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Knust-Godwin acquires a Velo3D Sapphire XC system

Expanding contract manufacturer’s addressable use-cases by printing larger parts and achieving high-volume production at lower costs

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Knust-Godwin, a precision contract manufacturer, has received a Sapphire XC from Velo3D to expand its metal additive manufacturing (AM) capabilities.

The acquisition of an additional Sapphire family printer from Velo3D further expands Knust-Godwin’s additive manufacturing offering by unlocking high-volume production and lower costs for its largest customers. Knust-Godwin’s Sapphire XC will reside in its Katy, Texas facility is calibrated for Inconel 718, and is fully compatible with its other Sapphire Inconel 718 printers, so as customers scale up production, they can take advantage of the Sapphire XC’s benefits.

Since its release in December 2021, there has been extensive demand for the Sapphire XC. The demand is largely driven by the Sapphire XC’s ability to lower production costs by up to 75% and produce parts that are 500% larger in volume compared to the company’s Sapphire system. Knust-Godwin is the first of Velo3D’s network of contract manufacturers to receive a Sapphire XC.

“Our company has spent over 55 years serving our customers in the aerospace, defense, oil and gas, and semiconductor industries, and we view additive manufacturing as a huge complement to our precision manufacturing offering,” said Mike Corliss, Knust-Godwin VP of Technology. “By adding a Sapphire XC to our manufacturing floor, we can better serve our customers and help them utilize additive manufacturing in new ways, as well as differentiate our additive manufacturing offering from our competitors.”

Contract manufacturer Knust-Godwin acquired a Velo3D Sapphire XC system to expand addressable use-cases with larger parts and high-volume
The Sapphire XC with a diagram showing its build volume

With the addition of its Sapphire XC, Knust-Godwin now operates six Sapphire metal 3D printing systems from Velo3D. These printers are powered by Flow print preparation and Assure quality assurance software as well as the Velo3D Intelligent Fusion manufacturing process. By combining hardware and software with proven, repeatable processes, Velo3D is able to make each Sapphire printer fully compatible, so as customers’ production needs increase, they can easily add additional printers to their manufacturing facilities to produce identical parts or scale up production by moving from a Sapphire to a Sapphire XC. It also enables distributed manufacturing. When customers who have their own Velo3D solutions reach production limits, they can achieve greater scale by turning to a contract manufacturer like Knust-Godwin.

“The interest we’ve seen in Sapphire XC is remarkable and we expect to soon be sold out for deliveries through the end of 2022,” said Zach Murphree, Velo3D Vice President of Global Sales and Business Development. “The Sapphire XC will help Knust-Godwin’s customers unlock new use-cases for AM by enabling the printing of larger parts, and significantly lowering manufacturing costs for customers printing parts in larger volumes.”

The Velo3D Sapphire XC is capable of producing prints that are 600 mm in diameter and 550 mm in height, making it one of the largest metal laser powder bed fusion AM solutions on the market. The system uses eight 1-kilowatt lasers to produce parts. Its protrusion-tolerant, non-contact recoater is also faster than that of the original Sapphire system. These capabilities increase the throughput of the Sapphire XC by more than 400% compared to the original Sapphire, greatly reducing the cost of parts produced.

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