3D printed faucet comes out
After 3D printing technology produced wash basins and bathtubs, 3D printing technology was once again used in the sanitary field. According to foreign media reports, on January 9th, at the Building Materials Exhibition (KBIS) held in Orlando, Florida, the luxury bathroom brand KALLISTA under Kohler and a 3D printing company jointly launched the world’s first 3D printed faucet at the exhibition. It can be seen that the application of 3D printing technology in the sanitary field is faster than imagined.
3D printing faucet
It is understood that as the world’s first 3D printed faucet, it uses 3D direct metal printing technology and uses high-quality stainless steel 316 powder material to ensure that the faucet will not rust or corrode. The appearance design is also very unique, the mesh format design shows a sense of fashion, and the hand feel is different from ordinary faucets. The unique cubic geometry of this faucet is not only beautiful, but also seamlessly paired with 3D printing nozzles, making the inside of the faucet open. The channel allows water to flow through the base.
Bill McKeone, manager of KALLISTA design studio, revealed that this kind of manufacturing gives his team complete freedom to design. “Designers usually need to think about a manufacturing process, and they must design around this process,” McKeone said. “By choosing to produce this faucet through 3D printing, we have opened up our own limitless design possibilities. The breadth of 3D printing materials and technology allows us to freely create a unique and functional faucet that is impossible with the traditional manufacturing process.”
In terms of cost, the current 3D printing technology manufacturing products in the bathroom industry is very expensive. Although the cost of the 3D printing faucet manufactured by the KALLISTA brand is not known, the cost of the wash basin manufactured by a German company using 3D printing technology was 1129 to 1599. Between the euro, it is equivalent to between 8,800 and 12,500 yuan. In terms of raw materials, the KALLISTA brand uses stainless steel 316 powder material, and German companies use sand, so the manufacturing cost of 3D faucets will be higher.
3D printed wash basin
At present, the symbolic meaning of 3D printing technology in the sanitary ware industry is more important than economic benefits. It opens a door for the future development of the sanitary ware industry, especially in the field of sanitary ware customization, greatly shortening production time. The parts and components needed for sanitary products can be produced quickly. A representative of KALLISTA revealed: “These parts were completed within a few hours.”
The significance of 3D printing technology to the sanitary ware industry is not limited to shortening the delivery time, but changing the existing production system. At present, the main competitiveness of the sanitary ware industry is in addition to brand influence, as well as product quality competition. In the field of 3D printing, with the same raw materials and production equipment, the main factor affecting the competitiveness of enterprises in the future may be industrial designers. 3D printing technology gives industrial designers a broad space for development, and the competition of designers directly affects the competition of products in the market.
Although 3D printing technology is still in its infancy in the kitchen and bathroom industry, the future may bring unlimited possibilities for industrial designers in the kitchen and bathroom industry.