SLM Solutions and Burgmaier Strengthen Partnership In Tooling

Burgmaier introduced case-hardening steel 16MnCr5 to AM, and developed a hybrid-AM process using the SLM 280.  

Burgmaier introduced case-hardening steel 16MnCr5 to AM, and developed a hybrid-AM process using the SLM 280.  

SLM Solutions, an additive manufacturing (AM) company, and high-precision metal parts processor, Burgmaier, have been working together for more than three years, exploring part processing. The partnership is founded on the technical experience of both sides coming together to open new possibilities in the tooling industry and hybrid manufacturing, the companies report.

As the technology leader in metal part processing, Burgmaier actively seeks out innovations to push the industry forward and to create products of the absolute highest quality. With the help of SLM additive manufacturing technology, they have already improved the efficiency, design and manufacturing cost of various components, including AM cutting tools, manufacturing equipment such as nozzles or claws, and casting molds.

Burgmaier's 16MnCr5—a material for the tooling industry—combines a very hard surface with a ductile core, and various heat treatments can flexibly adjust its characteristics to the customer’s needs. Burgmaier has established a technique of hybrid manufacturing using various steels such as 1.2709 or 16MnCr5.

The introduction of case-hardening-steels to AM enables hard-wearing designs—from lightweight tools with flexible cooling channels to resistant and cost-efficient molds. The hybrid-manufacturing process includes a self-developed system to clamp various base bodies and a standardized approach to manufacture the parts additively in a SLM 280, enabling single-use and series production with high accuracy. Burgmaier achieves a positioning and repeating accuracy of fewer than 0.05 mm and a high-quality joint of the base body and the AM part. Burgmaier has invested in developing both innovations (16MnCr5 and hybrid-AM-process). 

“We are a partner-like solution provider for complex challenges with a high-quality standard. Curiosity and precision drive us to develop the right solution with and for our customers. We provide the advantages of additive, subtractive and hybrid manufacturing from a single source,” says Ken Krauss, director, Additive Manufacturing Burgmaier.   

At the heart of the partnership is the SLM 280. Its multi-laser, closed-loop powder handling has earned it the informal title of The Dual-laser Trailblazer, a system ideal for medium to high volume metal part production and prototyping, the companies report. The multi-laser systems can build at a faster rate than a single laser, and the bi-directional powder recoating boosts productivity by reducing overall manufacturing time. Material flexibility makes it a build companion for several industries, from aviation and aerospace to automotive and energy. 

SLM Solutions CEO Sam O’Leary points to Burgmaier’s experience and innovative thinking as a key factor in the success of the partnership.

“It’s a partner like that of Burgmaier that is a testament to the deep collaboration necessary to achieve extraordinary new heights of technological advancement. This is not a one-and-done story, but a series of success that we will continue to build upon, together,” says SLM Solutions CEO Sam O’Leary. 

Sources: Press materials received from the company and additional information gleaned from the company’s website.

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