What Would Hybrid (Combined Additive and Subtractive) Prototyping Look Like?

26 June, 2014

I recently discovered a new video today which shows a relatively recent Hybrid Prototyping metal sintering machine in action. It’s fascinating to watch:


The machine you’re seeing here is the Lasertec 65 hybrid prototyping machine produced by DG Mori.

Hybrid Prototyping Machines are a combination of additive (3D printing) and subtractive (CNC milling) prototyping processes, meaning they’ll build surfaces up and then carve them back down to create the best possible finish.

Manufacturers have been experimenting around with hybrid prototyping technology for a while as a way of addressing the surface finish issue on existing available 3D printed materials. The mechanism seems complicated to calibrate and run, but it does look like consistently better results than with traditional polishing or chemical treatments. There have even been several hybrid prototyping machines introduced to the market over the past year.

Will this technology catch on? I suppose that all depends on how quickly developers are able to make progress in other fronts (such as materials research) for making finer surface finishes for additive manufacturing.


Jack Meyer

Bespoke jewellery designer, and specialist in jewellery CAD/CAM and emergent technologies that affect jewellery.

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2 Comments What Would Hybrid (Combined Additive and Subtractive) Prototyping Look Like?

  1. Helo there! Do you know if they make any plugins to
    safeguard against hackers? I’m kiknda paranoid about losing everything I’ve worked hard on.
    Any tips?

    1. Hi Jamison:

      In all honesty, protection against having your data stolen is not within any sort of design program, but rather more in how you store your data itself.

      There are things we can do to images to encourage copy-protection, and ways we can make files more difficult to edit, and we can be clever about where and how we store our files, and how we share information with others. But none of these things are really normally built into the software itself, and I’ve not yet encountered a plug-in which adds any more to this subject.

      Overall though, I’ve found that theft deterrence works far better than theft protection, as the side effects of theft protection can be far more crippling to your ability to work and the effectiveness of theft protection is fairly dubious anyway.

      If I were you, I’d go Google searching into data security, file encryption, secure data storage, secure file sharing, and copyright law. That would do more for you than any plug in would.

      While I appreciate this may not have been the answer you were looking for, I hope that at least it points you in the right direction.



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