HP hopes 3D will revive flagging printer business – and its sites in Vancouver and Corvallis

. You can change the location at any time. Change your current location HP hopes 3D will revive flagging printer business – and its sites in Vancouver and Corvallis Updated on June 17, 2016 at 2:49 PM Shane Wall, HPs CTO, in the kitchen area of the companys newly expanded Vancouver office. Hes holding a … Continue reading “HP hopes 3D will revive flagging printer business – and its sites in Vancouver and Corvallis”

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HP hopes 3D will revive flagging printer business – and its sites in Vancouver and Corvallis

Updated on June 17, 2016 at 2:49 PM

Shane Wall, HPs CTO, in the kitchen area of the companys newly expanded Vancouver office. Hes holding a flexible plastic ball created by its 3D printers.

Imagine youre at the auto shop with a broken-down car. Its a relatively minor problem, the mechanic says, but the little plastic part you need isnt in stock. So you wait a few days. What choice do you have?

In the future, there might not be any waiting. The mechanic will call up the part you need on the office computer and send it to a nearby printer, which will make something on the spot thats as dependable and precise as an item from the old-fashioned factory.

Thats been the dream of 3D printing for years, but its been elusive. Existing printers are too slow, their products too fragile, to do much more than turn out prototypes for design engineers. So 3D printing, a booming market a few years ago, has stalled.

HP Inc. thinks it has the technology to fulfill the promise. The company is taking inkjet technology invented decades ago in Corvallis and repurposing it for a new era, adapting the print heads on your desktop printer to produce a physical product instead of a document or a family photo.

All 3D printing is is 2D printing, over and over, said Shane Wall, a longtime Intel executive, now HPs chief technology officer.

HP, a new company created last year when Hewlett-Packard Co. split in two, is based in Silicon Valley. But the key engineering and design work for its 3D printers takes place in Corvallis and in Vancouver, where Wall works.

With sales of conventional printers plunging – HPs printer group revenue fell 16 percent in the first half of its fiscal year – the company hopes 3D printing can revive the business. The first of HPs new, Jet Fusion 3D printers is due later this year.

A lot of the future, long-term brand power of the company is located here in the Northwest, Wall said.

HP is growing again in east Vancouver and opening up about its regional operations following a decade of layoffs and secrecy.It unveiled a new class of 3D printers last month, which HP promises will be 10 times faster and half as expensive as competing technologies. BMW, Nike and Johnson & Johnson all signaled interest in the $130,000 machines.

: Drawing on HPs expertise in inkjet printing, its 3D printers can print with a variety of materials at speeds HP claims are 10 times faster – and half the cost – of existing 3D printers.

: Industrial prototypes and low-volume manufacturing. In time, HP hopes 3D printing will enable on-demand production of manufacturing, reducing the need for shipping and warehouses.

: HPs Jet Fusion 3D 3200 printer costs $130,000, or $155,000 with additional features.

: HP is engineering print heads and researching materials in Corvallis, and designing the printers themselves in Vancouver.

HPs 3D printers are conceptually similar to its inkjets, with a print head passing over a specific area, depositing material in precise locations. Standard printers spray ink – 3D printers leave a resin or other material, then add layer upon layer to create a physical object.

By drawing on its inkjet technology, HP says it will eventually be able to mix materials and colors in a way other printers cannot so it can print an entire product from scratch – not just pieces. Soon, HP says, the printers will print some of their own components.

It certainly looks promising. I know customers are excited to get their hands on it, said Weston Twigg, who tracks the 3D printing market for Pacific Crest Securities in Portland.

3D printing technology has plateaued, according to Twigg, because products made by the existing generation of printers dont have the strength and detail that manufacturers want. Sales at an industry leader, 3D Systems, were growing by more than 50 percent annually just four years ago but were flat in 2015 – and Twigg expects they will fall slightly this year.

That leaves an opening for HP or others with innovative new printers, according to Twigg. But he cautioned 3D technology is still a long-term bet, with years of development work to be done before the printers become a widely used tool.

They have to keep the expectations realistic, Twigg said. Itll take a while for it to be a meaningful part of their business.

HP once had thousands of employees in both Vancouver and Corvallis and was among the Silicon Forests largest technology employers. Each site lost jobs as manufacturing moved overseas and the printer market declined, hamstrung by falling demand for printed material.

The struggling company split to separate its business services division – now called Hewlett-Packard Enterprise – from its fading computer and printer business, HP Inc., which inherited most of its operations in the Northwest.

HP refused to discuss its Northwest operations during its layoffs, and even now wont say how many people it employs in the Northwest (Observationally, it appears there are still more than 1,000 people in Corvallis and hundreds more in Vancouver.) But at least its talking.

As HP rolls out its inkjets, the company is hoping customers will demonstrate its printers capabilities and employees to help engineer them. So its raising its profile.

The tech world has changed. Open is definitely advantageous in terms of getting the world to collaborate, said Steve Nigro, HPs president of 3D printing. A 34-year HP employee, Nigro started out at the company working on its first color, thermal inkjet.

HP has expanded its Vancouver site with a new office equipped with a lot of contemporary tech amenities, including an open kitchen area and outdoor patio. Nigro said HP contemplated moving from the suburbs to Portland, the way many other Silicon Forest companies have, but needs its engineers to be close to labs and testing rooms in Vancouver.

As HP works to build a new business – and a new company – Nigro said it intends to be more forthright and more visible.

We want to get the word out about some of the really cool stuff going on in the Northwest, he said.

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Hewlett-Packard And 3D Printing The Road To Redemption

3D printing is an industry with a checkered past and a promising future.

HP is a company with a checkered past and a promising future.

With HPs new 3D printing initiative, the road to redemption is at hand for both 3D printing and HP.

HP (NYSE:HPQ) presents an interesting investment thesis. It has the combination of a modestPE ~8, areliable dividendat more than 3% and an interesting suite of businesses which are being managed aggressively with an eye to growth. I recently initiated a small position in the stock which I hope to grow on market pullbacks into a core position as its initiatives gain traction over time.

HPs path to this point has traveled an unusually serpentine route. Its future is tied to 3D Printing which has also forged a sinuous path.

3D Printing is an industry with a checkered past and a promising future.

Just as the House of the Rising Son has been the ruin of many a young man, so has the allure of 3D printings growth and profit served as the ruin for many investors portfolios. The lead paragraph to a February 2015 Barrons follow-up article tells the story:

A year ago, 3-D printing companies were poised to rebuild the world. Today, their stocks have been flattened. Much of the losses have come in the wake ofBarronscover story, which warned about the frenzy forming in the 3-D space (Beware 3-D Printing!March 10, 2014).

In 2013, 3D Systems (NYSE:DDD) stock was trading in the$90s. It fell all the way to the high single digitstoward the end of 2015. It has since partially recovered and its price at close on September 23, 2016, was $16.40.

Stratasys (NASDAQ:SSYS), the other publicly traded 3D printing company giant by 3D printing standards,traded above $130 in early 2014. It backed down to the mid teens in January 2016, recovering into the $20s. Stratasys price at close on September 23, 2016 was $22.03.

So what was it that caused 3D and Stratasys to fall so far and so quickly? No doubt there were many contributing factors. One that seems to always come to the fore is that the industry was over-hyped and got ahead of itself. According to the above referenced Barrons article:

…expectations were far too optimistic about how quickly 3D printers could gain widespread acceptance. The whole industry was benefiting from so many people just discovering (3D printing) for the first time, says Brian Drab, an analyst at William Blair. And every media outlet was publishing an article on 3D printing. Then, when the hype started to wear off a little bit, companies needed to step up andspend.

3D sets out the following as its explanation of Stratasys most recent January 2016 price drubbing, losing 33% in a single month. It noted:

There is little doubt that the 3D printing hype train was being driven by the need to sell 3D printers to new users, which was great for the companies in the short term, but left both Stratasys and 3D Systems looking like they were taking advantage of their customers andholding a surplus of unsold 3D printers.

Enough already about the 3D industrys checkered past. Its future, particularly with HP as a major new player in the industry, is the more interesting important point for this article.

HP, Inc. is a company with a checkered past and promises a bright future.

I consider HP to be the less techie, supposedly less growthy, remnant of Hewlett-Packard. Hewlett-Packard has a storied past as perhaps Silicon Valleys first garage tech startup. It traces its roots back to the1930s.

In 1999, Hewlett-Packard hired Carly Fiorina as CEO. Soon after Hewlett-Packards shares were skewered in the 2000 tech rout. In response, Fiorina sought to engineer a recovery by doubling down on Hewlett-Packards PC business and merging with one of its fiercest PC competitors, Compaq, Inc. The mergerclosedin 2002.

Her big idea was a highlycontroversialmove from the start. Fortune Magazines2011 negative assessmentof the deal is particularly brutal. The article explains in grueling detail why the deal was a horrible one for Hewlett-Packards shareholders. It concludes that it:

…was a big bet that didnt pay off, (it) didnt even come close to attaining what Fiorina and HPs board said was in store. At bottom, they madea huge errorin asserting that the merger of two losing computer operations, HPs and Compaqs, would produce a financially fit computer business. The irrefutable evidence on how wrong they were is contained in the two companies own merger proxy, which precisely laid out the healthy operating margins that the combined company expected to be earning in its 2003 fiscal year…

The Fortune article goes on to detail how these projections were proven to be wildly inaccurate. It further noted how the deal was massively dilutive for Hewlett-Packards shareholders and resulted in a $14.5 billion write-off. In 2005, after the board proposed reassigning certain of her duties,Fiorina resigned as CEO.

Hewlett-Packardsadventures in the distortion field of leadership dysfunctioncontinued through the Mark Hurd era and that of Leo Apotheker. In 2011 Meg Whitman took over and was able to restore some order, but in time she determined that the company was unable to prosper without some major reorganization.

She ultimately determined that aspinoffof the companys PC and printer business was the best path forward.

HPs 20-year look-back FastGraphs chart set out below gives a telling picture of the situation. The black line represents the stock price for combined Hewlett-Packard up through the closing date of the spinoff, after which it represents HP divorced from HPE. It shows the run-up in price followed by the 2000 crash in the tech industry. This is the background which set the stage for the momentous Compaq merger, ultimately culminating in the spinoff.

Finally in 2015, after years of turbulence and underperformance, Hewlett-Packard took Whitmans solution – it lanced the boil by spinning off legacy enterprise businesses intoHewlett-Packard Enterprise, (NYSE:HPE). This has allowed HP to march forward unencumbered to keep an undivided focus upon and to forge a profitable business out of its PC and its printing assets.

The supposedly less growthy HP is working diligently to maximize its considerable potential with concrete initiatives. It has no intention of resting in place.

HP has a three-fold strategy. Its first goal is to move its legacy PC business, if not growth, then at least to reliable profits. It intends to do this with traditional management techniques such as reducing costs and increasing revenues. This article will not dwell on its PC endeavors because I am focusing on its other two tactics.

These two initiatives relate to HPs 2D printing and copier businesses. HP recently announced a deal to acquire Samsungs copier business with the stated goal of advancing its own portfolio of printing and copier assets in a disruptive fashion. The rationale for the deal as stated by Hewlett-Packard:

The acquisitionpositions HP to disrupt and reinvent the $55 billion copier industry, a segment that hasnt innovated in decades. Copiers are outdated, complicated machines with dozens of replaceable parts requiring inefficient service and maintenance agreements. Customers are frequently frustrated with the number of visits needed to keep copier machines functioning. Today, HP is investing to disrupt this category by replacing copiers with superior multifunction printer (MFP) technology.

Part of HPs strategy revolves around its favored PageWide technology.HP touts this technplogyas providing superior speed, quality, reliability, cost and energy conservation.

HP further explains its belief that the Samsung acquisition opens an angle which will permit it to dominate this industry. In particular, it plans to do so by simplifying copiers which have otherwise become overly complicated.

Samsung has built a formidable portfolio of A3 MFPs that deliver the performance of copiers with the power, simplicity, reliability and ease-of-use of printers and with as few as seven replaceable parts. Integrating the Samsung printer business products, including their mobile-first and cloud-first user experience, with HPs next-generation PageWide technologies will create a breakthrough portfolio of printing solutions with the industrys best device, document, and data security.

We live in a world conflicted by the prospect of a paperless future. In such a world there are reasons to doubt whether the printing/copier segments can show high growth no matter how innovative ones approach may be. HP may, and I expect will, disrupt this industry and advance its already considerable portfolio. This will be to the good. However, it lacks pizzazz. It is hard to visualize it as doing more than solidifying HPs current operations, helping it to pay debt and maintaining and growing its dividends.

An excellent recent (last night) SA article describes a new imbroglioHP faces in the printer space. It should provide a pullback for those interested in this name. Another even more recentarticle gives a full rundown on itsdividend safety.Obviously SA is keeping this name fully covered.

With HPs new 3D printing initiative, the road to redemption is at hand for both 3D printing and HP.

HPs most promising path to future profits lies in its ability to leverage its 2D technology and market know-how into the fast growing 3D printing space. It has announced and is implementing an impressive initiative into the 3D printer, also known as the additive manufacturing market. This initiative is the secret sauce which makes HP a noteworthy investment prospect.

After decades of birthing,this 3D printing market is poised for phenomenal growth.3Ds recent near death experience as outlined above will hopefully add gravitas to its future at least in the next several years, hopefully heading off bubbles before they have a chance to form.

For several years, HPs possible entry into the 3D market has been a contributing factor to industry turmoil. Now that HP has made its announcement, it is clear that its impact will be significant albeit incremental, taking place over at least several years.

Investors Business Daily reported on HPs announcement with the following referencing HPs entry into the 3D marketplace:

HPs new lineupposes a threat to 3D Systems and Stratasys in price and speed, but the threat is not overwhelming, said Piper Jaffray analyst Troy Jensen.

We do believe the aggressive pricing HP is promoting could cause pipelines to shrink over the next couple quarters as customers review HPs printing capabilities, Jensen wrote in a report. But select printers from 3D Systems and Stratasys are better in certain applications, he said.

3D printing technology is beingincreasingly embracedby corporations, governments and universities. The market for 3D printers, including supplies, will grow 33% to $7.3 billion and will approach $10 billion in 2017, according to Wohlers Associates, which provides technical, market and strategic analysis on the 3D printer market.

Assuming HPs entry into 3D printing will be successful, which is in fact my assumption, it is not something which is likely to show up as a material boost to its quarterly numbers for a good number of quarters to come. The IBD article quotes RBC Capital Markets analyst Amit Daryanani to the affect that such a boost is not in prospect for either the remaining quarters in 2016 or in 2017.

Nonetheless, 3D printing is significant for HP. It has scale that no existing player in the market comes close to matching. Its commitment to this market gives the 3D market credibility at a time when credibility is sorely needed in this space. IfWohlersgrowth projections for the market turn out to be true then the 3D market will be producing growing incremental annual sales worth billions of dollars. If HP, as a major credible new player in the field, scoops up a material portion of these incremental sales, it will have achieved a meaningful new revenue source.

It is not clear that HPs inaugural 3D lineup as announced will put HP in a position to take significant market share of the 3D market. The advantages that its systems boast according to one reviewer include:

…access to thermal control will enable customers to govern 900 points on the print bed in real-time, ensuring consistent and quality performance during the entire operation. The printers themselves are said to feature three printheads with 10K nozzles, as well as an absurdly high resolution of 1200 dpi. The entire system is starting at a low industrial price of $145k, making HPs Jet Fusion 3D portfolios one of the mostpotentially disruptive devices to ever hit the professional-grade 3D printing market.

3D printing encompasses a multitude of different techniques using a variety of different materials to layer in its processes. The same article notes that HPs announced capabilities limit themselves to thermoplastics. Still in development are capacity to use other plastics, polymers and ceramics. There is no mention of metal. For now HPs systems will print one color only. 3D Printing has been evolving since the 1980s. HPs 2016 entry into the business has the advantage that it can design its systems to address and hopefully resolve known problem areas.

On the other hand, even an industry heavyweight (such as HP definitely is) cannot cover all the bases in one effort. It will take time for HP to have a representative lineup of 3D processes. An announcement that one is entering the 3D marketplace is a discrete event. The actual effective participation in this marketplace is a process that takes time.

HPs CEO addressed HPs late entry into the market as follows:

We will release a technology thats ten times faster than anything else in the market. We can produce parts with unbelievable density. Weve got 21 microns of accuracy. Thats the tenth of a size of a human hair or one blood cell count. Thats how fine we can print.

We can do it at a fraction of the cost because of ourtechnology, which leverages 30 years of inkjet based printing to produce a 3D printed object. We are changing that formula relative to traditional manufacturing on the vectors of speed, quality and costs that nobody else on the market has today.

In sum, HP is late to the party but it picked an opportune time so that it can effectively leverage its technical expertise and its scale.

HP is facing a challenging future. In todays overheated market, it is an investment with a low PE, massive scale in its chosen industries and commensurate technology.

By my assessment, it is premature for retired investors such as myself to open full positions in this name. However, it is paying a fair dividend. Its strategies for the future justify due diligence as it proves them out over time. As you gain confidence with the name add to your positions on pullbacks.

We are at on the threshold of a new dawn for 3D printing and HP is an excellent way to play this market. The new dawn will shine its beneficial rays on both.

Disclosure:I am/we are long HPQ AND MAY OR MAY NOT INITIATE ADDITIONAL POSITIONS IN THE NEXT 72 HOURS.

I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

Seeking Alpha pays for exclusive articles. Payment calculations are based on a combination of coverage area, popularity and quality.

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Materialise Helps Power HPs new 3D Printing

Materialise Helps Power HPs new 3D Printing Solutio …

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Materialise NV announced that HP Inc. selected its 3D printing software as a certified solution in HPs Open Software Platform to power the new HP Jet Fusion 3D Printing Solution. The new solution, now available for order, is compatible with Materialise Magics 3D Print Suite and allows for seamless integration of the new printer in the existing workflows of the Magics suite.

Materialise is collaborating with machine manufacturers to bridge the gap between 3D software and a wide range of 3D printers. The latest collaboration includes HP, which announced its new 3D printer today at RAPID, the annual 3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing event. Materialise designs Build Processor software that is certified by HP, which enables a seamless integration between software and printer. Materialises user-friendly Build Processor simplifies the 3D printing workflow, creating an improved user experience that helps customers get the most out of their HP 3D printer.

3D printing will bring tremendous benefit to manufacturing, helping to make it faster and less expensive, said Stephen Nigro, president of HPs 3D printing business. Matching the HP Jet Fusion 3D Printing Solution with Materialise software provides our customers the best-in-class solution for industrial 3D printing.

The synergy between the two companies resulted in an integration between Materialise software and the HP Jet Fusion 3D Printing Solution. Combining the HP record speed 3D printer with the Materialise Magics 3D Print Suite has the potential to make the widespread use of 3D printers in scaled up manufacturing environments a reality in the near future.

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HP Inc CEO We got into 3-D printing to get ahead of the inevitable manufacturing disruption

HP Inc. CEO: We got into 3-D printing to get ahead of the inevitable manufacturing disruption

Mad Money host Jim Cramer touched base with HP Inc. President and CEO Dion Weisler, who gave Cramer the latest on his companys 3-D printing projects.

Weisler said HPs goal is to disrupt the $12 trillion manufacturing market with its 3-D printing projects.

Partnerships with Nike, BMW, Johnson & Johnson and others allow HP to test and hone 3-D printing processes for various industries and products, Weisler said.

Published 6:22 PM ET Fri, 13 Oct 2017

Updated 7:30 PM ET Fri, 13 Oct 2017

HP Inc. CEO: 3-D printing & the inevitable manufacturing disruption

After Hewlett Packard split into two companies, Dion Weisler, the president and CEO of the newly formedHP Inc., crystallized his computer and printing companys ultimate goals.

Printing alone sounded stale, but 3-D printing presented much larger opportunities in mass production, personalization and new-age manufacturing, Weisler told CNBC on Friday.

This is why we got into the production side of 3-D printing. We werent terribly interested in home-based printing, the CEO toldMad Moneyhost Jim Cramer in an exclusive interview. We see this not as the $5 billion market it is today. We really want to disrupt a $12 trillion manufacturing industry.

Early on, HP Inc. launched 3-D printing technology for polymers, a material found in many plastics.

We said wed get into that business when we could disrupt it with speed, quality and cost, and we have that today, Weisler said.

The CEO said the rise of 3-D printing seemed to be following Moores Law, an observation made in 1965 byIntelco-founder Gordon Moore. Moores theory suggested that as computers and devices get smaller over time, their processors would get smaller and exponentially more efficient.

Weisler argued that, much like in Moores Law, 3-D printing will increasingly allow for both products and key manufacturing components like gears to be produced more cheaply and efficiently as time goes on.

HP Inc. is partnered with companies likeJohnson & JohnsonandNikefor the purpose of exploring the plethora of possibilities tied to 3-D printing, Weisler told Cramer.

Its a question of matching the right material science with the technology and finding exactly those kinds of very specific applications, the CEO said, adding that HP Inc. has built one such application with Johnson & Johnson, the massive medical and pharmaceutical supplier.

During back surgery, surgeons sometimes use spinal spacers meant to match the size of the patients spine. They often choose a few spacers from bags of 150 that most closely match.

Weisler said that 3-D printing and HP Inc.s multi-jet fusion technology helps surgeons create perfectly sized spinal spacers coated with nano-crystals, which make them safe for insertion into human bodies.

Just imagine the patient outcomes when you can do that, let alone the waste of having to throw out 140 of these things when youve selected just one of them, the CEO said.

AsHP Inc. builds out its ecosystem, which has now grown to 65 channel partners in over 170 countries, Weisler told Cramer that the revived company is just getting started.

Were selling real products, real technology, an incredible ecosystem of partners and real revenue, Weisler said. I guess this would make any venture capitalist ecstatic with what weve done in such a short period of time.

The CEO continued: Were going to find ways to not only democratize manufacturing in a way that hasnt happened since the assembly line was created more than 100 years ago, but its going to enable designers to design anywhere in the world, anything they can kind of imagine, and a manufacturer to be a manufacturer anywhere in the world, he said.

Watch Dion Weislers full interview here:

HP Inc. CEO: We got into 3-D printing to get ahead of the inevitable manufacturing disruption

Want to take a deep dive into Cramers world? Hit him up!

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HP and Deloitte team up on 3D printing services for manufacturers

HPandDeloitte Consultingannounced they are teaming up on 3D printing and digital manufacturing services. The alliance will enable HP to put more of its 3D printers in large-scale manufacturing environments as part of the digital supply chain.

The two companies will apply their digital operations experience to help enterprises accelerate product design and create more flexible manufacturing supply chains and production services such as prototyping.

The goal is to make manufacturing more efficient and accelerate time to market by using 3D printing for prototyping, thus reducing costs and eliminating waste. That could make large enterprises more competitive in the global economy. HP is the worlds biggest making of printers, but it is trying to extend that leadership into the new field of 3D printing.

The Fourth Industrial Revolution is upon us. No sector of the global economy is undergoing more radical transformation than the US$12 trillion manufacturing market, said Dion Weisler, president and CEO, HP Inc., in a statement. Companies investing in digital reinvention are poised to outpace their peers. Building on our disruptive 3D printing technology, together with Deloitte, we are focused on helping customers transform and win in this new era.

The alliance will combine HPs Jet Fusion 3D Printing solutions and tools, partner ecosystem, and heritage of driving digital industrial transformations with Deloittes global client reach and manufacturing relationships, digital operations experience, and supply chain transformation work for some of the worlds largest companies.

The digitalization of global manufacturing operations and practices will impact companies and consumers around the world, and 3D printing will play an important role in fundamentally changing manufacturing as we know it, said Punit Renjen, Global CEO at Deloitte, in a statement. This alliance comprises two exceptional brands and brings together HPs leading 3D printing platform with Deloittes digital manufacturing experience and global client reach.

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HP Designjet Color 3D Printer – Processing your STL file for printing

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HP Designjet Color 3D Printer – Processing your STL file for printing

Opening your STL file with HP Designjet 3D Software Solution:

Create an STL file using your CAD software. Refer to your CAD software help section for more information about converting your CAD drawings into STL files.

Open the HP Designjet 3D Software Solution.

Navigate to and select the STL file that you have created.

Layer resolution can be changed on the HP Designjet Color 3D printer. Changing layer resolution will effect surface finish and build times. Selecting a smaller layer resolution creates a smoother surface finish, but takes longer to build.

Selecting model interior fill style:

This establishes the type of fill used for the interior areas of the part. There are three types of model interior that you can choose from.

Used when a stronger, more durable part is desired. Build times will be longer and more material will be used.

This is the default model interior style and is highly recommended. Build times will be shorter, less material will be used and the possibility of part curl for geometries with large mass will be greatly reduced.

. This style allows for the shortest build times and lowest material usage but will decrease the strength of the part.

Support material is used to support the model during the build process. It is removed when the part is complete. Support styles will affect the support strength and build time of the print. SMART support is the default support setting.

May be used for most parts. Basic support uses a consistent spacing between support toolpaths.

Minimizes the amount of support material used, reduces the build time, and improves support removal for many parts. SMART supports use a wide spacing between toolpath rasters and change the shape of the support region. As the supports descend from the underside of the part feature to the base of the supports, the support region shrinks and transforms to a simpler shape to reduce the amount of material used and the build time. SMART supports are suitable for all parts, especially those with large support regions, and are the default style for builds using soluble supports.

The entire model is surrounded by support material. Typically used for tall, thin models.

Selecting the scale of your STL file:

Before you process a part for printing, you can change the size of the part within the build envelope. Every part has a pre-defined size within the STL file. After you have opened the file you can change the size of the part produced from the STL file by changing the scale. The scale always relates to the original STL file size definition.

For example: a cube that is defined as 2 X 2 X 2 can be built to be 4 X 4 X 4 by simply changing the scale to 2.0. If after changing the scale to 2.0, you decide that a size of 3 X 3 X 3 would be preferred, change the scale to 1.5 – the scale relates to the original size of 2.0, NOT the resulting 4.0 from the first scale change.

Click within the scale input box to type a scale of your choice.

Selecting the orientation of your STL file:

The Orientation tab has an expanded preview window. It provides options for viewing a part, measuring a part, orienting a part, processing a part and viewing the layers of a part. How a part is oriented in the preview window will determine how the part is oriented when it prints.

Orientation impacts build speed, part strength, surface finish and material consumption. Orientation can also affect the ability of HP Designjet 3D Software Solution to repair any problems with the STL file.

You can choose to auto orient your part, which allows HP Designjet 3D Software Solution to determine the best orientation for the part for the fastest build time and least material usage, or you can manually change the orientation of your part.

Closely related to material use. A lesser amount of supports will allow for a faster build speed.

Another factor affecting build speed is the axis orientation. The printer can build faster across the X-Y plane than it can along the Z axis. Orienting a part so that it is shorter within the modeling envelope will produce a quicker build.

A model is stronger within a layer than it is across layers. Depending upon what features you want your part to demonstrate, you may need to orient your part to have its greatest strength across a specific area. For example a tab that needs to be pressed would be weakest if you are applying pressure across layers.

Much like orienting for strength, how the part is oriented will determine how the surface finish will look and allow the printer to provide the smoothest finish for a specific area. For example, if building a cylinder, orienting the cylinder upright will have a smoother surface finish than building it on its side.

It is possible for an STL file to have errors while appearing to be trouble free. If the STL file contains errors, HP Designjet 3D Software Solution may have problems processing the file. HP Designjet 3D Software Solution has the ability to automatically correct some STL file errors. How the part is oriented can impact this automated repair function.

button is found on the General, Orientation and Pack tabs.

button, HP Designjet 3D Software Solution will add the file that is currently in the preview window (General tab or Orientation tab) to the pack preview window (Pack tab).

If the file in the preview window has not been processed for printing, processing will occur before the file is added to the pack. Each additional click of the

button will add another copy of the file to the pack.

button is found on the General, Orientation and Pack tabs.

HP Designjet 3D Software Solution will now process all parts in the pack and create a CMB file from which the printer will print the parts.

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HP Could it buy Stratasys accelerate 3D printing drive?

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If HP acquired a 3D printing rival like Stratasys it could speed up its business by a year or two. An HP exec floated the partner or buy concept last week.

ByLarry DignanforBetween the LinesSeptember 22, 2015 — 20:17 GMT (04:17 GMT+08:00)Topic:Printers

Hewlett-Packard Inc. could acquire Stratasys and speed up its 3D printing roadmap by a year or two, according to an analyst.

When you look at the industries that 3D printing is destined to disrupt in the future, the list is long and distinguished. Here is our take on the state of 3D printing, the ways companies are using it today, and how its going to revolutionize the future of business.

The idea of HP, which is splitting into two companies, buying a 3D printing rival isnt new. But the chatter got a boost Tuesday from Jefferies analyst Jason North.

HP Inc. said its open to make acquisitions and partnerships in 3D printing and that theyll eventually need about 4 different 3D printing technologies. 3D printers are mostly sold via resellers that have exclusive relationships with a specific 3D printing OEM. Since HP will target the middle-to-high-end of the market, we dont think that the general IT distribution channel or the high-end specialty printer channel where HP is well positioned will be of much use unless a substantial of amount of end-customer and reseller education occurs. An acquisition would likely expedite HPs ramp by 1-2 years.

And given the strength of Stratasys reseller network, North concluded that company was the best fit. Stratasys also has most technology. 3D Systems would also be a contender on the technology front, but has a weaker reseller network. The 3D printing industry has had its struggles in 2015 following HPs news that it will enter the market. Consider:

Stratasys cuts outlook; says easy growth over for 3D printing

3D Systems stumbles: A sign of 3D printing woes or HP?

HP to enter 3D printing market in 2016: Will customers wait?

Following HPs split into a PC and printing business and an enterprise company, the company could go chase 3D printing rivals.

At HPs analyst meeting last week, Stephen Nigro, senior vice president of inkjet and Web solutions, said the company would be open to an acquisition. He noted there are at least nine different 3D printing technologies and some company will have to consolidate those to scale the industry.

Its a very dynamic industry right now. If you think about how we built our 2D printing business, it was built on ultimately three to four technologies. Some of that weve built organically and some of that we bought and some of that we partnered. As you think about this business going forward, were going drive it off organic innovation because we actually have some assets that will give us a fundamental advantage in the market. But as we understand the market, without a doubt well look at partnering. And if there is a kind of the right opportunity out there, we could even acquire. If you think about our 2D model, how weve built it over the years, thats probably not a bad roadmap of how we will build our 3D business.

3D Systems outlines additive manufacturing strategy, aims for turnaround

Get the best deal on the best MFP for a small business

Reviews of the week: From Mac upgrades to Windows 10 thin clients

HP expands its 3D printing, additive manufacturing footprint in Asia Pacific

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HP expands 3D printing portfolio

HP Jet Fusion 3D Printing Solution (Copyright: TCT Magazine)

This week the OEM has announced that it is accelerating its entrance into industrial 3D manufacturing with the release of a new printing solution and portfolio.

HP Inc has announced its new HP Jet Fusion 3D 4210 Printing Solution which has been designed for use in industrial 3D manufacturing. This solution will significantly lower overall operating costs, increase production volume capabilities, raise the break-even point for large-scale 3D manufacturing, and enable the industrys lowest cost-per-part (65 percent less than other 3D printing methods).

HP revealed that current Jet Fusion customers can pre-order the 3D 4210 Printing Solution upgrade today while new customers can purchase Jet Fusion systems now, with the option to pre-order the 4210 system upgrade.

HP has also announced the expansion of its Open Materials Platform with its new partners, Dressler Group and Lubrizol and revealed its three forthcoming 3D printing materials as well as the future availability of HP 3D High Reusability Polypropylene. These materials will broaden the uses and capabilities of HP Multi Jet Fusion technology and open a world of new high-volume applications.

The new 3D 4210 Printing Solution enables our customers to mass-produce parts using HPs Multi Jet Fusion technology for 65% less than other processes, and fully benefit from the economies of scale, said Ramon Pastor, General Manager of Multi Jet Fusion for HPs 3D printing business. HPs Jet Fusion 3D systems have now reached a technological and economic inflection point that combines the speed, quality, and scalability needed to accelerate manufacturings digital industrial revolution.

HPs new solution includes hardware and firmware upgrades for existing Jet Fusion systems to improve overall system efficiency and enable continuous operation. Customers who purchase this solution will also benefit from shared service contracts and significantly lower pricing on HPs engineering-grade 3D printing materials and agents.

The OEMs new additions to its collaborative materials partner ecosystem include the Dressler Group and Lubrizol.

With over 40 years of powder innovation and expertise, were thrilled to help HPs 3D materials partners on its open platform accelerate the development of thermoplastic powders for Multi Jet Fusion use, said Jan Dressler, managing partner at the Dressler Group. We see our contribution to the HP ecosystem as enabling 3D materials development that is incredibly precise and cost-effective, or as we call it, on the dot.

As a global leader in specialty chemicals, were excited to join HPs open 3D materials platform to help drive the digital manufacturing disruption being led by 3D printing, said Rick Tolin, President of Lubrizol Advanced Materials. Having access to HPs industry-first 3D Open Materials and Applications Lab and its wealth of cutting-edge tools, while collaborating directly with our customers, will help secure our place at the forefront of materials innovation and development into the future, while advancing the development of our Estane® Engineered Polymers product line.

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3D printings great mystery Wheres HP?

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3D printings great mystery: Wheres HP?

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3D printings great mystery: Wheres HP?

HP could roll out its 3D printing lineup tomorrow and theres a good argument that the company is too late. Perhaps Stratasys or 3D Systems is the next HP?

ByLarry DignanforBetween the LinesAugust 3, 2014 — 22:00 GMT (06:00 GMT+08:00)Topic:3D Printing: Building the Future

Hewlett-Packard CEO Meg Whitman in March said watching 3D print projects complete was like watching ice melt, that quality was lax and that her company solved both of those problems.

Whitmansriff on 3D printing was in response to a shareholder question at HPs annual meeting. Off script, Whitman said there would be an announcement in June about HPs 3D printing plans, which would address the enterprise market first.

Were still waiting. HP could roll out its 3D printing lineup tomorrow and theres a good argument that the company is too late.

Analysts are expecting HP to outline its 3D printing master plan some time in the fall, but its stunning how late the company is to the game. HP has prototypes in progress and a 3D printing pipeline of some sort, but it may want to start commercializing and marketing before its too late.

When you look at the industries that 3D printing is destined to disrupt in the future, the list is long and distinguished. Here is our take on the state of 3D printing, the ways companies are using it today, and how its going to revolutionize the future of business.

Perhaps HP plans to buy its way into 3D printing by acquiring Stratasys or another player. Perhaps HP truly does have technology that will leapfrog the industry. Perhaps HP has the scale to take its time to enter a commercial 3D market thats maturing quickly.

One thing is certain: The longer HP waits, the higher the stakes get. Its quite possible that in 3D printing a company like Stratasys or 3D Systems is the new HP. Stratasys, which has enterprise and consumer products for 3D printing, appears to be the most likely candidate to be the new HP.

ConsiderStratasys, which ownsMakerBotin the consumer space but derives most of its revenue from the enterprise, and has more than 50 percent market share in additive manufacturing and industrial systems. PricewaterhouseCoopers estimates that 67 percent of manufacturers are adopting additive manufacturing the hot spot for 3D printing in some way, with another 25 percent planning to use it.

HP needs to get going in the 3D printing market pronto. Heres what Cowen & Co. is projecting for Stratasys in the years ahead.

And Stratasys annual sales are expected to trail3D Systemsin 2014. Analysts are expecting 3D Systems revenue to be $713 million in 2014.

A problem-solving approach IT workers should learn from robotics engineers

Sometimes the most profound solution is to change the entire problem.

Now maybe a business approaching $1 billion a year in sales isnt enough to inspire HP, which is expected to have revenue of $110 million in fiscal 2014, but 3D printing gives the company something to talk about. HP has a hardware business under fire, a cloud transition to manage and needs growth to offset the challenges ahead.

Whats particularly crazy is that HP doesnt have an innovators dilemma about 3D printing. Its not like 3D printing will replace the ink-fueled market dominated by HP. The company has spent the last few years fixing messes left behind by its last two CEOs (Leo Apotheker, Mark Hurd), and may have been too occupied with restructuring to lead the 3D printing charge. Apotheker nuked HPs balance sheet with the acquisition of Autonomy. Hurd hit his numbers, looked like a superstar for a few years, but gutted HPs R&D spending.

Whitman has mopped up a lot of HPs messes, but the big question is whether the company has missed the 3D printing curve going forward.

ZDNets Monday Morning Opener is our opening salvo for the week in tech. As a global site, this editorial publishes on Monday at 8am AEST in Sydney, Australia, which is 6pm Eastern Time on Sunday in the US. It is written by a member of ZDNets global editorial board, which is comprised of our lead editors across Asia, Australia, Europe, and the US.

Previously on Monday Morning Opener

Now Microsoft knows what it has to do – but can it make it happen?

Will Apple bring developers to IBMs Watson ecosystem?

The future of computing is a battle for your personal information

Hybrid and private vs. public cloud strategies: Assessing the duel

Microsoft Surface Pro 3: New hardware but the same old questions remain

Amazons smartphone: One reason why it could be a contender (and its not the 3D)

Apples next big move: Capture three new ecosystems

3D Systems outlines additive manufacturing strategy, aims for turnaround

Get the best deal on the best MFP for a small business

Reviews of the week: From Mac upgrades to Windows 10 thin clients

HP expands its 3D printing, additive manufacturing footprint in Asia Pacific

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HP moves into 3D printing

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Stephen Nigro of HP unveils plans to roll out the HP Multi Jet Fusion 3D printer

Hewlett Packard said it is poised to revolutionize 3D printing with a new system that promises to speed up 3D printing while cutting costs attributed to the process.

Last weekHPannounced its Blended Reality ecosystem, the companys vision for the future of computing and 3D printing that is underpinned by HPs new Multi Jet Fusion technology and the companys Sprout immersive computing platform.

According to HP the system is up to 10 times faster than other 3D printing technologies and cut down printing cost as well by minimizing waste and reducing energy use.

As we examined the existing 3D print market, we saw a great deal of potential but also saw major gaps in the combination of speed, quality and cost, said Stephen Nigro, senior vice-president for inkjet and graphics solutions at HP. HP Multi Jet Fusion is designed to transform manufacturing across industries by delivering on the full potential of 3D printing with better quality, increased productivity and break-through economics.

HP plans to make its end-to-end 3D printing system available in 2016.

The Multi Jet Fusion 3D printer images entire surface areas, while conventional 3D machines image one point at a time. Using this method, the HP machine is able to achieve print build-up speeds that are at least 10 times faster than other machines in the market, according to HP.

The Multi Jet Fusion 3D printer has print bar looks much like the scanning bar of a typical 2D printer. However, the print bar on the HP machine is equipped with 30,000 nozzles that can spray 30 million drops a second of thermoplastics or other 3D printing solution. A proprietary multi-agent printing process also enables the machine to simultaneously apply multiple liquid agents for resiliency and uniform part strength in all three axis directions.

The Sprout computing platform combines scanner, depth sensor, high-resolution camera and projector capabilities in a single device. It allows users to accurately translate the attributes of physical items into the digital workspace, according to HP. The Sprout Illuminator is a projection system that scans and captures real-world objects in 3D.

The system also works as a collaborative platform as it allows users in multiple locations to collaborate on and manipulate a single piece of digital content in real-time.

While 3D printings roots can be traced to the 1980s, when Chuck Hull of 3D Systems Corp.pioneered the process of three dimensional objects, it was only in the last three years or so that the technology has gained widespread attention and application.

Pete Basiliere, research vice-president at technology research firmGartner Inc., estimates that there are 40 companies worldwide manufacturing and selling most of the 3D printers currently is use by businesses. More than 200 startups are developing and selling consumer oriented 3D printers around the world.

Solidscape printers developed by theStratasys Co. are considered among the leaders in the 3D printing space. The company sells printers that are able to jet materials at about 5,000 dots per inch x 5,000 dpi x 8,000 dpi.

Gartner predicts sales of 3D printers will reach 217,350 units in 2015, up from 108,151 in 2014, according. 3D printer shipments will more than double every year between 2015 and 2018, by which time worldwide shipments are forecast to reach more than 2.3 million.

End-user spending on material extrusion technology will increase from $789 million in 2015 to around $6.9 billion in 2018, according to the research firm. Overall, end-user spending on 3D printers is expected to increase from $1.6 billion in 2015 to around $13.4 billion in 2018 with technologies such as vat photopolymerization and material jetting leading this growth due to expanded acceptability within the consumer and enterprise markets.

The primary driver for the enterprise 3D printer market are the viability of 3D printing technologies for prototyping and manufacturing coupled with lower 3D printer costs, improved quality and a wider range of materials.

New providers are entering the market, sometimes directly, sometimes through crowdfunding campaigns, on what seems like a daily basis, Basiliere said. These providers are leveraging the expiration of early extrusion technology patents to make low-cost, low-priced devices targeted mainly at consumers.

HP is not a late entry into the market, according to one Canadian technology analyst. The company has been carefully preparing their strategy, said Evan Hardie, research manager for printers and hardcopy peripherals at IDC Canada.

He said 3D printing has been getting a lot of attention in the last five years mainly in industrial applications. IDC Canada has recently focused on two vertical markets where 3D printing is being used, namely the  healthcare and automotive spaces.

Hardie said IDC expects HP to focus its 3D printing efforts on the aerospace, automotive, architecture, healthcare and 3D print-for-pay providers or service bureaus with the launch of HPs hardware in 2016.

It is worth nothing that overall the 3D pritning market, including products destined for commercial environments along with lower cost devices used by hobbyists, is expected to exhibit string double digit growth as it continues to ramp uo over the next five years, said Hardie. The market has yet to reach maturity so the timing is good for entry by major traditional print vendors such as HP, with their own OEM products, or to potentially form sales alliances with established 3D printing manufacturers.

While niche uses and stunts like the printed gun may still dominate the headlines about 3D printing, an IDC Canada analyst says 3D printing is poised to emerge from a niche market dominated

Meg Whitman, the CEO of HP, told shareholders at its annual meeting in Palo Alto, Calif., that Hewlett-Packard was going to basically revolutionize the 3D printing space. HPs chief executive told shareholders that

3D printing may be still in its infancy in the market place but on Jan. 31 3D Printer World Expo will bring together the a wide-range of 3D printers and 3D printing professionals

Toronto-based journalist specializing in technology and business news. Blogs and tweets on the latest tech trends and gadgets.

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