SLS 3D printing for Orthotics
An introduction to SLS 3D Printing for Orthotics
Many companies have recently switched from traditional manufacturing methods to 3D printing orthoses. Why is this happening now? And what is SLS 3D printing anyway?
PDF: An introduction to SLS 3D Printing for Orthotics
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Selecting an SLS 3D Printer for Orthoses
Today, almost any orthosis should be printable using the SLS 3D printing technology. Very large ones may require very expensive machines, though. Below are a few examples of what is already being done. The list is by no means complete, and companies regularly add new, innovative 3D-printed orthoses to their product range.
Which SLS 3D printer is most suitable for printing orthoses? This depends on several aspects. In most cases, the very large, industrial SLS 3D printers are too expensive and too demanding in terms of operator skills, industrial facilities with separate ventilation and special power outlets. Instead, look for the machines that you can rent.
A foot and ankle orthosis heals foot drop caused by ankle dorsiflexion during the swing phase. This is one of the most used rehabilitation devices. When built through 3D printing technology, it gives better accuracy and faster results.
Choosing an SLS 3D printer that can be placed in the offices of the people measuring the limbs of people, and training them on how to scan and print orthoses themselves, can cut both labour costs and production times dramatically.
Case: 3D printed orthosis replaces traditional plaster
The hand was scanned in with a 3D scanner and based on it, a model adapted for additive manufacturing in Wematter’s machines was developed. A number of variants were then set to be selected by the patient. The whole thing was supervised by the doctor who also decided to shift from traditional plaster to 3D printed orthoses.
The result is that the patient can now live a more accessible life with the opportunity to exercise, shower, wash dishes, and get dressed without problems. This is the first step to digitizing care and transferring experience and knowledge from industry to improve the everyday life of patients.
A complete ecosystem for orthotics production
SLS 3D printer
The Gravity SLS 3D printer and its ecosystem can be placed almost in any environment and is easy to get started with regardless of previous additive manufacturing experience.
We offer one of the broadest ranges of SLS powder for additive manufacturing, covering everything from really soft materials to ones made really stiff with fiber reinforcement.