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Industrie 4.0

3D printing is getting things in gear at Easelink

The Austrian start-up Easelink orders its components made by additive manufacturing directly from the printer because they are available so quickly.

01 Sep. 2018
HMI-ID08-057kt_igus
3D printing is getting things in gear at Easelink (Picture: igus GmbH)

The company is based in Graz and has developed a two-component charging system for electric automobiles under the name “Matrix Charging”. During parking, a connector fitted to the vehicle automatically connects to a charging station in the parking space. The electricity is delivered conductively or wirelessly and offers a transmission efficiency of 99%.

The gears it needs are made of friction-optimized, wear-resistance plastic, which Easelink orders from the 3D printing service provider igus . Following selection of the gear module and specification of the number of teeth and the anticipated torque transmission, the provider’s online configurator generates a 3D model automatically. As a result, the development department at Easelink does not need to bother with a 3D CAD program for the basic design. Manufacturing is by the SLS (Selective Laser Sintering) process, and the parts are shipped within 24 to 72 hours, depending on the order. This guarantees Easelink fast availability of special components, particularly for prototype construction. In comparison to polyoxymethylenes, igus iglidur I6, which is the material used for component printing, is reported to provide significantly higher wear resistance.