Mercedes-Benz Trucks Turns To 3D Printing Technology
Production of spare parts for Mercedes-Benz Trucks should now be faster because Daimler is now harnessing 3D printing technology. It is the technology that some automakers are planning to use to make fully 3D-printed car parts in the near future. Daimler has however decided to go ahead with the use of the 3D technology on a small scale to print most of the on-demand Mercedes-Benz Trucks spare parts. What that means is that there is no need of old tooling being maintained in production facilities. With 3D printing, parts can even be created from old catalogs. The technology allows for economical production of parts in low volumes or the kind of spare parts that are no longer in mass production.
Daimler has previously been using 3D-printing to make parts for prototypes in excess of 100,000 per year. This time the technology is going to be used to manufacture plastic components for trucks. They will be making 30 different components which include spring caps, covers, spacers, control elements, clamps, air & cable ducts and mountings. 3D technology will be a game changer in the production of auto parts because the parts are made instantly. That makes other processes to complete faster while storage space requirements are also minimized. 3D-printed Benz Parts are already available and orders are being made.
3D printing is a technology that promises the next industrial revolution. In the future, carmakers might even find it better to produce their parts in more locations around the world. Instead of the few car and parts manufacturing plants most automakers have today, they might find it practical to 3D-print all their auto parts or even the cars in full at local dealers and auto shops. The 3D printers and the required software will all be available everywhere so most products will only need to be produced near their points of consumption. If the technology gets to that point, supply chain management will be totally eliminated. Although at the moment 3D printing technology could still be said to be almost going mainstream, it will still take some time before all manufactures abandon their current manufacturing processes.
With Daimler leading the way in terms of adopting 3D printing technology for the production of its spare parts, many automakers will definitely follow suit. Most of them at the moment are only at the initial stages of strategically planning the shift to the future way of making cars and all their components. Early adopters of the technology will definitely start reaping the rewards that will make them more competitive in the market. So at some point everyone will be forced to use it if they have to remain in business.
3D printing is expected to be one of the most disruptive technologies that might trigger new business models that will be more efficient. In some other industries, consumers themselves will probably at some point be able to produce whatever they will need at home. Now that Daimler is already using the technology to make some auto parts, it will probably not take so long before we see a fully 3D-printed Mercedes Benz car. Staring using it on a small scale as they are currently doing is probably the most practical way to start making the shift early enough ahead of other carmakers.