MOERGESTEL, The Netherlands — Admatec is a manufacturing company who present themselves with no small amount of bravado. They advertise themselves as coming from the smartest country on the planet and their promotional videos are scored with a soundtrack that would feel more at home in a Michael Bay movie. Their video slowly pans over a facility of people in lab coats who are more photogenic than any engineer has a right to be.
Luckily, they appear to have something special on their hands with the Admaflex 130, their industrial-grade ceramic printer. It’s set to launch in September. With a price tag of about $85,000 it’s a far cry from the democratized, sci-fi utopia 3D printing promises us, but there’s a lot to be excited about here.
In addition to the typical prototyping one would expect with such a device, the printer can also make casters, micro reactors, medical implants and devices, dental hardware and jewelry. Jewelry is about the only advertised function that even suggests artwork, but if you’re let down by that you should take another look at the video. On cfile.daily we frequently gripe about the seams that keep showing up in clay printing. They’re more of an artifact of the process, rather than a deliberate style choice. This means that in a handful of years everything that’s being made today is going to look crude. That’s fine! It’s an emerging technology, but we keep anticipating the next step.
That step has been made, from what we can see. The components look as clean as if they were crafted by hand. The printer will support materials such as zirconium oxide, aluminum oxide, and fused silica at launch. In addition to that, the company boasts that the machine wastes very little. Excess material can be collected and used again in the next project.
We’ll be following this project with interest in the following months, but if anything similar crosses your paths until then, please let us know.
Do you love or loathe this use of contemporary ceramics? Let us know in the comments.