3D Systems has announced the release of a new 3D printing resin, FabPro Elastic BLK. The new elastomer material is reportedly ideal for the prototyping and production of rubber-like parts using the FabPro 1000 3D printer. 3D Systems highlights a range of applications, such as seals, gaskets, grips and over-molds, which the filament could be used for.
The latest material release by 3D Systems, FabPro Elastic BLK expands upon the company’s broad range of materials for the FabPro 1000 system, a Digital Light Printing (DLP) system for industrial, entry-level 3D printing.
Released in 2018, the FabPro 1000 is marketed as an easy-to-use SLA printer with rapid print speeds (up to three times faster than competing systems). The machine’s print rates make it suitable for rapidly turning out prototypes for engineering, dental or jewelry applications, to name but a few.
Presently, 3D Systems offers a range of resins compatible with the FabPro 1000 3D printer, including tough engineering plastics, such as FabPro Tough BLK; castable materials, such as FabPro JewelCast GRN; general purpose plastics, such as FabPro Proto GRY; and now the elastomeric FabPro Elastic BLK.
“When your goal is design verification, building an RTV tool for short-run elastomeric casting is a big time-sink,” writes 3D Systems about the new material. “When you consider the iterative nature of prototyping, it is also a recurring one. For years, this investment in time and resources has been accepted as part of the prototyping process for elastomeric designs. The recent launch of 3D Systems’ FabPro Elastic BLK material offers engineers a new opportunity to accelerate the prototyping of rubber-like parts to save time and money in design verification.”
The new resin is characterized by good compressive properties and shape recovery, similar to a Shore 65A elastomer and closely resembling rubber. The material can be used to cost-effectively prototype parts to be made from natural rubber as well as silicone and urethane.