News

How to Print a Yacht with Carbon Fiber

The 2019 boat show season, which kicked off in late April, promises to be an exciting one. Boat enthusiasts and potential buyers will have a great look at everything from new fiberglass rowboats all the way up to superyachts suitable for Hollywood celebrities and princes alike. Many of the more expensive boats will feature heavy doses of carbon fiber fabricated with 3D printing. Yes, you did read that correctly. Carbon fiber is not reserved for things like golf clubs and tennis rackets. It is a material that has been used by the marine and aerospace industries for decades. And now that 3D

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The 2 Ways to 3D Print with Carbon Fiber

The high costs associated with manufacturing and fabricating have kept carbon fiber out of reach for some industries. As a result, the composites industry has been working hard to develop new technologies and processes that could help bring prices down. One of those technologies is 3D printing. It is a technology that is showing great promise. Imagine being in charge of a car company looking to be the first to market a long-range electric vehicle. One of the vital parts you need for your car would be best if made from carbon fiber, but you cannot justify the cost of manufacturing. You

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Rapid Prototyping and 3D Printing: A Perfect Match

Rock West Composites has been involved in our fair share of prototyping projects over the years. Customers rely on us to help them design and build composite prototypes that either move into mass production or remain as limited-run parts for on-demand production. We use a variety of prototyping techniques, including something known as rapid prototyping. Rapid prototyping really came into its own about 10 years ago. It was birthed out of a desire to create more rapid manufacturing techniques using composite materials. Though rapid prototyping is considered to still be in its infancy

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3D Printing and Prototyping: The Aerospace Race is On

In late 2014, Reuters published an article detailing how Lockheed Martin's Skunk Works opened up its manufacturing facilities for the first time in history. The importance of that decision is monumental in a number of different ways. For one, it has made it abundantly clear within the aerospace industry that the race is on to see who will dominate the market share for years to come. Those who master 3D printing and prototyping will likely be the winners. If you are not quite sure why this is so remarkable, you probably don't know that Skunk Works has been an ultra-secretive

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3D Composite Printing: Why Not Just Print the Parts?

Composites World Magazine ran a great piece a couple of years ago introducing the concept of 3D printed composite tooling. The article, written by contributor Sara Black, focused primarily on how this new method of toolmaking benefits the aerospace industry. But over the last couple of years, we have seen it expanded well beyond aerospace. To the untrained eye, 3D printing would seem to be the easiest and most cost-effective way to fabricate all sorts of composite parts. This leads to an inevitable question: why not just print the parts instead of printing tools for fabricating them

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