The world's largest truck manufacturer announced today that it will be 3d printing spare parts, made from plastic, on demand, instead of keeping them in inventory at high numbers.
Daimler AG, which owns Mercedes Benz, has decided that instead of shipping spare parts across the globe, they'll now send a digital file to the party that needs the part, which will then be 3d printed. The transition is expected by September of this year.
The parts will include spring caps, air and cable ducts, clamps, mountings and control elements, according to a statement put out by the company on Wednesday.
"Daimler has more than 100,000 printed prototype parts, and will be expanding production using 3D printing methods," Reuters wrote. "The printed' spare parts are created with 3D printers based on the Selective Laser Sintering (SLS) printing process and ordered using the special spare part number, even for parts on models which are several decades old."
This new supply chain methodology can serve multiple benefits, including cost reductions, weight efficiencies and the ability to produce spare parts that would have otherwise been discontinued due to supplier issues.