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3D-printing solutions for the railway industry

Stratasys 3D printing in railway

Quickly turn ideas into safety-compliant end-use parts.

When you manufacture rail parts with additive manufacturing using our certified materials, you have the unique ability to perform real-life performance tests of your designs faster than ever before and produce your jigs & fixtures or even the final product. Additive manufacturing ensures a quicker development cycle which means your organisation can move directly into production without time-intensive tooling.

Curious as to how additive manufacturing can solve your design challenges? Reach out to one of our experts today.

Reliable, quality, fast solution

The rail industry is one of the most diverse and heavily relied upon industries in the world. Rail transportation provides a critical link between manufacturing and distribution centres, and is integral to the movement of goods around the globe. 

This reliance on rail makes rapid development in the rail industry vital to ensure efficient and reliable freight service to meet rising global demand. However, as rail networks grow and become more complex, traditional manufacturing techniques can have difficulty keeping up with demand for parts or systems, which can result in costly delays. 

The use of 3D printing can help overcome these challenges by making it easier to produce custom parts and systems that may be required to improve efficiency or the performance of a rail infrastructure.


AM solutions for modern mobility

Address your transportation production challenges head-on. With Additive Manufacturing, you can now easily solve for low volume production by manufacturing customised parts swiftly and on-demand. Keep costs and inventory low when outdated parts break or need updating by having the ability to print them in-house. Some customers have proven overall cost savings of up to 80% compared to traditional manufacturing methods. Ensure your processes stay agile enough to boost overall manufacturing flexibility – a must in the ever-changing world of transport and mobility.

 Streamline your manufacturing and learn how to incorporate Additive Manufacturing into your production process today.

3D printed train parts

We understand safety and compliance standards are of the utmost importance, especially when it comes to fire hazards. Our ULTEM™ 9085 resin and Antero 800NA materials have both passed on all hazard levels fully demonstrating that they are suitable for use in production for the rolling stock industry.

Mitigate production inefficiencies while advancing passenger rail by building out a robust inventory made of sturdy, yet light composite parts. 3D printing gives organisations the unique advantage over traditional tooling methods by offering overall enhanced production manufacturing. 

From a lack of functional customisation, to late-stage design changes, traditional tooling manufacturing can prove to be a slow and often costly way to do business. With 3D printing, gone are the days of the long lead times associated with traditional methods. With the ever-increasing pressure to streamline, the production of rail-ready workholdings and composite parts only grows in necessity for those in the railway industry.

Curious as to how 3D printing can change the way you create? Download our composite tooling design guide below.

Custom 3D printed parts for custom needs.

Compliant 3D printed thermoplastics are modernising the centuries old mobility industry. Now with the capacity to print production parts, rail companies are able to produce parts as needed – whether that be for restoration purposes or specific tooling for their trains. Regardless of the complexity required, additive manufacturing allows for opportunity that did not exist previously for the manufacturing of sturdy, one-off, and cost-effective parts.

Do you have a specific application in mind but want to run it by an additive manufacturing professional?

Why choose additive manufacturing for the rail industry?

There are several advantages offered by 3D printing to the rail industry that make it an ideal technology for applications within the sector. First, unlike traditional manufacturing techniques, such as CNC machining, 3D printing offers significant flexibility in the production of small- to medium-sized parts. 

This allows rail operators to respond quickly to unplanned repairs and operational needs without having to wait for conventional production methods to be completed. For example, 3D printing can be used to develop custom-made components, such as switches or safety barriers, that can be adapted to specific site requirements rather than having to rely on pre-fabricated products that may be inadequate for the intended purpose. 

Repair and maintain rolling stock

Another area where 3D printing can offer a significant advantage is in the maintenance and repair of rolling stock. By using 3D-printed replacement parts for repairs or upgrades, rail operators are able to reduce the downtime and costs associated with carrying out maintenance and they can ensure that their fleet is operating at peak efficiency at all times. 

Finally, 3D printing can also help railway operators reduce costs by streamlining the production pipeline and eliminating unnecessary steps in the supply chain. By printing components on-demand as needed rather than waiting for standard orders to be placed, rail operators can eliminate idle production capacity and reduce inventory costs by up to 30% in some cases.

For example, common 3D printed aerospace components created using Stratasys 3D printing are made from a blend of high-performance thermoplastics combined with carbon fibre reinforcement to reduce weight without compromising on strength. Designed for superior impact and fatigue resistance thanks to its durable nylon construction, carbon fibre is regularly used for aerospace applications.

Proven value

3D printing has tremendous potential to transform the way that rail infrastructures are managed and serviced – from repairing damaged trains and infrastructure, to streamlining the design and manufacturing process and reducing the costs of maintaining our transport networks. By leveraging the unique properties of additive manufacturing technologies, the rail industry can maximise efficiency and improve service reliability while at the same time reducing environmental impact.

Get in touch

Get in touch with an expert today. No matter if you want to explore the effects of 3D printing in rail or if you would like to discover the best 3D printers, we will help you get the information, insight and expertise you need. 

Alternatively, you can find out about the specification, service and price of a printer today. We are here to help you get it right.