Shapeways, The Community

3D Printing Silver is Back

We are VERY excited to announce the return of Solid Silver to Shapeways with a better price and the same amazing quality.

Due to requests from the Shapeways community we trialled Silver late last year and saw some truly awesome items in the Shapeways Shops, especially in the jewelry section.  After the trial we looked at the products, process and price, taking all that we have learned and applying it to our new, permanent offering of silver on Shapeways.

The Price and Delivery Time

With our new production partner we have managed to reduce the price!

$40 for the first cm3, then $20 per cm3 for additional volume, with a minimum cost of $40

We will also be offering an additional Silver Glossy post process for $10 per item.

Delivery time will be 15 business days

Material and Process

As before, we’re using Sterling silver which is 92.5% pure silver. The models are created using the lost-wax casting process using a high-resolution 3D Wax print of your design. After printing the model is cleaned and optionally manually polished (we call this Silver Glossy). Please note that only well-reachable surfaces can be polished!

Design Rules

The design rules for silver will evolve as we learn from your items but as a starting point below are our initial rules, keep an eye on design rules for silver for the most current rules as the blog will not be updated:

  • Wall min: .6 mm
  • Detail min: .3 mm
  • Max height: 30 mm for smaller items (like rings), 20 mm for bigger items (like bracelets)
  • Max length & width: 150 mm x 150 mm
  • You can expect accuracy of +/- 25 microns
  • Note: To start, we are not allowing any multiple, movable or interlocking parts.
  • Embossing: max 1:1 height to width ratio — height of the embossed detail may not be higher than the wall of the detail
  • Engraving: max 1:1 depth to width ratio —  depth of the engraved detail may not be greater than the wall of the engraved detail.
  • Distance between holes must be greater than .6 mm.Hollow parts need openings so we can get out the support material, and so we can insert casting plaster
  • For hollow parts, If you have one hole, opening needs to be greater than 4 mm in diameter, If you have multiple holes, it must be greater than 2 mm in diameter.
  • Ring shank needs to be 1 mm thick to avoid deformation when wearing. Since silver is a weaker material, ring shank that are too thin may deform or even break.
  • Prongs for holding stones cannot be too long without a beam connecting them. This connecting beam is to prevent the wax from breaking away. Also, with thin and long prongs, the product will not to be able to hold big stones.

Ordering new objects in Silver
When ordering a new model you can now select Silver as an available material. For Shop Owners, we have added Silver to all the models in the Jewelry category, all products that are currently available in metal, all items that were previously available in silver, and all items currently not in a shop; then we will set the mark up to be the equal as the currently highest marked up material for each product. If you previously had silver for your product, the markup this time around will be the same as your previous silver markup.

Let us know what you think? Is the pricing structure clear? Would it be better if we said $20 cm3 with a $20 start up cost? What will you make first?

About me
Shapeways Designer Evangelist
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