What we thought…

IPF 3D Printing earlier this month were back at the biggest 3D Printing, additive manufacturing and product development show; `TCT` held in Birmingham’s impressive NEC arena.

This highly popular event was again swarming with attendees who came to learn about the disruptive technologies on show. IPF have been 3D Printing for over 12 years and have gained a wealth of expertise in Additive Manufacturing.  Alongside our extensive 3D Printing capabilities, IPF showcased our Machining and Fabrication of plastics for the first time at the TCT exhibition this year, which was well received by our visitors!

It is always enjoyable to see existing customers as well as introducing others to the possibilities of the constantly evolving technology. IPF were privileged to meet with business leaders, early adopters and a wide range industries from art and design to aerospace, automotive and medical!

What impressed us…

When IPF had the chance to have a walk around the exhibition floor, we were impressed with HP, who were there discussing their multi-jet fusion full colour 3D prints, with some striking examples on their stand. IPF look forward to the release of their printer next year!

It was interesting to see SLM Solutions and Renishaw showcasing their remarkable metal 3D printing.

There was a lot of interest in carbon filaments from Colorfab, they were also showcasing prototypes using a composite metal filament that includes brass fill as well as copper and bronze, producing amazing results!

We had a Blast!

At this year’s show, on stand F19 IPF demonstrated what can be achieved using our bureau’s range of Polyjet and FDM technology, including the Stratasys Connex3, multi-material 3D Printer. This innovative Polyjet technology creates brilliantly coloured prototypes with a range of multi-material components including; Rigid and flexible, clear and durable.  IPF had our Connex3 in full operation, printing a colourful and multi-material formation in one build.

Also featuring on our booth standing a half a metre tall was the ‘Armoured Battle Walker’ an impressively large war-game character, that has been rescaled to be a `show stopping` display piece, another of our prototypes gaining attention, was the striking full size human hand, printed in a multi-material and colour combination highlighting a break in the wrist. This is an example what can be achieved using Polyjet multi-material and colour 3D Printing, and how this disruptive technology can assist in medical advancements by creating more efficient and precise medical treatment.

We also bought along our Machining and Fabrication prototypes, made using various techniques including; CNC machining and fabrication, diffusion bonding, diamond polishing/machining, laser profiling and engraving.

IPF’s Bill Bloomfield said “The best part of TCT  for me was being able to advise existing and potential customers on the wide varieties of 3D Printing materials we can offer, and also provide details on our established CNC machining and fabrication, for the first time at TCT.”

TCT was very successful and very well organised in our opinion this year, IPF were impressed with the fascinating conferences that offered insight and expertise to attendees.

Whats next?

IPF look forward to getting their new industrial 3D printer with a vast array of exciting materials (more details soon) along with investment in new technologies and machines in the New Year!

All in all TCT was a success for IPF, it was great to be a part of a very well organised event, the amount of machines and materials available are impressive, and IPF have a very wide selection at your disposal, with the addition of our 3D printing, Machining and Fabrication team to offer their guidance and expertise.

We know we were incredibly busy, so if you didn’t get a chance to talk to us, or to pick up a sample pack of our new materials, please get in touch!

Christopher Barnatt featured IPF in his `Top Ten` prints at the show – rating us 6th!

Got a 3D Project?

If you have an idea in mind that you would like help with or would like to know more about our 3D printing services please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Throwback to when our;


IPF 3D Printing Service Bereau are the first in the UK to have the new Connex3 Polyjet 3D Printer fully operational.

Unit 73 had quite a large delivery last week when a sizable wooden box arrived from Stratasys. Our brand new Connex3 still in its wrapping, was carefully unloaded and placed in our unit along with our family of Stratasys printers, including Objet500 Connex, FDM and Eden350.

Our new toy was then installed with the required software and ready to run its first print. Programmed with an array of colourful IPF casino chips, all that was needed was for the Head of IPF 3D Printing to press go! The result was of an astonishing colour range.

IPF’s 3D Printing was asked by Stratasys to attend the ‘Develop 3D Live show`on Tuesday 15th April at Warwick, so after we ran various multi-coloured and multi-material prints to exhibit at the show, and packed up our Connex3, we travelled to Warwick to educate, inform and answer any questions attendees may have.

Detail on the Connex3:

A Colour Multi-material 3D Printer from Stratasys, is the world’s first 3D printer to combine colours with multi-material 3D printing, creating a Rigid opaque finish.

With a wide range of advanced material options, and dozens of material composites, the Connex poses an unparalleled advantage in product development. A flexible range of 7 different shore hardness’s combined with an even stronger digital ABS in one build.

Brilliant Colour

  • Allows us to 3D print models in as many as 46 colours into a single prototype, from jet black to bright yellow to magenta and hundreds of beautiful blended in-between.

Digital ABS, now with the flexible range:

  • Six composite materials mix Digital ABS (KryptonIvory) with Rubber-like Tango Black Plus Material to represent a variety of `Shore A` values with great durability.

No Assembly!

The Connex3 produces intricate 3D models using a composite of materials and vivid colour – no assembly required!

For more information please see our webpage, also feel free to contact our 3D Printing sales team.

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British Prime Minister David Cameron has presented the Israeli President Shimon Peres with a stunning and symbolic 3D printed sculpture that we at IPF were involved in developing, as a celebration of the exceptional collaboration of UK and Israeli science research.

The award shows the nano-sized plastic particles that are a representation of the work that has been carried out by scientists at the University of Nottingham. The Universities are together developing this technology to deliver these particles to the brain, and restore regeneration of the damaged area. This is funded by the BIRAX regenerative Medicine Programme.  This particular partnership of Science, has made it possible for regenerative cell therapy to be developed to treat neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s disease.

IPF together with British artist Daniel Hilldrup, were invited by the British Council to 3D print a model using Israeli Objet Connex technology from Stratasys. Designed by Daniel Hilldrup, the award was 3D printed on IPF’s Objet500 Connex multi-material printer.

The model features the black rubber-like nano-particles suspended in a clear transparent material. Both base materials can be mixed together to create a total of 12 assortments of black and grey-scale to demonstrate the variation in nano particles inside the transparent block.

This kind of sophisticated multi-material 3D printing is a hallmark of Stratasys’ Objet Connex Multi-material 3D Printers.

Vice President of Marketing for Stratasys, Arita Mattsoff, says; “We’re extremely proud to represent 3D printing for such a prestigious occasion and to push our multi-material technology to its limits”

IPF continues: “Like a ship in a bottle, producing a material inside another is just not possible using traditional manufacturing methods. Using 3D printing technology, we were able to print this combination of materials with a clear transparent material and the black. The results were amazing, especially given the fact the whole piece was produced overnight.”

British artist Daniel Hilldrup concludes: “For a long time in 3D printing, we were limited by the use of only one material at a time when producing a model. Objet Connex Multi-material 3D printing changed everything – it frees you up conceptually to manufacture things that you previously could not visualise. It’s really satisfying when you design something and when it’s actually produced, mirrors the initial vision.”

IPF has enjoyed being part of celebrating such an important advance in medical research, and anticipate what more combining of research could bring.

TCT cover story 

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