Nylon has always been one of the most widely used materials in manufacturing in
anywhere from machining to research laboratory equipment to medical prosthetics. They are so widely used for their inherent properties of being completely non-interfering with biology in prosthetics and their overall strength in machining and equipment.
Today, nylons are either machined in CNC machines from cast nylon blocks or
synthesized for coatings and epoxies. However, as additive manufacturing is becoming more popular and viewed to give companies an edge when it comes to prototyping and manufacturing parts on demand, nylons are leading this change.
Research and development departments and laboratories of manufacturing companies will start to develop more applications of 3D printed nylon are going to be more efficient to the conventional CNC. The most popular applications of nylons include medical due to its inherent properties of flexibility, strength and non-interference with the biology of the patient.
Research laboratories, hospitals and leading medical companies are using nylons when creating custom prosthetics, medical devices, dental implants, bone implants, and orthopedics. The main use for them is creating custom parts for each patient which can then be iterated without the wait and cost of standard CNC manufacturing. As FDA approved nylons become available, additive manufacturing will become the industry standard for creating custom medical devices.
On-Demand Printing of Common and Custom Machine Parts
Although this application of nylon filaments has not been as widely observed, it will become an easy adaptation in the manufacturing field as it will decrease costs due to wait for parts to be chined and shipped of standard CNC machined nylon parts. 3D printing of small parts on demand, such as custom nylon washers, will create efficacies that will translate to more efficient shops and companies as it will affect their bottom line and turnaround.
Currently, Taulman distributes and produces the widest range of nylons on the market with a focus on using these new 3D printing materials in a manufacturing and medical setting. Taulman products have been tested to industry standard and the results are posted on the Taulman website under each corresponding material.
It is important to note that although most 3D printing materials on the market are used mainly for creating prototypes and fit and feel models as they are not replacements for stronger injection moulded parts. Nylon filaments do keep their inherent properties and are comparable to machined nylons in terms of strength and characteristics.