Formlabs, manufacturer of the popular Stereolithography Form 1+ printer, has introduced two new materials to its range: castable and flexible. The range currently includes a variety of colours: clear, white, grey and black. The two new materials will further enhance the breadth of functionality of the Form 1+ 3D printer. Castable is positioned for metal investment casting — with applications centred in designing, engineering and jewellery production. Flexible is a rubber like material, ‘ideal for hinges, engineering applications, shock absorption, tactile surfaces, and other applications requiring resilient, pliable parts.’
Formlabs is continuing to expand its range of materials, which the company states sits alongside its continuing plan of improvement for the hardware and software. Formlabs’ co-founder Maxim Lobovsky said: “Much of the attention in 3D printing is focused on the machine. At Formlabs, we’ve always considered the materials to be just as important. A library of functional materials has always been part of our plan, we’re pleased to introduce these resins to the world.”
The Castable Resin is holds fine detail and burns out cleanly, a requirement for investment casting. Expanding the range of applicability of the Formlabs’ materials to encompass investment casting positions the machine in a lower price range for prosumers and professionals than professional machines such as Stratasys Solidscape printers. Formlabs’ material scientist Katherine Hammes added: “Diverse materials are such a key piece in enabling innovation. We’ve formulated our new resins to work seamlessly with our machine, and we’re thrilled with the results we’ve achieved with Castable and Flexible.”
The new resins are compatible with both the Form 1 and Form 1+ 3D printers. The Flexible Resin will be available in December 2014, whilst Castable is available from the Formlabs online store from today. Also shipments will begin in November for updates to the company’s Grey and Clear resins, which provide extra stability over time.