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As it currently stands, the only way of making metal parts in small and medium volumes is through the use of CNC machines, which is a fast and accurate yet wasteful method. In fact, 90-95 percent of the metal blocks purchased for this purpose are ultimately thrown out.

3D printing (also known as additive manufacturing), on the other hand, allows for a less wasteful process and extremely geometrically flexible products, but cannot produce the necessary surface finishes. Until now, there’s been no way to use the most beneficial aspects of each process by combining them into one system. This is where Hybrid Manufacturing Technologies comes in, a company that has introduced the first-ever commercial system that integrates the best of both worlds.

As the CEO of Hybrid Manufacturing Technologies, Dr. Jason Jones offers a detailed explanation as to how exactly their machine works, gives examples of several interesting use cases and argues that the system itself represents the ability to overcome the biggest hurdle that faces 3D printing today. “Additive [manufacturing] has been developed in isolation from mainstream manufacturing…by combining it with CNC machines, there’s automatic uptake into mainstream manufacturing, which is exciting,” says Dr. Jones.

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