Indian family-run company, Magod Laser has joined forces with TRUMPF, one of the world’s biggest providers of machine tools and manufacturers of metal 3D printing systems, to promote the 3D printing technology in the Indian subcontinent.
Inspiration from the U.S.
The story began in 1991 in the U.S., where Swamy Magod, the current Managing Director of Magod Laser, was doing his Master’s degree in industrial engineering. He stayed on to work for a few years after graduating – and that’s where he first came across laser technology and heard the name TRUMPF. Once he had acquired plenty of laser cutting experience, he returned to India with a clear goal in mind – to save time and customer costs in sheet metal cutting.
Founded in 1997 in Bangalore, Magod Laser is synonymous with the application of the Laser Power for industrial operations in India. Theirs was the first company in South India that was using lasers to cut sheet metal. With the ultimate aim of making sheet metal cutting faster and affordable for the customers, the company has managed to capture a huge share from the Indian market.
Today, Magod Laser has a grand total of 25 TRUMPF machines – and the company is now leading the way in India’s adoption of additive manufacturing. Its focus on adopting high-end technology helped it in taking the plunge to collaborate with TRUMPF for the promotion of 3D printing in India.
Taking the Plunge into Additive Manufacturing
With an early tilt towards TRUMPF, Magod Laser purchased the much-needed equipment they needed and with the positive experience with the company and its machines, Magod Laser decided to take a plunge into additive manufacturing.
The idea clicked Swamy when one of its customers asked the team to laser-weld the parts together. Swamy explained, “Two of our customers were already using 3D printing and they asked us to laser-weld the parts together. I realized that the time had come to print metal parts ourselves.”
TRUMPF supplied the necessary equipment in the form of a TruPrint 1000, and Swamy introduced a combined process that fully exploited the company’s expertise. According to Swamy, “With 3D printing, there’s a limit to how big the parts can be, so we offer a combination of additive manufacturing and laser welding. To make bigger parts, we simply weld several small parts together.”
The overarching problem in the Indian additive manufacturing market is the awareness of the technology, but the company feels confident that they will drive the technology in the country. They say that numerous companies have expressed an interest in trying out the technology, spanning sectors from aviation to medical devices.
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3D Printing opens up Extraordinary Possibilities
There are certainly plenty of good reasons to adopt additive manufacturing. The technology opens up previously impossible geometries, paving the way for users to improve and enhance their parts. The production of implants for medical purposes is just one example: 3D-printed implants are more durable and fuse more successfully with healthy bone tissue. Another benefit of additive manufacturing is that it only deposits material where it is actually needed, so 3D printed parts are lighter. What’s more, any excess powder can simply be reprocessed and reused – a far more economical and sustainable approach than conventional processes such as milling, 70 where up to 80 percent of the material ends up being wasted.
Practical Experiments are key
Magod Laser’s enthusiasm for experimenting with different geometries and materials and developing new parts is shared by Magod’s customers. The company experiments with the powder technology and they try out different new materials, both for their own purposes and on behalf of various research institutes. Magod engineers also make prototypes for companies that are considering 3D printing their own spare parts.
Seizing the Initiative
Educating potential customers and promoting 3D printing in India is an important step – and Magod Laser believes in seizing the initiative. According to Swamy, “Some companies look at the parts they produce and know that some of them are suitable for additive manufacturing, but they’re not sure which ones. That’s where we can help”. From prospective customers to long-standing partners, Magod Laser is always happy for people to visit their production plant to see 3D printing technology in action. In all his entrepreneurial endeavours, Magod benefits from having a workforce that is open-minded and willing to learn.
He continues, “We’re always on the lookout for new technologies to add to our portfolio because learning new things is a key part of our corporate ethos. We take our employees’ professional development seriously. By giving them the opportunity to acquire skills in new processes such as 3D printing, we pave the way for them to move into more responsible positions. There’s a learning curve in any new technology. At the end of the day, it’s better for us to develop our own team instead of bringing in experts from outside, and our employees feel more valued if we invest in their development and gradually give them more responsibility.”
Magod benefits from having a workforce that is open-minded and willing to learn and this inherent trait of the team will undoubtedly help Magod Laser to play a vital role in the Indian additive manufacturing market in the future.
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