smooth parts using a precision controlled process. The temperature, vapor motion, chemical amount and timing must all be precisely controlled in order to get quality parts. Too much exposure would compromise the part’s geometry, while too little would not smooth the surface. They say their process can perfectly complete parts in 90-120 minutes.

Currently their process works on PA12 material, but they are working on additional solutions for MJF, SLS, HSS, SAF, and FDM/FFF.

Up to now they’ve sold larger-format devices designed to smooth parts for industry. The goal is throughput to enable production of 3D printed parts. While a company might buy many 3D printers to increase throughput, they also need to complement that with post processing capacity.

Now they’ve announced a “desktop” version of their vapor-smoothing system, called PostPro SFX.

There are three “bundles”. One is the “starter bundle”, which, as you can see in the image above literally fits on a tabletop. This bundle includes racks and a single consumable cartridge.

The “complete bundle” includes a specifically designed workstation to place the device, as well as additional consumables.

The “ultimate bundle” is basically the “complete bundle” combined with their depowdering unit, the PostPro DPX. This enables operators to blast away loose powder on their SLS prints before placing them in the PostPro SFX smoothing unit.

The SFX system is not designed for major production, but instead is made in a more compact format for occasional or limited production run purposes. It may also be quite appropriate for research institutions or makerspaces. This clearly fills a market need that must have been asked of AM Technologies, and provides another revenue stream for the company.

Via AM Technologies

By Kerry Stevenson

Kerry Stevenson, aka "General Fabb" has written over 8,000 stories on 3D printing at Fabbaloo since he launched the venture in 2007, with an intention to promote and grow the incredible technology of 3D printing across the world. So far, it seems to be working!

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