There’s a lot of talk about 3D printing nowadays, especially as 3D printers are getting more advanced and more cost effective. The longer they are developed and used by businesses and individuals around the world, the more affordable and more powerful they become.
There’s no doubting that 3D printers are “cool,” but are they worth it for your business?
Like all things business: it depends. Every situation is unique and you need to ask yourself whether or not the investment is worth it. Consider the following as you decide whether or not 3D printing and 3D printer leasing is right for your business.
3D Printing Roles
To some, 3D printing is still considered a very new product and technology. The roles a 3D printer can fill will be varied based on the business that you run.
For example, a 3D printer will have different applications in an office setting compared to a business that operates in a heavy industrial setting. In some cases you can utilize 3D printing as a piece of technology to help other parts of your business succeed, or you could consider selling 3D printers from your business.
In smaller settings, a 3D printer is valuable for a wide variety of different utilizations. For example, getting 3D printer leasing would allow you to gain access to a wide range of 3D printers that could:
- Build entire products from scratch.
- Prototype products before you develop them further.
- Make additions or modifications to existing products.
- Make existing tools in your business more efficient.
In a larger setting, like construction and industrial businesses, 3D printers can vary massively in size based on the roles that need to be filled. In these larger industries, you may see 3D printers that can:
- Create prototypes of products before official resources are devoted to their creation.
- Create rapid testing drafts to reduce amount of time a project is spent in the research and development stages.
- Construct buildings and other massive structures.
- Make individual components as part of a larger production line.
- Create scale models to showcase what a finished project will look like.
Picking the Size of a 3D Printer
The size of printer you aim for will depend on what you want to accomplish within your business. Are you a smaller business that needs to prototype products before committing to production?
Do you only need to create smaller components to send to your customers? Or are you an industrial or construction company that needs a significant 3D printer to complete massive jobs?
Understanding the role your 3D printer will fill will help you determine the size of printer you get with your 3D printer leasing.
3D Printing in Product Development
Using 3D printing for prototyping in a variety of different industries is fairly common. It’s a great practice to take on for most business types because of the cost savings associated with 3D printing.
Businesses that don’t use 3D printing have to rely on production facilities and spending more money on creating their prototypes. On the other hand, businesses that use a 3D printer (whether it’s in house or not) can save a great deal of money on their prototypes.
Through 3D printing you save money because you’re not creating one-and-done molds for each prototype iteration that you push out. With 3D printing you’re only using a digital file, which is then sent to the 3D printer.
The 3D printer then builds the product, literally from the ground up, which requires no mold.
In addition, especially in businesses that create products with very expensive or high quality materials, using a 3D printer allows you to test certain versions of a product in much more affordable materials, reducing total cost of the prototyping process.
Another significant feature of 3D printing is that you can usually create prototypes much faster, since you don’t have to rely on anyone or anything but your 3D printer and whatever queue of printables you have lined up. In other words, once you’ve printed your prototype, tested it, and made necessary corrections, you can jump straight into printing your next version of the prototype.
Using 3D Printing to Make Customizations to Existing Products
3D printing isn’t restricted to making products and components from scratch. When you use 3D printer leasing to acquire your desired 3D printer, you can also use it to customize your existing products or make additional components for your current line of products that you offer.
You may discover that there are minor modifications that you could make to certain products or tools within your business that you may not have been able to do prior to having access to a 3D printer. Look into the tools and products you have and think about the possibility of modifying them or making minor improvements to them.
Using 3D Printing for Promotional Purposes
Due to the unique, creative aspect of 3D printing, you can create one of a kind and personalized promotional items for your business that you could take to networking and marketing events. Through 3D printer leasing you can gain your own unique marketing tool.
Provide 3D Printing as a Service Within Your Business
If you’re hooked on a 3D printer and need 3d printer leasing, but don’t know whether or not it makes the most sense to integrate into your business, you could consider selling a service to let customers utilize your printer when it’s not being operated. This is a great way to gain some additional revenue if you’re not operating your 3D printer full time.
Will a 3D Printer Save You Time or Improve Your Business?
At the end of the day, this is the question you need to be asking yourself before you consider 3D printer leasing. “Will this 3D printer and 3D printer leasing save me time or improve my business?”
There are plenty of uses for a 3D printer, most of which are useful in some way. But you need to decide whether or not getting 3D printer leasing will help your business save time or otherwise improve it in some way.
For example, your 3D printer may allow you to gain a much faster prototyping stage, which is vastly useful for businesses that are constantly innovating and creating new products, but don’t want to waste time (and money) on traditional prototyping processes.
However, a 3D printer doesn’t exclusively have to cut down on time for it to be valuable. 3D printer leasing can also allow you to increase the level of customization and freedom you have over your products.
It can allow you to create and modify tools that your business needs. In larger and more demanding industries (like construction and industrial), 3D printer leasing could be leveraged to save a lot of money on prototype costs by using more affordable materials or by reducing the cost of scale models.
There are many different ways that 3D printer leasing and 3D printers can help businesses of all sizes and in many different industries? Do you have a question about 3D printer leasing or how it can help your business?
Give Trust Capital a call today at 866-458-4777 and we’ll be happy to help you decide if a 3D printer investment is right for you and how to go about getting started with 3D printer leasing.