Jewelry is the industry which has adopted 3d printing on a very large scale. Most of the jewelry manufacturing units have 3d printers in house or are using 3d printing service bureaus for printing their models. This technology offers high productivity, better precision and details and ability to create intricate designs as compared to conventional handcrafting jewelry.
3D printers are used for making wax or resin patterns of jewelry which can be casted into gold, silver, brass, etc using lost wax casting method.
Process can be explained in following stages:
- Concept of any jewelry is first created by the manual designer on paper in the form of sketches.
- Then the CAD Designer will convert the sketch into a 3D model using suitable software packages.
- The 3D models are then submitted to the 3d printers which will print it to create the wax/resin patterns of the same designs.
- All the 3d printed parts are then attached to wax stem to form a tree.
- Then this tree is kept in the flask to which investment liquid is poured in and kept idle to solidify.
- The flask in then kept inside the oven for several hours where the wax patterns will melt out creating the cavity of same shape. Liquid metal is then poured in these cavities through casting machines and it takes shape of the patterns.
- Metal tree is then removed by breaking of flask and each jewelry is then finished to give the final glossy look.
Advantage of using 3D printing in Jewelry
- The productivity of the manufacturing unit increases by multiple times.
- With digital manufacturing, it is possible to make many iterations of same designs by editing the CAD files.
- Production gets accuracy and repeatability of a machine.
- Enables manufacturer to have digital inventory.
- Many intricate designs of jewelry can be created which was never possible by conventional method.