3D printers deliver substantial cost savings in dental aligner manufacturing
SouSmile has invested in a trio of Photocentric Liquid Crystal Magna 3D printers to produce its dental aligners at scale. As Brazil’s largest direct to consumer invisible aligner company with a presence in 30 cities, SouSmile has sold over 5,000 cases since launching in November 2018 with 20% of customers coming through word-of-mouth. The 3D printing investment has allowed SouSmile to internalize production of its transparent aligners, making substantial cost savings whilst helping customers align their teeth at a fixed price in a straightforward and effective process.
“The Brazilian aligner market is relatively nascent and highly regulated, which made it difficult to procure high quality aligners at scale,” says Michael Ruah, co-founder, SouSmile. “That’s why we decided to invest in automated production early on. The challenge was finding industrial-scale printers at a reasonable price. We met Photocentric through an industry veteran and were very impressed not only by the solution they had to offer but also by the similarity in mindset.”
SouSmile’s cost per part fell 30% when it internalised production with the LC Magna, which is equivalent to about US $60k in monthly savings, or US $720k per year. More than 2,000 customers have finished orthodontic treatment at SouSmile, with a satisfaction rate of 4.87 out of 5 stars. The company is vertically integrated with an automated production facility that now has capacity to produce 1,500 aligners per day with three printers.
“We got quotes and tested almost every printer in the market for dental applications and no one matched the cost benefit. Photocentric LC Magna was the only printer we analysed that could produce 48 models in 90 minutes. The Magnas are extremely fast, accurate and have a great cost-benefit for both hardware and resin. No one else came even close.”
“There are huge opportunities for 3D printing in many sectors, and SouSmile has clearly made a shrewd investment in adopting 3D printing technology to enhance its dental aligner offering,” says Sally Tipping, Sales Director, Photocentric. “We’re delighted that our LC Magna 3D printer came out on top as a value proposition for them, delivering excellent results at speed whilst maintaining an affordable price point. They join dental companies around the world in seeing the benefits of LC Magna. We look forward to continuing our strong working relationship with SouSmile as they continue to grow.”
For more information about this project, visit: https://photocentricgroup.com/case-study-sousmile/
Photocentric is the inventor of LCD-based 3D printing, and an award-winning specialist resin and LCD printer manufacturer based in Cambridgeshire, UK and Arizona, USA. Building on its vision of enabling custom mass manufacture with its innovative 3D printing technologies using LCD screens, Photocentric’s large format LCD printer range includes Liquid Crystal Magna, which delivers significant speed, volume and cost savings to business around the world in a range of industries. Photocentric is a patent holder in visible light curing technologies and specialises in photopolymerisation, manufacturing an innovative range of photopolymer resins compatible with any printer operating from 355nm to 460mm.
For more information, visit https://photocentricgroup.com/.