Connex 3 Printer, More Than Just Color

by Kevin Quach

Stratasys recently released a new full color 3D printer called the Connex 3.  Now if the idea of having a full color Polyjet printer is exciting to you, then that’s GREAT.   However, there is much more to this awesome machine than just simply colors. What is it you ask? It’s the fact that there are three material bays working together, creating epic results.  Some quick background information: the Connex 3’s predecessor, the Connex 2, was capable of printing two materials at once. This ability lets it utilize Digital Materials, or basically new materials that are set with the parameters you give it.  Essentially you can get over 100 different materials with the Connex 2.

The Connex 3 can get up to 500 different materials.  Let that sink in your innovative mind for a second.

Do you want to make something with an over-molding process to simulate rubber handles? Done.
How about a colored translucent material for lenses? Done.
How about getting both the overmolding with the colored see-through rubber like material?  D-O-N-E.

Take simple prototypes, concepts, or mockups to the next level, then, take them to the level after that with Connex 3.  Aerospace can create a flight stick with rigid, clear housings for electronics, then colored rubber materials to simulate the buttons.  Stress analysis can be printed with reds to visually simulate the high stress areas and blues to show the low stress points.  Animation studios can utilize the colors to print out their final model rather than taking the hours needed to finish and paint a printed part.  Companies now have the ability to print out a photo realistic mock up of their end model, like this football helmet:

If you want to go and play around with some of the possibilities, check out this link to build your own 3D partI was able to customize my own gear and here’s what it looked like:Connex Builder 

As always, if you want more information about this printer or anything else that Stratasys offers feel free to contact GoEngineer!


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