Kent State University (KSU), Ohio, has awarded its Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the 2016 season with a metal 3D printed trophy. Footballer Nick Holley was commended for his superb performance which saw him adapt to a new quarterback position from initial play as a wide receiver.

The Kent State Golden Flashes football team presented Holley with a trophy 3D printed in Virtual Foundry’s bronze Filamet™ – a stark contrast to the conventional bronze casting technique that has been used since the trophy’s inception in 2009.

The 3D printed "Jack's Run" sculpture trophy. Images via the Virtual Foundry.

The 3D printed “Jack’s Run” sculpture trophy. Images via the Virtual Foundry.

The Jack Rittichier Memorial award

The MVP award features the “Jack’s Run” sculpture, which commemorates Jack Rittichier. An alumnus of Kent State, Rittichier is remembered for both his heroics on the football field and his services to the US Coast Guard.

Retired Coast Guard Lieutenant Jim Loomis with Nick Holley, coach Paul Haynes, and former teammate of Rittichier's Allan Kaupinen. Photo via Kent State Sports News.

Retired Coast Guard Lieutenant Jim Loomis with Nick Holley, coach Paul Haynes, and former teammate of Rittichier’s Allan Kaupinen. Photo via Kent State Sports News.

FDM in metal

The trophy was 3D printed by The Virtual Foundry, based in Wisconsin. For the bronze finish, the company used its Filamet™ material, which comes on a conventional spool and enables metal 3D printed parts via FDM.

Filamet™ is composed of 90% metal, but this can be made fully dense through a further sintering process. Alternatively, the FDM 3D printed objects can be post-processed without sintering and still achieve a quality finish.

3D Printing Industry previously held an exclusive interview with The Virtual Foundry founder Brad Woods to learn more about this process.

The Virtual Foundry 3D printed metal cone cut-away.

The Virtual Foundry 3D printed metal cone cut-away.

A first for the foundry

The Virtual Foundry believes this case is the the first major sporting award to directly use 3D printing. While Formula 1 has given 3D printed awards in the past, these were electroplated, and not produced on a desktop 3D printer.

3D Printing Industry Awards

To celebrate the biggest names in additive manufacturing, 3D Printing Industry will be handing out metal awards 3D printed in The Virtual Foundry’s Filamet™. 3D model sharing platform MyMiniFactory is currently hosting a competition to choose the final design for the 1st Annual 3D Printing Industry Awards.

If you would like to try the unique material out for yourself, all accepted submissions in the 3D Printing Industry Awards design challenge will receive a 200g spool of Filamet™.

The 3D Printing Industry Awards design competition.

The 3D Printing Industry Awards design competition.

Don’t forget to place your votes in the 3D Printing Industry Awards.

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Featured image shows footballer Nick Holley with 3D printed Rittichier Memorial award. Photo via Kent State Athletics.

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