ikea introduces its first ever 3D printed objects in the omedelbar collection in collaboration with stylist bea åkerlund. the mesh-inspired stylistic hand series will be hung on the wall or used as a decorative hanger for jewellery.

 

 

the ikea omedelbar hand by bea åkerlund uses SLS (selective laser sintering (SLS) – a powder-based process which relies on a powder material to interact with a laser. after about 40 hours a block of powder with printed objects inside is removed from the 177° c interior of the printer and put in a sealed wooden box. it is kept there 24 hours or until it has come down to 60° c. 

 

 

the build is subsequently taken apart, and the printed items are auto– or manually blasted before cleaned, dried, quality tested and shipped. ‘the product material in sls, nylon 12, is very durable, flexible, chemical resistant, insensitive to stress cracking and has a high resistance to uv radiation. you can recycle both non-used powders in the printing process, and recycle printed products. if not dyed they come out white, but are easily coloured.’ says founding partner sami mattila at materflow where the hand is printed.

 

 

‘we started this project one and a half years ago, predicting the boom in 3d printing in mass production. traditionally the technology has been used for prototyping in high-tech industries or moulds used for traditional production methods. now, we are closing fast on the breaking point where 3d is cost efficient in mass production. in that context, the omedelbar hand will have its place in design production history,’ states jakub pawlak, trader free range ikea poland, in charge of the project.

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