MD&M Show in Minneapolis

Minnesota’s Lt. Governor, Tina Smith, and Proto Labs CEO, Vicki Holt, talk shop.

Proto Labs is at MD&M Minneapolis this week (Wednesday and Thursday, Nov. 4-5) in conjunction with Minnesota Medtech Week. Stop by booth #327 to talk with manufacturing experts, learn about newly launched capabilities and, of course, see prototypes and parts in all shapes and sizes made by our 3D printing, CNC machining and injection molding services.

We kicked today off with a visit by Lt. Governor of Minnesota, Tina Smith, who met with Proto Labs CEO Vicki Holt to discussed the state of Manufacturing and Proto Labs’ efforts.

At this week’s show, we’re all about speed-to-market and reducing development time, so Proto Labs will be participating in the following two conference sessions:

Tony Holtz.

  • Our technical specialist, Tony Holtz, will be at the Tech Theater stage on Nov. 4 at 2:30 p.m. talking about prototyping and low-volume production for medical applications. He’ll go in-depth on how to accelerate the development of medical devices and quickly launch products to market.
  • Eric Utley (our expert on everything 3D printing) will also be participating on a panel discussion titled “Going Beyond Prototyping: Accelerating Regulatory Approval and Speed-to-Market” on Nov. 5 from 1 to 1:40 p.m. The group will evaluate common pre-development design failures, how to differentiate prototypes from final products, and tactics to better analyze the composition of prototypes versus final products.

Haven’t registered for the show yet? Enjoy a FREE Exhibit Hall Pass from Proto Labs. Register online and enter promo code: MYPASS

See you there!

3D Printing Fully Functional Parts with Selective Laser Sintering

Selective laser sintering (SLS) is an industrial-grade 3D printing process. It builds durable nylon prototypes and functional parts using a laser that “draws” slices of a CAD model in a bed of material, fusing micron-sized particles one layer at a time. The result is fully functional plastic parts that might have been otherwise challenging to manufacture using machining or injection molding.
This month’s tip discusses:

  • Properties and applications of various nylon materials
  • Managing the SLS build process
  • Design elements to improve eventual moldability
  • Surface finishes and post-processing
  • Maximum part size, achievable tolerances and other considerations.

Read the full design tip here.

Trailblazing the World of Digital Manufacturing — As Seen on FOX Business’ ‘After the Bell’

Earlier this week, our CEO, Vicki Holt, appeared on Fox Business’ “After the Bell.” She explained how Proto Labs’ digital manufacturing capabilities — from advanced 3D printing to quick-turn CNC machining to rapid injection molding — have enabled product developers and design engineers to iterate faster than ever, bringing products to market at an unprecedented speed. If you missed the live broadcast, check out the clip:


Video courtesy of FOX Business: “After the Bell.” Continue reading

Rapid Manufacturing for Metals

We’ve just published a comprehensive new white paper on metal materials for rapid manufacturing. The paper explores soft metals like aluminum, brass and magnesium as well as hard metals like steel and stainless steel. Learn about:

  • Material properties that bring strength, durability, lightweighting and more to parts.
  • Typical part applications for various metals
  • Prototyping and low-volume production processes from 3D printing, to machining and molding metal parts.

Download a free metals white paper today. And if you dabble more in plastics, our Materials Matter white paper on thermoplastic materials is also downloadable here.

Your Easy Guide to Digital Manufacturing

Due to the popularity of our first book, “Injection Molding Part Design for Dummies,” we’ve published a new 72-page book on digital manufacturing. It’s a comprehensive resource to help you navigate the increasingly tech-driven world of advanced manufacturing.

“Digital Manufacturing for Dummies” offers an in-depth look at the various rapid prototyping and low-volume production processes and provides tips to improve part design. Find out how to:

  • leverage 3D printing, CNC machining and injection molding processes to bring your product to market fast.
  • evaluate suppliers with the proper criteria to meet your quick-turn manufacturing needs.
  • increase the manufacturability of your parts.

Order it for free today.