Jewellery manufacturing may yield beautiful results, but it is subject to the same market pressures as any other industry.
To help the process along, 3D Systems Corp has recently developed a new specialised stereolithography material for jewellery manufacturing. The material will be used to create intricate, high quality pieces of jewellery by allowing designers to produce accurate models with exact wall thicknesses and maximum scooping, so that the use of precious metals is minimised in the final version. It is also capable of producing identical designs of different weights and sizes.
Amethyst SL photoreactive epoxy resin material will allow jewellery manufacturers to produce design models and patterns for rubber and silicon moulding, and direct casting in hours rather than days. Designing one-of-a-kind jewellery and small series is also more cost-effective. (Especially good for unique Christmas presents!)
With a striking amethyst colour, visual inspection is made easier, as is de-moulding for rubber moulding applications. Amethyst SL, has a density of 1.1g/cm3, viscosity of 350cps at 30°C and a glass transition temperature of 103°C.
The material could be also be used in the biomedical and electronics industries, which would benefit from the high detail resolution. ‘One possible medical application is in the manufacturing of microfluid plates for blood analysis. Amethyst SL, would allow even smaller channels to be built into the plates,' says Deniz Okur from 3D Systems. Models are created by building up a series of ultra-thin (25µm) resin layers to produce items with excellent feature resolution and quality.
‘The jewellery industry is advancing quickly in its use of new technologies,’ says Mervyn Rudgley, 3D Systems’ Senior Director of Product Management. ‘Time saved in production is a key advantage as competition grows. By complementing traditional working methods, the Amethyst material and the Viper system enable the jewellery industry to progress to advanced digital manufacturing.’