3D Printed Jewelry: Jewelry Manufacturing Made Efficient
Posted on April 28 2017
3D Printing Jewelry: Why Aren't You Doing It?
Jewelry manufacturing has all the telltale signs of being the next industry to see a major overhaul thanks to the manufacturing unicorn that is 3D printing. One look into the current landscape of jewelry manufacturing and it’s pretty easy to see that this industry still using quite archaic methods for prototyping and most importantly for the manufacturing process.
Old Habits Die HardDesigners, crafters, and hobbyists within the world of jewelry creation all have similar methods of production centering around a hands on or analog approach in regards to crafting and applying the finishing touches to a piece of jewelry. This can be a time-consuming method with little return on investment, with profit margins being some around 4.5% for the typical US jewelry store (ibisworld.com). Larger jewelry chains such as Tiffany’s have U.S. margins hovering somewhere around 20%. This means that 80% of the price tag on most jewelry items are allocated for the cost of production. In walks the unicorn that is 3D printing and here we stand today.
3D printing jewelry is still in its infancy, therefore, manufacturers still have quite a bit to discover regarding the process. 3D printing in the realm of jewelry manufacturing began as an answer to the expensive process that manufacturers have used for years centering around building a mold then using that to create metal versions with a blowtorch. This then evolved into utilizing 3D printing to print the actual gold or platinum.