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Added value engineering

A valve for the printer cassette of a 3D printer was proving a challenge to a major customer, who turned to the experts at SFS for assistance. True to the corporate philosophy of value creation “adding value for the customer and for SFS alike,” a solution was soon developed at the injection moulding facility in Altstätten, Switzerland, which not only met the needs of the customer, but also reduced the number of mouldings required from five to just two components.

Added Value


  • Meets the highest demands on leak-tightness and torque strength
  • Reduction of component parts from five to two
  • Long-term partnership, innovation and exchange of know-how led to the success of the project

Simple and clean in use

The 3D printer is used to produce components for dentistry such as bridges, partial crowns and treatment support products. Impressive features of the cartridge system include the user-friendly, contactless and sterile usage. Once the printer fluid filled bottle is inserted into the printer cassette, the valve is released by opening the cassette. The liquid printing medium is activated in the printing zone, and built up in layers via the process known as additive manufacturing.

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Fulfilling extreme demands

Particularly high requirements in terms of leak-tightness and torque strength during opening and closing of the valve were critical to proper functioning and had to be kept continuously in focus. Both features were tested downstream at SFS on the component assembly. All the required processes were fully validated and the influence of the high torque value on the leak-tightness was quantified. This meant that the key requirement could be fully guaranteed: namely, that the valve does not operate and no fluid is released into the printing chamber until the cassette is fully open.

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Inventing success together

The co-development of the complex 3D printer project is another example of how long-term partnership, coupled with innovation, mutual respect and the free exchange of know-how, can be clearly identified as the factors that generate sustainable success for the customer and SFS alike. Moreover, in reducing the number of component parts from the original five down to just two, SFS exceeded the customer’s expectations, creating additional added value.

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