SLA & SLS Prototyping
For rapid prototypes and low-volume production we offer stereolithography (SLA) and selective laser sintering (SLS) of plastics as an additional option to 3D metal printing (DMLM).
SLA prototyping is one of the earliest 3D printing methods. It uses a UV light to cure a photopolymer, such as ABS, layer-by-layer, making a durable plastic solid with good resolution of detail. SLA is typically not fast but it wastes little material, and the prototype can be used “as is” or as a master mold for a polyurethane vacuum casting.
Selective Laser Sintering (SLS)
SLS prototyping uses a laser to fuse powdered Nylon into a physical solid layer-by-layer. The process makes a prototype with a rougher surface texture that requires secondary finishing if it’s to be used as a master mold, but the advantage is that the prototype is more robust than its SLA counterpart., making it more suitable for mechanical models.
SLA and SLS models typically have layer thicknesses of + .3mm with a lateral deviation of + .1mm. Finer tolerances than this can easily be achieved with post machining per customer requirements. Please see here for more information on the tolerance guide for plastic materials.