3D printing jewelry is far from being a mainstream industry, but its growing at a steady pace. Some people see it as a novelty, while others see it as a massive opportunity. What is to you is something that you need to decide on your own.
What follows is an introduction to 3D printing jewelry and what it is. By the time you are done reading this, you will have a way better understanding of what’s 3D printing jewelry.
Direct 3D Printing Jewelry
3D printing jewelry is possible with SLM (selective laser melting) or DMLS (direct metal laser sintering). 3D printers that use these technologies can directly print all sorts of jewelry from various metals.
There is no limit to what you can create with direct 3D printing. Some of the other advantages of direct 3D printing jewelry include:
- Anyone can create their own unique, custom designs.
- It’s fast, easy and convenient. Most of these 3D printers are pre-assembled. Just load the printing file and they’ll start printing .
- It produces top quality jewelry in all patterns and styles.
- You get to set your prices.
- You can charge people even for your designs.
- Each piece of jewelry you produce can be custom made.
But like most other things, there are certain downsides associated with 3D printing jewelry.
- It’s not cheap. The 3D printers used for jewelry 3D printing are quite expensive. Also, the 3D printing metal powder is way more expensive than regular plastic or other types of filaments commonly used with 3D printers.
- Turning customer’s drawings into printable files can be time-consuming. That also increases the final price of the 3D printed jewelry.
The Design Process
As just mentioned, the design process can be quite time-consuming. That is why you need to find and use a great piece of CAD software. Some of the most popular CAD programs for designing jewelry include Firestorm CAD software, RhinoGold, 3D Design, and Matrix. Each comes with a set of powerful design tools suited for modeling jewelry, a large selection of components for combining, realistic images of the designed models, and a short learning curve.
In case you can’t afford a suitable 3D printer, it doesn’t mean you can’t be in this business. On the contrary, you can run a successful 3D printing jewelry business without owning a single piece of equipment.
Several 3D printing jewelry companies allow you to upload your 3D prints on their clouds and use their 3D printers to print your designs. Of course, you need to cover their printing fee. But other than that, no one can even know that you don’t own any 3D printers.
We live in an age in which young people want to stand out, to be unique. 3D printed jewelry gives them exactly that, to create and wear their jewelry or jewelry designed by someone else, but for them, and them only. Is this a billion-dollar opportunity? Well, you never know unless you give it a shot.