A recent newsletter from prominent British jeweller network Benchpeg included a piece that explained in some detail the process undertaken by companies such as 3DesignCenter to design and print jewellery pieces from a 3D model.
The piece in question took a New York manufacturer who has dabbled with 3D technology as a starting point, and used their methods to exemplify the steps every 3D printing company (such as the well known 3DesignCenter) must go through when designing this kind of innovative jewellery.
According to the piece in the Benchpeg newsletter, there are five steps inherent to the creation of every 3D printed item of jewellery — seven, if one counts the pre-printing design and clean up. The first of these steps involves printing the model in a specialised, high-resolution wax, which is followed by the making of a negative mould, obtained by placing said model in a plaster cast. The model is then put in a furnace in order to melt the wax, after which the negative mould is infused with whatever precious metal the jewel will eventually be made of. After this fourth step, all that is left to do is to wait for the model to set, before polishing and shipping it.
What this run-down of the 3D jewellery-making process mostly demonstrates is that the technology part is, in fact, a very minor aspect, with most of the rest of the process hinging on techniques roughly 6.000 years old. What 3D technology does bring to the table is the ability to craft more complex shapes, which would normally have been very hard to hand-sculpt, and which eventually lead to more creative and attractive items of jewellery.
Jewellery is only one of the many markets the boom of 3D printing has impacted. The technology is finding more and more uses daily, and progressively taking over all fields of modern Western life.
To learn more about how 3D Designs can bring to life an image or design for the perfect, memorable gift or award, visit their website at http://www.3designcenter.com/
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