Quick Replacement Parts (Including Precious Ones)
19. March 2013
Shops that have additive manufacturing capability in-house can sometimes use this capability to quickly make replacement components for vital equipment. In some cases, that equipment might not actually be in-house itself. John Danko, president of Danko Arlington—a 92-year-old pattern maker, foundry and machine shop—recently shared the story of 3D printing fixing his daughter’s tricycle. While the component produced in this incident arguably was not critical (one girl might have disagreed), the story illustrates the kind of responsiveness to maintenance needs that additive manufacturing makes possible. For example, just consider the extent to which a 3D printer might be able to take the place of having to order or inventory legacy spare parts.