Mantle Unveils New Tooling Applications and Customers

  • Westminster Tool reduces lead time for a steel prototype tool by 50 percent by eliminating more than 110 hours of labor and machine time, thereby allowing its medical device OEM customer to accelerate product development
  • Mantle announces new customers adopting Mantle technology, including Spectrum Plastics Group, a DuPont Business; Heyco Products, a Penn Engineering company; and General Pattern

Mantle, the leader in metal 3D printing technology for toolmaking, today revealed new customers and several new case studies that illustrate how customers are automating their toolmaking with Mantle technology.

Mantle’s precision metal 3D printing technology is revolutionizing tooling component production by reducing the time and cost to produce high-quality tools, molds, and dies. Mantle’s technology uniquely meets the accuracy, surface finish, and tool steel property requirements of toolmaking while enabling unique tooling geometries and reducing skilled labor requirements.

Pushing the Boundaries in Medical Device Tooling
Westminster Tool, a comprehensive injection mold builder with a specialization in class 101 medical device tooling, acquired the inaugural shipment of a Mantle 3D printer in June 2022. Since then, the company has consistently identified new applications and tested the flexibility of what can be achieved with Mantle’s technology.

Westminster Tool recently partnered with a prominent medical device manufacturer to print a complex set of mold inserts so the OEM could quickly mold production-representative plastic parts to validate the material. With Mantle, Westminster Tool produced the steel mold inserts in just four weeks. Westminster Tool estimated it would have taken eight weeks with traditional manufacturing to build the same set of inserts, thereby allowing its customer to accelerate its product development process. The printed tools required only minor finishing and reduced labor and machining time by more than 110 hours. The H13 inserts had more than 40 swipe-by shutoff conditions and contoured parting lines, and demonstrated the ability of Mantle’s technology to be used for demanding, complex inserts that would typically require extensive time from toolmakers to produce.

A Mantle system being shipped from Mantle headquarters to Spectrum Plastics Group. (Photo credit: Mantle)

Expansion with New Customers
Continuing the momentum in the field of medical device manufacturing, Mantle also revealed today that Spectrum Plastics Group, a DuPont Business and medical contract manufacturer, will be implementing the company’s metal 3D printing technology within its facilities.

Mantle also announced that Heyco Products, a Penn Engineering company specializing in wire protection and termination for a range of industries, has implemented Mantle’s metal 3D printing technology into its toolmaking workflows. As a leading manufacturer of thousands of complex plastic and metal components, high-quality tooling is critical to Heyco’s success.

“At Heyco, we pride ourselves on taking products from design through to volume production, which includes in-house prototype and production tooling. Mantle allows us to increase our toolmaking capacity and project speed by automating a portion of our toolmaking process, helping to maximize our skilled resources.” – Danny Anthony, Vice President of Operations at Heyco Products

Easing Labor Scarcity of Tool Makers 
Across manufacturing as a whole, especially in toolmaking, labor scarcity has emerged as a predominant challenge, hindering manufacturers’ efficiency and capacity to build tooling.

This slide was used as part of a large injection mold molding a transportation trim component. Printing with Mantle’s metal 3d printer saved General Pattern 40 hours of active toolmaker time and included knife-edge features that could not be printed with its other metal AM equipment. (Photo credit: General Pattern)

Recognizing the growing scarcity of skilled toolmakers, General Pattern, an injection molder with in-house tooling services and more than 100 years of experience, is addressing the labor issue by introducing Mantle’s 3D printer to automate its toolmaking processes and bolster capacity. The investment in Mantle underscores the company’s dedication to cutting-edge technologies and highlights its potential to alleviate the industry’s labor shortage. General Pattern anticipates the benefits of this investment to include heightened efficiency, decreased reliance on specialized labor, and improved customer service through faster and more efficient operations.

“Introducing Mantle into our operations has elevated our approach to toolmaking. With the simple press of a button, we can now effortlessly create tools, which completely changes our ability to tackle labor challenges and enhances our capacity to better serve our customers. Recently with a slide for a transportation trim component, for example, we skipped the finishing process entirely. Instead, we printed it, assembled it into the mold, and immediately began molding parts. This not only saved us the 40 hours of traditional toolmaker time typically required to build this slide, but also freed up my team to focus on other critical projects.” – Denny Reiland, CEO at General Pattern

“Mantle’s technology remains a game-changer in the toolmaking industry, consistently driving reductions in lead times and costs while addressing labor shortages. The latest deployments, with Spectrum Plastics Group, Heyco, and General Pattern, coupled with the ongoing success of our existing customer, Westminster Tool, underscore the growing adoption and effectiveness of our technology.” – Ted Sorom, CEO and Co-founder of Mantle

About Mantle

Mantle accelerates product development by simplifying how mold tool components are made. Mantle’s TrueShape™ metal 3D printing technology delivers the accuracy, surface finish, and tool steel properties required for demanding tooling applications. Tools made with Mantle’s technology have produced millions of parts while reducing tooling lead times and costs. Mantle is headquartered in San Francisco, California.

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