Molds, Dies, and tooling are good fits for metal additive manufacturing due to their smaller production volumes and lack of a rigorous qualification system. For many of their projects, the tooling sector does not have to answer to a strict regulatory body like the medical and aerospace industries do. The tooling sector also lacks the investment focused on Design for Additive Manufacturing that is seen elsewhere.

One partner saw an opportunity to use Powder Bed Fusion for an extrusion die to make one of their products. Yearly production volumes of roughly 100 dies coupled with a clear integration plan made additive a promising choice. While the original goal was strictly increased wear performance, they were able to improve throughput because of their redesign efforts.