Stereolithography



Introduction


Stereolithography is the most widely used rapid prototyping/ 3D Printing technology.  It is generally considered to provide the greatest accuracy and best surface finish of any rapid prototyping/3D printing process.

SLA has a high resolution and is most commonly used as patterns for silicone tooling. Often sanded, painted, & tinted. Stereolithography is fast, allowing prototypes to be made in a matter of days, and the complexity of the model is seldom a factor. Whether you are a complete newbie to 3D Printing or an experienced user, please scroll further for an in-depth look at how stereolithography can benefit you project today.
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If you are relatively new to 3D Printing or Stereolithography.

Stereolithography, well its a long word for sure so we’ll call it SLA for short. In this section we shall set out the major things that newcomers want to find out. How does the process work? How does it differ from other 3D Printing technologies? We also get to show how SLA has been used in many applications across many industries. For those who are completely new, how much does it cost?


Why you should consider using MNL for 3D Printing or Stereolithography

Stereolithography, is the 3D Printing technology of choice for many applications due to its high accuracy and excellent surface finish. So why consider MNL for your SLA work? in this section we shall highlight the many sizes of SLA parts we are able to produce on many of the SLA machines. We discuss the different costing alternatives available with the 3-tier costing system. Using Watershed resin, the most widely used SLA resin, but why? How nearly 20 years of SLA 3D Printing gives MNL the edge no other service provider has.


Lets get technical.

Stereolithography, well it is a very technical process, however thanks to some very clever software and bags of experience, MNL are able to provide a consist reliable service.
In this section we provide links to resin data sheets for the available resins. We also give technical explanations as to why our support systems improve reliability and reduce your costs. Beyond the print; the levels of surface finish MNL provide.

  • How SLA Works

    Like virtually all 3D printing technologies, stereolithography is a layer based technology. SLA uses a UV laser to solidify liquid resin on a layer by layer basis to build up a 3D representation of a CAD model.

  • Applications of SLA

    The technology was originally used heavily in product design and development, especially as masters for silicon tooling and vacuum casting. Since its inception the applications have become widespread.

  • Compare with other technologies

    3D Printing technologies vary greatly. The top 3 offer a vast range of possibilities, however they all have their own nuances.

  • A Price Guide

    If you are new to 3D printing or Rapid Prototyping, then here’s a quick guide to the likely prices you would be expected to pay for everyday items.

  • 3 Tier Costing System

    MNL can dedicate entire machines to your project when time is the most important factor. This premium route is complimented by a budget route, when cost is more important then timing.

  • Watershed SLA Material

    TThe most widely used SLA resin we operate is Watershed 11122XC from DSM Somos. This clear SLA resin has ABS-like mechanical properties. It is however, when it is polished that stunning results are obtained.

  • SLA Sizes we can Produce

    MNL can produce small intricate components in very high detail on their Ultra High Definition SLA machine. At the other end of the scale MNL have produced parts taller than the average person.

  • 20 Years of 3D Printing

    MNL has been producing SLA parts from its first stereolithography 3D printer since its installation in september 1996. Even before then it was involved in finishing SLA models for many years.

  • e-Stage Support System

    The SLA process requires a support structure to be built at the same time. This support structure is crucial to ensuring parts are built correctly. Our e-Stage support system is fully automated and very intelligent.

  • Levels of Finish

    MNL offer varying levels of surface finishing, depending upon your needs. Whether you require painting, oplishing or optical clarity, MNL have an option for you.

  • SLA Resin Data Sheets

    There are many SLA resins to choose from. Which is the correct one for you?

  • 20 Years of 3D Printing

    MNL has been producing SLA parts from its first stereolithography 3D printer since its installation in september 1996. Even before then it was involved in finishing SLA models for many years.

SLA Statue rising out of the bath of liquid SLA resin

Stereolithography [SLA] related Case Studies


Here are just a few case studies where stereolithography [SLA] has played a role.