Come See 3Diligent at Inside 3D Printing San Diego

This year has taken 3Diligent all over the country, from Los Angeles to Chicago to Pittsburgh and to finish up the end of the year, I’ll be traveling just a few hours south of the 3Diligent headquarters to speak at Inside 3D Printing San Diego.

Inside 3D Printing San Diego is a professional 3D printing and additive manufacturing event focused on the latest innovations in the space. The event will take place December 4-5 at the Convention Center.

I got to meet R2D2 at last year’s show. Excited to see if BB8 will be there this year!
I got to meet R2D2 at last year’s show. Excited to see if BB8 will be there this year!

On Tuesday, December 5th, I am scheduled to present “Metal 3D Printing – An Overview of What’s Here Now and What’s to Come.” In this presentation, I’ll provide an overview of the metal 3D Printing landscape along with the strengths, drawbacks, and applications for the metal 3D Printing technologies currently in market. Additionally, I will share my perspectives on emerging metal 3D Printing technologies, in particular desktop extrusion technologies like Desktop Metal’s Studio Printer and MarkForged’s Metal X, among others.

If you’re attending the show, please stop by my presentation and say hello. Or if you’d prefer, you can contact me to schedule a one-on-one meeting.

I look forward to presenting my thoughts on 3D Printing one last time for 2017 and hope to see some of you there! Stay tuned for more great news from 3Diligent in 2018!

This Week: 3Diligent Talks Metal 3D Printing at FABTECH in Chicago

It’s hard to believe that there are just under two months left in 2017! It’s been a busy year for 3Diligent and things aren’t slowing down as I head out this week to FABTECH in Chicago!

FABTECH is taking place November 6-9, at McCormick Place, where more than 1,700 exhibitors and 50,000 attendees come together to explore the latest industry products and developments related to metal forming, fabricating, welding, and finishing.

I’m excited to share that while at the show I’ll present “Making Sense of Metal 3D Printing” where I will compare the range of different metal printing technologies, offering my perspective on their pros, cons, and common applications. I’ll cover a range of technologies including laser melting, electron beam melting, binder jetting with metal infiltration, directed energy deposition, nanoparticle jetting, and metal plating of plastic or resin parts.

If you’re interested in attending, I’ll be speaking on Wednesday, November 8 at 10:30 am in room S402A. You can get more information on my speaking topic here. If you’re attending the conference, but not available to join my talk you can contact me here if you’d like to schedule a meeting.

Looking forward to seeing all of the innovation in metal at FABTECH and hope to see some of you at the show. If you won’t be attending, stay tuned for details on my quick drive south for my talk at Inside 3D Printing San Diego next month!

3Diligent Adds 3D Printed Silicone to its Capabilities, Meeting Demands of Design Innovators

3Diligent Expands Broadest Range of 3D Printing Materials and Processes  

Los Angeles, Calif. – November 1, 20173Diligent announced today it has added silicone 3D Printing to its capabilities and is now accepting requests for quote (RFQs) and is processing orders in the material.

“Being able to 3D print silicone is an exciting innovation. At 3Diligent we strive to meet the 3D Printing needs of all designers and are pleased to expand our range of elastomeric materials with silicone,” said 3Diligent CEO Cullen Hilkene.

Silicone 3D Printing is enabling innovative product development in many industries. One industry especially interested in silicone printing is medical. From realistic silicone models for surgical training to 3D printed bandages applied directly to human skin to exploration of artificial hearts, silicone 3D Printing has the potential for many life altering and lifesaving applications in medicine.

This announcement expands 3Diligent’s ability to deliver the market’s broadest range of additive materials and processes, which includes metal, plastics, composites and now silicone. 3Diligent offers 3D PrintingCNC Machining, and Molding and Casting across hundreds of machines and materials.

When submitting an RFQ on the 3Diligent website for silicone 3D Printing, designers will use the same streamlined process as for other materials and processes. Customers can log onto the secure portal, upload their CAD design files, and type silicone as their desired material. Using its proprietary software, 3Diligent will identify the optimal silicone fabrication solution, issue a quote, and fulfill the order upon acceptance.

For more information on 3Diligent and its capabilities, visit


You can see the original shape of this silicone printed part, in the shape of a human liver
You can see the original shape of this silicone printed part, a model of a human liver in miniature
Printed silicone has oustanding elastomeric properties
Printed silicone has oustanding elastomeric properties


About 3Diligent

3Diligent is an innovative rapid manufacturing services provider offering CAD/CAM-based fabrication services such as 3D Printing, CNC machining, and Casting. 3Diligent uses data science to analyze customer requests for quote (RFQs) and identify optimal rapid manufacturing solutions across its network of qualified partners to fabricate better parts faster. 3Diligent’s next-generation approach to rapid manufacturing allows customers to simplify their procurement and rationalize its service provider list. 3Diligent counts companies from Fortune 500 enterprises to startups among its customers. For more information, visit


3Diligent Selected by NIST-MEP to Deliver 3D Printing Webinar

I’m pleased to report that over the past several months, we’ve been working closely with NIST MEP on a nationwide webinar series to educate its members on 3D printing.

For those of you who aren’t familiar, NIST is the National Institute for Standards and Technology.  Its goal is to use measurement science to advance innovation and it is in charge of maintaining all of the physical measurement standards for science and industry. In fact, if you are a stickler for knowing the time down to the second, you can set your clock by the official US time clock, which is maintained by NIST.

NIST engages with industry as part of its innovation mission and the MEP – or Manufacturing Extension Partnership – is one of its programs to do that. MEP is a nationwide collection of manufacturing consultancies in each state that helps small to medium-sized manufacturers.

NIST MEP has a huge impact on small and medium-sized manufacturers, providing consulting and support resources from its network of 51 MEP centers across the country and through a network of 1,300 trusted advisors. In 2016 alone, more than 25,000 manufacturers have leveraged NIST MEP.

Per Connie Palucka of Catalyst Connection, one of the MEPs that helped develop the series with us:

"MEP helps manufacturers improve their operations, increase revenue and thrive in today’s technology-driven economy. We partnered with America Makes and 3Diligent to develop this webinar series to educate manufacturers about the benefits of additive manufacturing. Together, our goal is to de-risk this advanced technology, facilitate its adoption and help manufacturers realize the full value of additive manufacturing." –Connie Palucka, NIST MEP

The last organization to help sponsor the webinar series is the America Makes learning initiative, which is committed to sharing information about additive manufacturing and accelerating its adoption across the US.

3Diligent is an ideal education partner for NIST-MEP in development of this series given its tremendous breadth of additive manufacturing technologies, its status as a member of America Makes, and its belief in the NIST-MEP mission to support small to medium manufacturers.

As a company that supports enterprise customers from multinationals and independent inventors alike, we welcome the opportunity to share information about this incredible technology and provide small and medium businesses a means to access the latest and greatest additive manufacturing has to offer, in addition to our machining, casting, and injection molding capabilities.

The 3-part webinar series focuses on three major topics: introduction to additive technology, process tradeoffs and applications, and practical next steps for companies that are interested in using additive manufacturing technology for prototyping, tooling, replacement parts, or production applications.

The webinar series was initially shared with MEP centers in the greater vicinity of America Makes headquarters in Youngstown, Ohio and is currently being shared with clients from MEP centers in that area.  We are in discussions about expanding the program to other geographies in the coming months.

We're thinking of bringing this content to the rest of the manufacturing world via our own seminar series. Let us know if you would be interested in this content by filling out the form below so that we can let you know when we’ll be presenting the series.

3D Printing and Rapid Manufacturing Expert Joins 3Diligent as New Director of Sales

Top Sales Executive Joins 3Diligent Team with More Than Two Decades of Excellence in Providing Digital Manufacturing Solutions

Los Angeles, Calif. – September 29, 20173Diligent announced today that Anna Villano has joined the company as its new Director of Sales. In this role, Villano will provide account management, customer relations, project management, and business development expertise.

“We’re extremely excited to have Anna join our team.  As a veteran of the industry with more than two decades of rapid manufacturing experience, she developed a tremendous understanding of rapid manufacturing solutions and how to deliver customer satisfaction to engineers with exacting needs.  We are very excited to welcome her to our team,” said Cullen Hilkene, 3Diligent CEO.

Prior to joining 3Diligent, Villano served in various administrative and sales roles for Stratasys Direct Manufacturing, formerly Solid Concepts, over 24 years. Throughout her time with Stratasys, Anna facilitated prototype and production rapid manufacturing jobs across 3D Printing, CNC Machining, Urethane Casting, and Injection Molding.  Her clients spanned a variety of industries including aerospace, medical, scientific instrumentation, life sciences and automotive.  As Director of Sales, Villano will be a main contact for key accounts and provide counsel on project requirements while also serving as liaison between the customer and the 3Diligent operations team.

AnnaLinkedIn“Digital Manufacturing is fundamentally changing the way companies think about fabrication and their supply chains.  3Diligent is leading the way in making digital manufacturing technologies such as 3D Printing easily accessible to businesses everywhere,” said Villano. “My experience has given me a broad view and an understanding of how to support design and manufacturing and I look forward to sharing that knowledge with 3Diligent customers.”

The 3Diligent service offers customers access to a wide variety of rapid manufacturing services, including 3D Printing, CNC machining, molding and casting. Through its secure portal, customers submit a request for quote (RFQ) and using its proprietary software, 3Diligent identifies optimal manufacturing solutions, issues quotes, and fulfills prototype projects and production programs.

For more information on 3Diligent, visit

About 3Diligent

3Diligent is an innovative rapid manufacturing services provider offering CAD/CAM-based fabrication services such as 3D Printing, CNC machining, and casting.  3Diligent launched in 2014 to provide businesses deterred by the cost and obsolescence risk of 3D printer ownership a single source for faster, more convenient, and more affordable additive manufacturing services.  3Diligent uses data science to analyze customer requests for quote (RFQs) and identify optimal solutions across its network of qualified providers.  3Diligent’s next-generation approach to rapid manufacturing allows customers to simplify their procurement and service providers to get more out of their capital investments. 3Diligent counts companies from Fortune 500 enterprises to startups among its customers.  For more information, visit


3Diligent CEO Shares Metal 3D Printing Expertise at WESTEC

It’s been a busy year for 3Diligent and we’ve been all over the country for different conferences, meeting with our peers and customers and sharing our expertise in 3D Printing. I’m excited to share that this week though, we’ll be staying near our headquarters in Los Angeles, Calif. for the West Coast’s leading manufacturing event – WESTEC.

Westec_zoom cropped
3Diligent CEO Cullen Hilkene presenting at Westec.
WESTEC will take place today, September 12 through Thursday, September 14 at the Los Angeles Convention Center. I’ll be speaking in a few hours at 1:00 pm PT on “Metal 3D Printing – Tradeoffs & Applications.” In my presentation, I’ll provide a summary overview on each of the key metal 3D Printing processes in market, outlining pros, cons, and applications commonly served. I’ll also touch on some of the emerging technologies grabbing headlines and how they might fit into the broader ecosystem. My presentation will be at the WESTEC Huddle Ups Theater (318).

If you’re able to attend the presentation, I’d love to meet you so please introduce yourself afterward! If you’re attending WESTEC but can’t make the presentation, send us an email to set up an introduction with our team.

We’re looking forward to being a part of another major manufacturing event and hopefully meeting some of you! Stay tuned to our blog to find out where 3Diligent is headed next!

Behind the Scenes with Multi Jet Fusion: An Interview with HP’s Ramon Pastor

Behind the Scenes with Multi Jet Fusion: An Interview with HP’s Ramon Pastor

Ramon Pastor
The HP Multi Jet Fusion 3D Printer is a significant breakthrough in an industry that is used to breakthroughs. With dramatic print speed, enhancements to support lower overall printing costs, the Multi Jet Fusion 3D printer family represents a meaningful step in 3D Printing’s transition from a prototyping technology to true production option. To get a deeper perspective on this machine – parts from which are offered through 3Diligent network – CEO Cullen Hilkene conducted the following email interview with Ramon Pastor, vice president & general manager, HP 3D Multi Jet Fusion Business.

Multi Jet Fusion can achieve faster production speeds for certain print builds than traditional selective laser sintering (SLS). Tell us a bit about how this is possible (i.e., binding agent, detailing agent, chemical reaction, heat)?

HP’s Jet Fusion 3D Printers deposit fusing and detailing agents onto a layer of powder in one pass thanks to our Pagewide technology, before a set of infrared lamps to fuse the designated areas. This process not only allows the printer to produce more geometrically complex parts than with SLS, but it also allows for continuous printing and increasing the speed of production. Also, new HP cooling technologies cut the cool-down time to a fraction of what is needed in SLS.

Based on our understanding of the Multi Jet Fusion process, it would seem bulkier parts with some challenging details – the same parts that historically have been time-consuming and expensive to produce with 3D Printing – are really where this technology shines, because a jetting pass and a heat lamp pass can go much faster while still providing accuracy on the small details.  Is that true? 

HP 3DP PA 12 Mesh
HP used its Multi Jet Fusion Technology to print this High Reusability PA 12 30L (13g) mesh part, which was assembled as it was printed.
That’s correct. Speed is achieved thanks to our Pagewide technology (all agents are laid down in a single movement), while our drop accuracy is maintained at 20 microns, making it possible to consistently get the most exceptional detail. The use of detailing agents is key to preventing thermal bleed, and ensuring that even the smallest details are preserved.

We’ve supported a number of projects with the HP system, but at a corporate level, in which industries have you seen the greatest resonance so (e.g., industrial products, consumer products)?

We're seeing exciting uses of Multi Jet Fusion in both consumer products as well as industrial production. We are not releasing details at this time, but we've been working with leading global brands including Nike, BMW, Johnson & Johnson, and Jabil to leverage 3D printing for both consumer and industrial use. We see incredible use potential across all major industries: automotive, aerospace, medical technology, consumer goods, electronics, heavy industry, engineering, the list goes on.

What sorts of applications have you seen customers note the greatest impact of the new technology?

Among the greatest benefits of Multi Jet Fusion for customers across industries is the ability to iterate design and production with unprecedented flexibility, which accelerates innovation and creates shorter go-to-market timelines. And one of the most compelling things about HP’s ecosystem model is the Open Platform and Materials Development Kit, which enables customers and partners to work directly with HP at its innovative 3D Open Materials and Applications Lab on custom-designed materials to meet their specific needs.

What are the standard tolerances off the machine?  Do these vary with part size?  Do tolerances vary much in the x, y, and/or z?  Do you experience some degree of shrinkage, as with SLS printers? 

Linear dimensions: ±0.2mm for dimensions smaller than 100mm  // ±0.2% for dimensions larger than 100mm. This applies for all directions and geometries.

What is the standard Ra finish level off of the build tray?  Some say it is better than SLS, especially on downward facing surfaces.  Could you speak to that?

On PA12 we are measuring following roughness between 8-10 um. This can be greatly improved with postprocessing methods.

What about isotropy…do you see weakness in the Z axis or is it consistent?

HP 3DP Finished Part
3D part printed and painted for use in HP’s own HP Jet Fusion 3D Processing Station
Parts built with Multi Jet Fusion 3D printing are also significantly more isotropic and boast a significantly higher Z-direction strength than SLS technologies, thanks to the bonding between fused layers. The time that a fused voxel is exposed to heat is 1000 times longer than in SLS, being a major contributor to isotropy.

We know that Nylon 12 is the first material for HP, and Nylon 6 and 11 are in the pipeline.  What’s the timeline on those?   

We're committed to introducing and certifying new materials for HP 3D printers, but we are not releasing details at this time.

How about color printing?  Timeline on that? 

We are not releasing details at this time.

Can you tell us more about the finishing station?  It appears to perform a number of functions.  Can you speak to those and whether there are any other features planned for the future (e.g., inspection)?

The finishing station comprises a few different functions for the start and completion of the printing process. It connects 3D Materials Cartridges to the HP 3D Build Unit to load material before a print job. At the end of a print job, you can reconnect the Build Unit into the finishing station to engage the enclosed unpacking and material collection system to collect and reuse unused materials. These unused materials are collected in the HP Jet Fusion 3D External Tank, which filters this material back into the cartridges. It also enables fast cooling and continuous printing for increased productivity.

Great! Thanks for all of those insights Ramon. We look forwarding to introducing the benefits of these innovations to our customers as you continue to roll them out.

3Diligent Perspective on Metal 3D Printing Featured in Digital Engineering’s RapidReady

Earlier this month I had the opportunity to speak with editor Pamela Waterman of Digital Engineering about metal 3D Printing and this year’s announcements from both Markforged and Desktop Metal. Our conversation was summarized in a post at the Digital Engineering blog RapidReady entitled “Metal 3D Printing on the Desktop Heats Up.” Here’s an excerpt:

3Diligent, an online manufacturing service that provides rapidly manufactured parts to customers, has its eye on the implications of these systems. Through its web portal, the company offers 3D printing, CNC machining, casting, and molding services for all stages of product development. Cullen Hilkene, 3Diligent CEO and co-founder, has watched the metal AM world expand beyond aerospace and medical users to include automotive, industrial, and consumer applications, and sees significant potential for the new desktop-metal approaches.

“I think we will see opportunities for these new technologies,” says Hilkene, “especially in industries where certain (metal part) requirements like tolerances, porosity and surface finish aren’t as stringent.  I think you can draw parallels between the plastics market and the metals market. In plastics AM (additive manufacturing), you have powder bed and extrusion, and both have advantages.”

You can read the full article here and if you’re interested in learning more about metal 3D Printing, you can download our Complete Guide to Metal 3D Printing here.  If you’d like to get on our mailing list for when we start offering metal parts from these extrusion systems, click here.

3Diligent Makes Major Updates to Resources and Capabilities section

3Diligent has rolled out significant updates to the Services and Resources pages of The updates make it easier to keep in front of the remarkable breadth of rapid manufacturing technologies and materials offered by the company and trends shaping 3D Printing and digital manufacturing more broadly.

The Services section provides a deep dive into each of the technology families offered by 3Diligent.  3D Printing, CNC Machining, and Molding and Casting all have dedicated sections.  Within the dedicated sections, particular details are offered about each of the technology families offered.  For instance, in the 3D Printing section, check out deep dives on Sheet Lamination, Binder Jetting, Material Jetting, Vat Photopolymerization, Extrusion, Powder Bed Fusion, and Directed Energy Deposition.  Each page offers useful context on the defining characteristics, tradeoffs, machines, and materials offered by each process.

Our Resources section is stocked with useful insights, such as:

  • White Papers for perspective from our leadership on where the industry is now and where it’s headed
  • Case Studies detailing how customers have utilized 3Diligent’s rapid manufacturing services
  • Press Coverage which presents some of the news and thought leadership that has been published in the media
  • Material Library detailing materials offered by 3Diligent with hyperlinks to OEM material technical data sheets

We hope you find the new content informative!


Capabilities Page Snapshot 50



3Diligent Releases Complete Guide to Metal 3D Printing

CEO to Speak in Chicago on Metal Printing Processes at 3D Metal Printing Experience and Tech Tour 

Los Angeles, Calif. – August 9, 20173Diligent announced today it has released its Complete Guide to Metal 3D Printing: An Overview of Industry Advancement and Technologies, which provides a comprehensive source of information on current trends in metal 3D Printing and existing and emerging metal printing processes for the reader that is considering a metal printing project.

The 13-page report explores headlines on metal 3D Printing by GE and Boeing, research by 3Diligent from its own State of Professional and Industrial 3D Printing analysis and a summary of the processes, applications, pros and cons of each of the following established and emerging metal 3D Printing technologies:

  • Powder Bed Fusion – Laser Melting
  • Powder Bed Fusion – Electron Beam Melting
  • Infiltrated Binder Jetting
  • Directed Energy Deposition
  • Wax Print-to-Cast
  • Sand Print-to-Cast
  • Print-to-Plating
  • Full Sinter Binder Jetting
  • Sheet Lamination
  • Nano Particle Jetting
  • Extrusion Metal

3Diligent CEO Cullen Hilkene will speak next week at 3D Metal Printing Magazine’s 3D Metal Printing Experience and Tech Tour. Hilkene will speak on Thursday, August 17 at 9:00 am CT on “Metal Printing Processes: Tradeoffs, Applications and Emerging Technologies.” The presentation will cover the different metal-printing technologies in the market, relevant tradeoffs, and common applications. Additionally, the presentation will speak to emerging technologies and how they might complement or compete with existing technologies.

The 3D Metal Printing Experience and Tech Tour will take place at the Hyatt Regency Schaumburg Chicago, August 16-17, 2017, where attendees will be able to interact directly with industry experts, learn about the latest technology developments for 3D metal printing and hear case-study applications for 3D metal printing.

“It’s clear that metal 3D Printing is becoming a foundational technology for the next generation of aerospace, medical and other industrial parts.  However, staying on top of the latest developments to ensure you’re utilizing the best technologies in market and making informed investments can be a major challenge.” said Hilkene. “It is my hope that this report can provide a useful perspective on the current landscape.”

For more information on 3Diligent, its capabilities, and to download the Complete Guide to Metal 3D Printing, visit

About 3Diligent

3Diligent is an innovative rapid manufacturing services provider offering CAD/CAM-based fabrication services such as 3D Printing, CNC machining, and casting.  3Diligent launched in 2014 to provide businesses deterred by the cost and obsolescence risk of 3D printer ownership a single source for faster, more convenient, and more affordable additive manufacturing services.  3Diligent uses data science to analyze customer requests for quote (RFQs) and identify optimal solutions across its network of qualified providers.  3Diligent’s next-generation approach to rapid manufacturing allows customers to simplify their procurement and service providers to get more out of their capital investments. 3Diligent counts companies from Fortune 500 enterprises to startups among its customers.  For more information, visit