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Bowman launches 3D printing division
Bowman International has launched its 3D printing division – Bowman Additive Production. The new offering follows Bowman’s purchase of a state of the art selective laser sintering system, which can produce complex geometries from engineering grade polymer materials.
Development of several products relating specifically to split bearings, are now ready for full scale production which is due to start in early January, using only high grade Nylon 11 (PA 1102) which is made entirely from renewable sources.
The first component to be ‘printed’ will be a revolutionary patented split bearing cage design, with composite inserts to provide the strength or wear characteristics required for highly demanding environments. Incorporating inserts into the finished product takes Bowman’s Additive Production division to a level of engineering which is rarely seen, even in industries where additive manufacturing is common place.
Jacob Turner, Head of Additive Production for Bowman, explains the significance of the company’s new division: “Historically, additive manufacturing has been largely the domain of rapid prototyping with very few innovators taking the step into true component production.
“Bowman has the advanced engineering expertise to make this bold move and we are confident that our additive production division will shape the future for engineering component manufacture within the bearings industry.
“Additive production as a method of full scale manufacturing has a wealth of benefits, including the ability to design and test multiple prototypes really quickly, making alterations and producing design variations much faster than what is possible with traditional tooling.
“This makes the design phase of any new product both fast and cost effective, getting a new engineering component into full scale production in a matter of months.” (this may need changing?)
With the backing of Bowman International’s manufacturing and distribution heritage, the fledgling division offers an end-to-end production service including design, prototyping, testing, inspection, production, stock holding and distribution.
Paul Mitchell, Managing Director of Bowman International, concludes: “Our investment into additive manufacturing marks a pivotal point in the future development of the Bowman International name. We are proud innovators within our marketplace and look forward to exploring the new manufacturing possibilities which are now within our remit.”
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