Additive manufacturing: how to manage the post-production phase

In recent years, we have witnessed a steady evolution of additive manufacturing, i.e. the technology to produce 3D objects by adding plastic (plastic additive manufacturing) or metal (metal additive manufacturing) material layer by layer, following a computer-generated model using CAD.


The additive manufacturing industry has expanded both in terms of popularity and frequency of use, and in terms of new techniques and materials available, leading more and more companies to approach this type of processing.

The increasingly important presence of additive manufacturing and 3D printing within industrial production cycles has thus shifted the focus from use for prototyping purposes to large-scale production goals.

The versatility of this new object-making system has offered a wide range of benefits to companies, making it one of the most high-impact solutions for industrial environments. The use of additive manufacturing machines, in fact, enables the production of components, semi-finished or finished products with several advantages, including:


  • Reduction of production costs: The technique of additive printing makes it possible to reduce raw material consumption, lowering the unit costs of the component to be produced.
  • Diminuzione degli scarti di lavorazione: I processi di produzione additiva permettono di eliminare scarti e sfridi, in modo da ottimizzare la lavorazione.
  • Increased production speed: Due to the different processing paradigm, additive manufacturing techniques allow complex geometries to be obtained by significantly reducing machining times, thus speeding up the production of complex workpieces.
  • Fewer constraints on the type of processing: Because CAD models can be modified more quickly and components with complex shapes can be produced, additive manufacturing with metals or plastics allows 3D designs to be produced and changed relatively quickly.

The need for post-processing interventions

Given the many advantages and the evolution of this mode of production, post-production techniques also had to improve and become increasingly sophisticated.

Indeed, due to inherent limitations in the additive processes of printing technologies, objects obtained through additive synthesis may have a surface finish that is not suitable for the required quality-functional standards. For example, print residues and surface roughness could alter the aesthetic appearance of the printed component.

This is why additive 3D printing production often requires post-production work to make the component fit the technical and aesthetic requirements of the project.

Precisely in order to address this problem, we recommend incorporating post-processing machinery within the processing cycle to optimise the product, make it uniform, and resolve those minor aesthetic defects that can occur during printing.

Post-printing solutions devised by Norblast

Over the years, we have researched, implemented and improved post-processing solutions to support additive printing processes performed with metals and plastics.

Our new 3D-Printing Line offers manual or automatic solutions for the 3D printing post-production process, with customised machinery for cleaning inner channels, surface finishing and roughness reduction on components produced with all Additive Manufacturing technologies (SLS, MJF, SLM, EBM, FDM and Binder Jetting). All this is done to optimise the final product and always guarantee quality and finish that meet design standards.

We design machines that respect the products and are able to process fragile components, with pins, thin walls, channels, holes or undercuts to always achieve the expected results in terms of quality, time and cost.

Discover our solutions for the post-processing of components produced by 3D printing and additive manufacturing and find the solution that best suits your needs!