© Daimler AG – Uncommon spare parts from the printer
© Daimler AG

The series has long since ceased production and spare parts are hard to come by? Daimler has been combating this problem for a year now with plastic parts from the printer. Now experts have for the first time created a metallic thermostat cover for the engine of an ageing truck from a 3D laser printer.

“3D metal parts provide the same functionality, reliability, durability and cost-effectiveness as components from conventional manufacture”, explains Andreas Deuschle, Marketing & Operations Manager in the Customer Services & Parts Division of Mercedes-Benz Trucks. This production technique is attractive, he notes, especially for spare parts for Unimogs or other older trucks in order to meet the low demand by means that do not result in expensive storage, complicated transport processes and long lead times. The parts impress, he says, principally on account of their high purity and nearly 100 percent density.

Still available years later

“The particular added value in 3D printing technology lies in the fact that it appreciably enhances speed and flexibility, above all in the production of spare parts and special components”, Deuschle emphasises. Even highly specific components could still be ordered from Mercedes-Benz Trucks for years and supplied worldwide on a call-off basis.