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Brisbane firm breaks the mould on 3D design and printing 

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EMMA WILLIAMS THE COURIER-MAIL MARCH 01, 2015

Darrell Bennett and his 3D Prototyping machine. Pic Darren England.

Darrell Bennett and his 3D Prototyping machine. Pic Darren England.

BRISBANE business 3D Prototyping is proving that if you can imagine it, you can create it and according to Managing Director Darrell Bennett some of us have bigger imaginations than others.

“The weirdest thing we’ve been asked to print was a sex toy,” laughed Mr Bennett, who has been running 3D Prototyping for seven years.

He describes his motto as concept, design, reality and said his business is a one-stop shop for design, prototyping, scanning and plastic moulding.

Mr Bennett said his clients range from engineers and manufacturers to individuals wanting a single piece made.

“3D printing is making it more accessible for people to test their own prototypes,” said Mr Bennett.

However there are limitations to what people can do themselves. Mr Bennett said they often get people who have a concept but need help designing the 3D Computer Aided Design file (CAD).

“You need to be able to design in CAD software, so unless you have an engineering or manufacturing background you won’t have the skills to design it,” said Mr Bennett.

“That’s where we come in.”

An existing item can also be scanned to replicate or modify it.

“We actually scanned the Wally Lewis Statue at Suncorp Stadium using a portable 3D scanner and were then able to print a miniaturised version,” said Mr Bennett.

“Suncorp couldn’t get the original artist to create a smaller scale version, so they asked me to print one.”

  3D Prototyping made a scan of the famous Wally Lewis statue.
3D Prototyping made a scan of the famous Wally Lewis statue.
Once a CAD file has been created, it is printed by a 3D printer which layers a particular material to build the product.

3D Prototyping has recently purchased the world’s first carbon fibre, Kevlar and fibre glass printer, the only one of its kind in Australasia.

Manufacturing parts out of carbon fibre and Kevlar adds a greater degree of strength compared to other types of plastics.

“Kevlar is five times stronger than aluminium,” said Mr Bennett.

“We can also print in soft plastic, hard plastic, flexible plastic, rubberlike and clear materials.”

Jon Pryer from Neo Industrial Design in Newcastle

3D Prototyping made a scan of the famous Wally Lewis statue.

NSW has been a customer of 3D Prototyping for many years.

He said the beauty of 3D printing is that you don’t have to be in the same state or even country to get something printed, but can instead base the decision on the processes you want to achieve the final result.

“The good thing about going to 3D Prototyping is they offers a range of ways to print and can discuss the best way to make the particular part that you want,” Mr Pryer said.

Mr Pryer said another benefit of 3D printing is that it is relatively quick and allows you to test whether your design functions properly before you invest more time and money into it.

“It can be particularly cost effective when manufacturing on a smaller scale, like when you only need a few parts,” said Mr Pryer.

He believes that 3D printing has a big future and will lead into rapid manufacturing on a larg

 

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