Finishing of SLS-Parts for Rapid Manufacturing (RM) - A Comprehensive Approach

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Schmid, M.
Simon, C.
Levy, G.N.

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University of Texas at Austin


Plastic parts are often coated to fulfill the desired functional requirements during product life. This may be for decorative purposes only, but also for functions such as improved tribology, wear and humidity resistance, UV- and light stability, hygienic and biofilm resistance. Moving SLS towards Rapid Manufacturing (RM) and making those parts competitive with parts produced by other techniques (e.g. injection molding) implies the adoption of a new quality of part finishing and coating strategy for SLS. This paper provides a survey of current finishing methods used for RM-SLS parts in our institute and highlights the manually-driven process steps. The need for, and first trials with, a more automated finishing process (e.g. vibratory grinding) are discussed, as is the need for innovative supporting software tools.


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