Binder Jetting is capable of printing a variety of materials including metals, sands and ceramics. Some materials, like sand, require no additional processing. Other materials are typically cured and sintered and sometimes infiltrated with another material, depending on the application. Hot isostatic pressing may be employed to achieve high densities in solid metals.
Binder Jetting is similar to traditional paper printing. The binder functions like the ink as it moves across the layers of powder, which like paper, forms the final product. Due to its ability to produce solid layers, Binder Jetting is often considered the best option for 3D printing. Binder Jetting also has the ability to print very large objects. Room sized architectural structures have been printed with Binder Jetting.
Binder Jetting is unique in that it does not employ heat during the build process. Other additive techniques utilize a heat source which can create residual stresses in the parts. These stresses must be relieved in a secondary post-processing operation. Additionally with Binder Jetting, the parts are supported by the loose powder in the job box, thus eliminating the need for a build plate. Spreading speeds for Binder Jetting continue to significantly outperform other processes. Binder Jetting has the ability to print large parts and is often more cost-effective than other additive manufacturing methods.
Sandstone is the only material capable of full-color 3D prints. Produced on Z-Corp printers, it is perfect for figurines, life-like models, avatars, and other products that lend themselves to colorful, high-quality printing. Models are created by printing binder material and colored ink layer-by-layer into a bed of gypsum-based powder. After printing, the models are finished with a cyanoacrylate (super glue) sealant to ensure durability and vivid colors. The final product is a hard, brittle material that works great for figurines and visual models, but isn’t well suited to functional parts or daily handing. Models should be handled carefully, and not exposed to water as it will cause fading.
Coated Full Color Sandstone goes through an additional processing step. A two part epoxy resin is brushed onto your product by hand, creating more vivid colors, additional strength, and a smoother surface finish.
When printing in this material, some variation in color shade is unavoidable, especially with difficult-to-produce colors such as browns and skin tones. We optimize each print run to make individual models look great, may see differences in color when looking at multiple prints of the same model side by side.